Penn State

Jeffery M. Peters - Associate Professor, Department of Veterinary Science, Penn State University Park

Book Title: Boys of Summer

Author: Roger Kahn

Book Description:

On the occasion of my tenure at Penn State, I have been given the honor of choosing a book for the Penn State University Libraries' collection. Given my academic experience in molecular toxicology and carcinogenesis, one might expect me to choose a book related to this discipline. However, I have not. Although it is critical to take one's academic career very seriously, it is equally important to find an outlet away from this venue. I first became aware of my chosen book when I received my copy from Lynn M. Wiley, Ph.D., my postdoctoral mentor at the University of California at Davis. It was a valued gift to me because Dr. Wiley was a true fan of the San Francisco Giants, the anathema of my beloved Los Angeles Dodgers. I have chosen Roger Kahn's "Boys of Summer", which consists of stories about the Brooklyn Dodgers. I love playing, watching, talking about, and collecting memorabilia regarding the game. My favorite professional team is the Los Angeles Dodgers. Kahn's book recounts how "pure" the game of baseball used to be, with talented men playing primarily for fun and the love of the game, rather than money. These stories serve as contemporary allegories of filial love, courage, winning and losing. Of special note, the book describes the challenges and successes of one of my favorite players, Jackie Robinson. Robinson broke through what seemed to be at the time an insurmountable barrier of racism--an achievement that should never be forgotten.


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