War Fever: Boston, Baseball, and America in the Shadow of the Great War (Hardcover)
About the Author
"In the midst of the curveball that is this crisis, sporty titles are helping satiate those who typically prefer spring training to spring releases. War Fever, a new book by Randy Roberts and Johnny Smith, examines how baseball converged with the country's last terrible pandemic. Among the tidbits revealed: In 1918, Babe Ruth had the so-called Spanish flu twice - so baseball, at least, has been here before."—Washington Post
"Roberts and Smith have a brilliant knack for finding unexplored subjects and bringing them fully to life. This haunting, elegantly written book is the story of Boston -- but really America itself -- set against the background of a raging global war, momentous lifestyle changes, and an influenza epidemic that would kill more people in a shorter time than any event in human history. Told through the eyes of three vibrant characters, War Fever is a sober reminder of the forces that came together in 1918 to confront the Great War and shape the nation's future."—David Oshinsky, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Polio: An American Story
"Carefully researched, full of dramatic moments and keen insights, and written with panache, War Fever is at once an impressive act of historical recovery and a ripping good tale. Weaving together the stories of the nation's greatest military hero, one of its most dastardly villains, and its most celebrated professional athlete, Randy Roberts and Johnny Smith vividly reconstruct the historical forces that reshaped Boston and reconfigured American life during World War I."
—Bruce J. Schulman, Boston University
"Roberts and Smith have written a fascinating and impressive book that sheds new light on the home front during World War I by examining the lives of three men and the city they loved. The fast-paced narrative is full of colorful characters, suspense, and intrigue. Although deeply researched and full of insight, the book reads more like a suspense novel than a work of history. Valuable for both history lovers and casual readers."
—Steven M. Gillon, author of America's Reluctant Prince: The Life of John F. Kennedy
"War Fever brilliantly weaves together the lives of three celebrities to tell the story of how the First World War reshaped America. Richly detailed and a pleasure to read."
—Michael S. Neiberg, author of The Path to War: How the First World War Created Modern America