I Got It!
by Wiesner, David

In this wordless picture book, a young outfielder imagines all the terrifying ways he might not catch the baseball, and one way that he can.

David Wiesner is internationally renowned for his visual storytelling and has won the Caldecott Medal three times&;for Tuesday, The Three Pigs, and Flotsam&;the second person in history to do so. He is also the recipient of three Caldecott Honors, for Free Fall, Sector 7, and Mr. Wuffles. He lives near Philadelphia with his family.

*Starred Review* Three-time Caldecott medalist Wiesner hits it out of the park with this almost-wordless picture book about a boy who just wants to be part of the baseball team. When a ball is thrown, he optimistically shouts, "I got it!" and runs with gloved arm outstretched, but he trips over a tree root. Hat, birds, and ball fly off as he misses. But can he rewind and effect a do-over? In almost dreamlike slow motion, the boy imagines a better outcome. He envisions the whole team and all the birds flying toward the ball, still high in the air. Now gigantic, the ball looms over the double-page spread; as the illustrations grow more surreal, the boy outstrips the flying birds, passes up all the other children, and swoops up to fly, arm extended, for the grand finale: "I GOT IT!" He's the hero of the team! Whether real or a dream, the ecstatic catch is euphoric, as teammates cheer him. Acrylic, gouache, and watercolor illustrate every page with breathless blue sky and clouds, dynamic poses, and the active diagonals of sprinting children and the arcing ball. Generous white space becomes the background for a critical moment for a remarkable grab out of the sky. Copyright 2017 Booklist Reviews.

A weedy kid in shorts and a T-shirt goes to the sandlot with a glove, hoping to play.Sent to the outfield, the kid waits for a chance. The batter hits a long fly ball that sails that way. The protagonist runs, leaps, and stretches, yelling, "I got it!"—the only words in the book. But the kid trips over some roots, dives, and lands on the ground with the ball just out of reach, while team members cluster around, clutching their heads in disbelief. Wiesner is a master of fantastical wordless (or nearly so) adventures, and what seems to be a simple event becomes a series of might-have-beens and possibilities, playing out several times with different scenarios. A huge tree with protruding roots appears and stops the kid from getting to the ball; several teammates give chase, gloves outstretched, as the protagonist seems to be among them and then flying over them to finally grab the elusive ball: "I GOT IT!" This time it is the batter who's thrown into despair, while the pro tagonist's team cheers. And what about the birds? Are they just observers or are they somehow affecting the outcome? Sometimes the protagonist is small and the glove and ball are huge as perspective shifts. The scenes are softly painted, growing brighter and sharper after the catch. Readers will interpret it any way they wish, perhaps differently with each perusal. The protagonist has light olive skin and straight black hair, and the other players are racially and gender diverse. Wonderfully imaginative and intriguing. (Picture book. 6-10) Copyright Kirkus 2018 Kirkus/BPI Communications. All rights reserved.

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