Growing up Pedro, by Matt Tavares; Candlewick Press, $16.99, 40 pages, ages 8-12.
Veteran baseball writer Matt Tavares (There Goes Ted Williams; Becoming Babe Ruth; Henry Aaron’s Dream) explores the improbable rise of pitching legend Pedro Martinez. Tavarez tracks the three-time Cy Young Award winner from very begining, living in the small village of Manoguaybo in the Dominican Republic, when Pedro’s older brother Ramon was the best pitcher around. Soon enough, the brothers make their way to the Major Leagues, and Tavarez illustrates the innate talent, dedication and powerful brotherly bond that helped make this baseball dream a reality. (Don’t worry baseball-fan parents; Houghton-Mifflin Harcourt is publishing Pedro’s own memoir, due out in May.)