A comic novel about a clinically depressed baseball team
A beauty—a funny, raunchy, touching tale of a major league team’s season of discontent and triumph. Carkeet can write.
This is one of the funniest novels I know, making David Carkeet a worthy heir to Ring Lardner, though with a softer heart. The Greatest Slump of All Time tells the tale of a baseball team whose sensational players are troubled by almost every conceivable psychological affliction. As they stagger toward a championship, history's most dysfunctional starting nine battles against unresolved childhood hurts, despair, sexual inhibition, narcissism, resentment, self-doubt, paranoia and thoughts of suicide. The entire batting order is memorable in its disorder.
Smart and funny.
--Nicholas Dawidoff, in The Wall Street Journal
It is amazing that in this, his second novel (his first was a hilarious whodunit called Double Negative), Carkeet has come out of nowhere to write one of the most original and likable baseball novels of recent years. . . . It has everything going for it: an entertaining mixture of dugout humor and Freudian introspection; an insider’s knowledge of the game and its pressures; and one of the wackiest (yet most appealing) plots to come along in years.
--San Francisco Chronicle
--Cleveland Plain Dealer
Somehow, Carkeet creates cartoon ballplayers with genuine emotions. The result is equal parts Freud, Casey Stengel, and Jonathan Winters. Slump is not just a fine novel—it’s a good story as well.
--The Village Voice
Sometimes the humor is dry. Sometimes it is I-can’t-stop-laughing funny. But more impressive than the humor, more significant than the small curiosity which builds as to whether this team will self-destruct or hold together, is the baseball feeling that permeates the written word. It is not an easy goal to achieve.
--Atlanta Journal and Constitution
Wanna read a really funny, funny book? Get David Carkeet’s The Greatest Slump of All Time. A laugh on every page, and if you love baseball, you’ll treasure it.
--Larry King, in USA Today
The personalities are wickedly depicted and the satire is the kind that makes you want to laugh and cry at the same time. It’s a great way for fans to start the season.
A wise and whimsical, raucous and probing story of one fictional major league team’s summer of discontent.
--Los Angeles Herald-Examiner
This sparkling, distinctive novel manages to be both very dry and laugh-out-loud funny.
In effect, there are nine central characters . . . The hates, miserable childhoods, marital and parental problems, sexual frustrations, superstitions, and other hang-ups involve us with all nine, and Mr. Carkeet makes us care what becomes of them. The Greatest Slump of All Time is a funny, bittersweet way to celebrate another baseball season.
--Kansas City Star
Can anybody write this game? Red Smith could write it. Roger Angell can write it. Roger Kahn can write it. You might want to add a new one to the lineup, David Carkeet.
--Fort Worth Star-Telegram
A smiling tale . . . Not since W. P. Kinsella’s Shoeless Joe has a novel based itself in the game with more success. Or made us step back into the childhood fields of green—without any of the paraphernalia of a sport-mad society’s scrutiny.
The book is heartbreaking and funny at the same time. . . . The author not only understands the human condition, he also understands baseball.
Carkeet, always a witty and humane writer, paints a rich picture of a disparate group realizing success in a game doesn’t always mean success in life.
A baseball novel so funny that audiobook manufacturers hesitate to record it for fear of vehicular liability.
--David Kipen, in The Atlantic
At old Busch Stadium, the author explains the importance of hitting the cut-off man to young Molly.