Don't let it be said that I don't keep my promises. My first "real" post is going to introduce my book, The Curse of Carl Mays. You won't find it in bookstores, at least not yet. It's available on all internet bookselling sites, including Amazon.com and Barnesandnoble.com. It's available in both hardcover and paperback, and if you'd like it signed, we'll work something out.
Here's a non-spoiler plot description:
It's October 25, 1986-for Red Sox Nation, a date that will live in infamy. Game Six.
Pat McCarvill is Boston's popular mayor, presiding over a boomtown riding the wave of the "Massachusetts Miracle." Despite his success, he's forever haunted by a youthful decision to abandon a once-promising professional baseball career. McCarvill was born on the anniversary of the tragedy to which he has always felt strangely connected: the death of Ray Chapman, killed by a pitch thrown by a one-time Red Sox star, Carl Mays.
Hours before Game Six is to begin, that cosmic connection will unfold. McCarvill is injured while playing in a pre-game charity event, but the paramedics dispatched to his aid mysteriously travel back to 1920, rescuing Chapman instead. The historical timeline has been tampered with, and back in 1986 things have changed -- for McCarvill, for the Red Sox, for all of Boston. Now, a legendary fable will be debunked, a life's regret will be redeemed, and a city's dream will be fulfilled ... but at what cost?
The story was inspired by a friend's baseball concussion. As he's laying unconscious and prostrate beyond the first base bag waiting for an ambulance, I'm plot-riffing. Some buddy, eh? In a future post, I'll give the ugly details. Suffice to say he beat out the infield roller, and his pinch-runner scored the winning run.
The book may seem like it's just for chowderheads, but it's really for all baseball fans. As a work of "alternate history," it paints the fictional characters on a historical canvas, so real-life players portray critical fictional roles. Bill Lee, Joe Sambito, Bill Buckner, Bruce Hurst, Sparky Lyle, Pudge Fisk, Rich Gedman, Steamer Stanley ... they're all in there, of course, along with Carl Mays and Ray Chapman.
I'm still waiting for a few promised newspaper reviews, but the Bosox Blogosphere has been very kind. Here's the review Sawx Blog gave it:
The great majority of baseball books that I read and review on SawxBlog are of the non-ficton variety and based on actual events that took place. In reading The Curse of Carl Mays author Howard Camerik does an extremely good job in blending the lore of fiction and non into a cohesive and entertaining novel.
The backdrop for the book is the 1986 World Series between the Boston Red Sox and New York Mets, however the story spans across numerous generation and times which really make the book a unique experience. The other main story that drives The Curse of Carl Mays is the tragic story of how former Red Sox/Yankee, Carl Mays, killed the only major leaguer in baseball history (Ray Chapman) back in August of 1920.
The book's lead character, Pat McCarvill leads two completely different lives during the gestation of the book. One is as Boston's young, charismatic, and idealistic Mayor, and the other is as an embattled relief pitcher who is ending his career where it started, with the Boston Red Sox. The result of his life path, is based on the reversing of the Carl Mays tragedy. It's a real treat to see how Camerik balances the two of these different outcomes.
Camerik is the real star of the book with his ability to keep all events from the different time periods factual, while making a very entertaining and interesting story. I honestly don't want to give away too much of the book because I recommend it that highly. This is Camerik's first book and you can truly tell it was a labor of love for him.
Red Sox fans will especially like this story, however there's so much other baseball facts and tidbits in this entertaining story that I think fans outside of the hub will appreciate it as well.
OK then. Time for FanNation to eat it up. And then we'll move on.