A High Five for Glenn Burke

By: Phil Bildner

When sixth grader Silas Wade does a school presentation on former Major Leaguer Glenn Burke, it’s more than just a report on the irrepressible inventor of the high five. Burke was a gay baseball player in the 1970s—and for Silas, the presentation is his own first baby step toward coming out. Soon he tells his best friend, Zoey, but the longer he keeps his secret from his baseball teammates, the more he suspects they know something’s up—especially when he stages one big cover-up with terrible consequences.

ISBN: 9780374312732

JLG Release: Jun 2020


Sensitive Areas: Discrimination: Racial Insensitivity/Racism; Discrimination: Sexuality; Language: Homophobic Slur
Topics: Glenn Burke (1952 1995) , Baseball , Role models , Schools , Coming out (sexual orientation) , Best friends , Friendship , Family life , LGBTQ

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Praise & Reviews

Starred or favorable reviews have been received from these periodicals:

School Library Journal, Booklist*

School Library Journal

The author of the “Rip and Red” series tells the story of baseball-obsessed Silas, a 6th-grader whose journey to self-acceptance begins with a school presentation on Glenn Burke, the 1970s baseball player who invented the high-five, who was gay, and whose real-life story did not have a happy ending. Soon Silas is coming out to his best friend, The author of the “Rip and Red” series tells the story of baseball-obsessed Silas, a 6th-grader whose journey to self-acceptance begins with a school presentation on Glenn Burke, the 1970s baseball player who invented the high-five, who was gay, and whose real-life story did not have a happy ending. Soon Silas is coming out to his best friend, Zoey, and to his favorite baseball coach. But things get complicated when a couple of his teammates use “gay” as an insult, and he finds himself lying about Zoey being his girlfriend. With Coach Webb’s support, he learns to take responsibility for his actions and strive for authenticity as he sorts out the mess he has created with his lie. As the novel ends, Silas has not yet come out to his family, but readers can be sure that when he does, they will respond with love and support. The baseball-heavy plot may deter readers who aren’t interested in sports, so librarians may need to be prepared to hand-sell this compassionate, well-written story to ensure a wider audience.

Book Details

ISBN

9780374312732

First Release

June 2020

Genre

Fic

Dewey Classification

F

Trim Size

8 1/4" x 5 1/3"

Page Count

288

Accelerated Reader

N/A

Scholastic Reading Counts

N/A

Lexile

Level 690L

Format

Print Book

Edition

Hardcover edition

Publisher

Farrar, Straus & Giroux

Potentially Sensitive Areas

Discrimination: Racial Insensitivity/Racism; Discrimination: Sexuality; Language: Homophobic Slur

Topics

Glenn Burke (1952 1995), Baseball, Role models, Schools, Coming out (sexual orientation), Best friends, Friendship, Family life, LGBTQ,

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