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Book details
  • Genre:FICTION
  • SubGenre:Historical
  • Language:English
  • Pages:440
  • Format:Paperback
  • eBook ISBN:9781098316815
  • Paperback ISBN:9781098316808

Jack Madison

The Shaping Of His Life

by Larry R. Wiles

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The baseball accelerated through the warm 1950's May midafternoon air. The trajectory appeared to be beyond the centerfield fence assuring victory the Fairmont High School baseball team. Jack Madison dreamed his entire life about this moment and the opportunity to play for the Illinois State High School baseball championship, but today, his earlier actions caused him to be placed on suspension and ineligible to play. 

Follow Jack, his black mentor baseball coach, Fred Jenkins, Jack's family, teammates and the town as Jack's personality and above average talent land him in daily events where he learns life's lessons that will shape his life and the life of those around him. Lessons about teamwork, brother to brother relationships, temper, misdirected pride, winning and losing, bigotry and hard work to achieve a goal.

Experience the golden age of the fifties. The transition from radio to television, Rock and Roll, the growth of the economy and the establishment of the first suburban  areas, mothers changing role and the excitement of Americas past time, baseball

What happened to the baseball accelerating towards the centerfield fence?

You will just have to read the book to find out!

Todays world is very complex. Technology is moving at supersonic speeds, communications are immediate sometimes with unthought of consequences, many forms of social media tend to make us judgmental and personal relationships are more difficult with electronics creating barriers between us. Jack Madison was written to provide young adults, or all others , an avenue to experience a series of life lessons that can be transferred and absorbed in todays culture. The story, told through the eyes of baseball, details the life of Jack Madison from the age of 10 to 17 and his relationship with his black baseball mentor, Fred Jenkins. Fred, originally from Mississippi, was spotted playing in a Negro baseball league by a scout from the New York Giants and was an early signee after Jackie Robinson. He played seven years in the minor leagues before retiring and moving to Fairmont to manage all the towns baseball activities. Jack Madison in many ways is your typical young person growing up in the 1950's. He is passionate about baseball and is pretty good at it. All Jack wants to do is play baseball, win and support others in playing the game. Fred recognized Jack's potential at an early age and began to mold him to become leader and outstanding player. Jacks family consists of a mother, father and a brother, Phil. His father works for the East Central Railroad and his mother manages the family household. Phil and Jack are three years apart and like all siblings the relationship is at times love and not so love! They argue, fight and fuss, but never underestimate their love for each other. Jack, Fred and his teammates learn valuable lessons about winning, losing, prejudices and small town values along the way as Fred leads in developing winning teams from Little League to high school plus helping to mature those who play for him. Lessons surrounding baseball and personal events help Jack shape his life and lead him to success in family and business. In the end Jack. Fred and Fairmont may be a lesson for the reader as well.
About the author

Jack Madison is Larry R. Wiles' second novel.

"The Caper In Shanghai," his first, chronicles Rick and Teri Watson's adventures proving their best friend, John Alworth, did not commit a murder in China, discovering the real killer and securing their best friends freedom.

Larry grew up in Centralia, Illinois in the 1940's and the 1950's.

He was and still is passionate about baseball, playing the sport at many levels throughout his life. He is a diehard Atlanta Braves fan.

Although most of the facts and places in Jack Madison are fictional, this novel is loosely autobiographical describing a young boy growing up, though the eyes of baseball, in the 1950's Midwest and life's lessons he learned that shaped his life

Larry graduated from Murray State University in 1964 with a degree in Communications. He attempts to hang with his blended family of three daughters and one son.

He and his wife, Deborah, have six grandchildren and five great grandchildren focused in the Charleston, S. C. area, but scattered across the United States.

One grandson, Andrew, is the genesis of this novel.

Today, Larry lives in Goose Creek, just outside of Charleston. He retired from a long and successful business career in 2013. His constant companion while he writes is Lola, a seven-year-old mini red, Dachshund.

He is currently at work on a Jack Madison sequel.

You are cordially invited to share this book with friends and family and other readers and to personally contact Larry with your comments about Jack Madison at [email protected]

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