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Un été sans point ni coup sûr

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Un été sans point ni coups sûr is a young adult novel published in 2004 by Marc Robitaille, which takes place during the Montreal Expos' inaugural season of 1969. The book is abundantly illustrated with memorabilia from that year, making it a great historical document in addition to an excellent young adult novel.

Young Martin, who lives in a newly-built neighborhood in the suburbs of Montreal, QC is excited about the the arrival of the new major league team and wants to play Little League baseball that summer. However, he fails to make the local parish team, "Les Aristocrates", made up of snotty privileged kids. Seeing his despair, his father agrees to set up a team made up of the rejected kids, and they begin playing on a nearby weed-infested field. When the Aristocrates suffer a few injuries, they court Martin to join them, but he does not feel well-liked by that group and returns to his own crowd. The reject kids' team suddenly becomes good when a new family moves into the neighborhood, whose son is a pitcher with a tremendous arm. The Aristocrates want to recruit him and arrange to play a game against the sad-sacks. However, the star pitcher has hurt his arm in the meantime, and Martin has to take the mound. At first, the Aristocrates take the game as a lark and fool around, but in true "Turtle and the Hare" fashion, the outsiders take a lead, and by the time the Aristocrates start taking things seriously, it is too late. Martin and his gang have their revenge.

The book was very well received and Robitaille was asked to turn it into a screenplay for a movie of the same name, released in 2008. Starring Patrice Robitaille as the father and Pierre Luc Funk as Martin, the film also includes cameos from a number of well-known figures from the Quebec baseball scene, including Jacques Doucet, Marc Griffin and Rodger Brulotte. The family-oriented movie was one of the most-popular Canadian films of the summer of its release and was also dubbed into English, with the title A No-Hit No-Run Summer. It played internationally at various family film festivals, where it was also well received. In addition to the fun story and excellent actors involved, the film was praised for its outstanding recreation of the time period, and for inventive touches such as having the ghost of Mack Jones come out of Martin's bedroom closet to give him tips on hitting.

[edit] Further Reading

  • Marc Robitaille: Un été sans point ni coup sûr, Les 400 Coups, Montréal, 2004. ISBN 2-89540-206-X

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