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Saturday, February 16 , 2019, 6:21 am | Fair 50º

 
 
 
 
Advice

Novelist Ken Berris to Sign Copies of ‘Wild Cards’ in Montecito Sept. 25

Author Ken Berris will appear Sept. 25 at 5 p.m. at Tecolote in Montecito for a book-signing event, which hopes to keep neighborhood bookstores a part of American life.

The signing's goal has much to do with America's past time, and the subject of Berris's novel: baseball.

Like baseball, the universe is an astonishing organization of complex rules, and sometimes both tilt sideways on their axes and the rules are bent. Doors are opened. Eyes are opened. History is made.

No, it isn’t easy to discern reality from fantasy sometimes, but within the friendly confines of our national pastime, award-winning director and screenwriter Ken Berris offers a fantastic new vision in Wild Cards (ACTA Publications, July 2015), an action-packed new novel about loyalty, virtuosity, faith and baseball through time and space.

Hope Hughes and her son Griffin are on the run across country, eluding a homicidal gang of thugs who are after a box of old baseball cards. The cards are the only things that Griffin’s dad left for him before he died tragically. They could be worth a fortune, but they are worth so much more to Griffin. 

As Hope and Griffin run out of options, they are presented with surprising assistance from unexpected sources.

Some of the very best hitters and pitchers the game has ever seen — Ty Cobb, Lou Gehrig, Roberto Clemente, Babe Ruth, Christy Mathewson, Jim Thorpe, Josh Gibson, Satchel Paige, Ted Williams and Jackie Robinson — mysteriously appear through their old baseball cards as the legendary athletes they were in their prime and are somehow compelled to help them.

The only snag is that these players died decades ago. Why? How? What could explain their presence? Multiple dimensions? Time travel? An illusion? Were they ghosts righting a wrong? Or guardian angels in the outfield? 

Whatever the cause or reason, these ten men address Hope and Griffin’s dangerous predicament, the state of the game, their pasts, their new chances at “life” and baseball, and in doing so deal with the unfamiliar twenty-first century in the process.

The implausible becomes possible — and a lot of fun — as an event of epic proportions and potentially dire consequences plays out in front of the world at Yankee Stadium.

It’s the “Game for the Ages” against modern-day stars like Miguel Cabrera, Clayton Kershaw, Mike Trout and Madison Bumgarner. The game that we’ve always wanted to see, and the stakes — the lives of innocent people, the soul of the game and the desire for a departed father to return to his family — couldn’t be higher.

Do you believe in miracles? Because anything can happen on these pages. Play ball.

Berris takes readers on a fantastic baseball odyssey that proves that the full measure of a baseball player cannot be realized by studying the stats on the back of his baseball card.

Sometimes, when the universe tilts sideways on its axis, we get a better understanding of what “legend” really means

— Adam Rifenberick is a publicist representing Ken Berris.

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