Hard Ball (Paperback)
For as long as Billy Baggs can remember, rich townie and ace pitcher Archer "King" Kenwood has been his nemesis--both on the field and off. And the summer before they enter high school, their long-standing rivalry explodes into violence. Desperate to keep the peace between his two star players, Coach Anderson comes up with a plan: If they want to play, they have to pay--by spending a week together, twenty-four hours a day.
But will Coach's plan make things better? Or just a whole lot worse?After a family tragedy on the farm, Billy Baggs’s life is finally back on track. He’s starting high school. He’s caught the eye of the baseball coach and even a few college scouts. He has prospects for a girlfriend—Suzy Langen, the catch of the ninth grade. But blocking Billy’s path is King Kenwood, town rich kid and ace pitcher. As the two boys’ rivalry turns violent, it is left to Coach Anderson to find a solution. In the process, both Billy and King come to find their real problems might lie closer to home—with their own fathers.
Will Weaver is an award-winning fiction writer. His latest novel is The Survivors, a sequel to his popular young adult novel Memory Boy. His other books include Full Service, Defect, Saturday Night Dirt, Super Stock Rookie, Checkered Flag Cheater, Claws, and the Billy Baggs books Striking Out, Farm Team, and Hard Ball, all of which are ALA Best Books for Young Adults. Formerly an English professor at Bemidji State University, he lives in northern Minnesota, a region he writes from and loves. He is an avid outdoorsman and enjoys hunting, fishing, canoeing, and hiking with his family and friends.