12 April 2023

The All-American | A Novel-Tea Evening with Authors | Guest Post + Giveaway

JustRead Publicity Tours


A Novel-Tea Evening with Authors
September 2, 2023 at 7 p.m.
Palmer House Hilton Hotel, Chicago

Join us at 7 p.m. on Saturday, September 2, at Chicago’s historic Palmer House Hilton Hotel for a tasteful evening with tea and talk of books, writing, history, and the power of story. Emceed by Chris Jager of Baker Book House, seven novelists will share what inspires them, tales from the research files, what they’ve learned on the journey, and their hope for readers.


"An absolute winner."--Tosca Lee, New York Times bestselling author

It is 1952, and nearly all the girls Bertha Harding knows dream of getting married, keeping house, and raising children. Bertha dreams of baseball. She reads every story in the sports section, she plays ball with the neighborhood boys--she even writes letters to the pitcher for the Workington Sweet Peas, part of the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League.

When Bertha's father is accused of being part of the Communist Party by the House Un-American Activities Committee, life comes crashing down. But dreams are hard to kill, and when Bertha gets a chance to try out for the Workington Sweet Peas, she packs her bags for an adventure she'll never forget.

Join award-winning author Susie Finkbeiner for a summer of chasing down your dreams and discovering the place you truly belong.

"A true home run from start to finish!"--Katherine Reay, bestselling author of The London House and A Shadow in Moscow

"A deeply moving must-read."--Jennifer L. Wright, author of If It Rains, Come Down Somewhere, and The Girl from the Papers

"Pitch perfect. If you enjoy fiction that makes you think and makes you feel, this book is for you."--Katie Powner, author of Where the Blue Sky Begins

"Susie Finkbeiner has mastered the art of writing family stories that tenderly balance heartbreak and hope."--Amanda Cox, Christy Award‑winning author of The Edge of Belonging and The Secret Keepers of Old Depot Grocery

Publisher: Revell
Release Date: July 11, 2023


Memories of Baseball by Susie Finkbeiner

I never got to see a Major League Baseball game when I was a kid. I didn’t play Little League and my neighborhood didn’t have a sandlot (the boys on my street were more inclined to play Dungeons and Dragons at card tables in their basements). We didn’t watch games on TV or listen to them on the radio.

Where I fell in love with baseball was at a dusty park in Lansing, Michigan, watching the men from Calvary United Methodist play in the city church league.

I’d known the men on our team my whole life and, usually, only ever saw them in their church clothes — button up shirts, striped ties, plaid slacks. On Sunday mornings they were fresh shaved and their hair — if they had any left — was held firmly in place with Brylcreem, probably from the same tube they’d had for twenty years.

But at the ball games they had five o’clock shadows and had their well-worn Detroit Tigers caps on their heads. They dressed the way I imagine they did as boys. White t-shirts, Wranglers or Levis, and sneakers. Ivan Christian even wore suspenders so his jeans wouldn’t fall down when he jogged from base to base.

It was at those Tuesday night games that I learned that being a baseball spectator took patience. That it required a certain amount of attention paid to the subtle shift in how the catcher angled himself behind the batter and the speed of the pitcher’s throws. And it was at those games when I learned how typically stoic men could erupt in spurts of emotion over a stolen base or a bad call. How these men who sang hymns on Sunday mornings would hoot and holler when one of them made it to home.

And those nights were when I learned that men got solemn when a game didn’t go their way. Solemn and quiet and solitary. They’d drop their ball gloves in the dirt like they’d rather not pick the thing up again for the remainder of their days.

But that was also when I found out that, if given a few minutes to simmer down, they could be convinced by six year old me to grab that mitt and a spare ball for a short game of catch in the outfield before it was time to go home.

On those nights the dusk fell far too early. The day came to a close faster than I wanted. My mom called for me to get in the family station wagon before I was ready.

I could have played catch all night.

Susie Finkbeiner is the CBA bestselling author of All Manner of Things, which was selected as a 2020 Michigan Notable Book, as well as Stories That Bind Us, The Nature of Small Birds, and other novels. Susie and her husband have three children and live in West Michigan.

Connect with Susie by visiting susiefinkbeiner.com to follow her on social media or subscribe to email newsletter updates.


(1) winner will receive a tote bag, one bag of Pride and Peppermint Novel Tea, plus a $20 egift card to BakerBookHouse.com!

Full tour schedule linked below. The giveaway begins at midnight April 12, 2023 and will last through 11:59 PM EST on April 19, 2023. Winner will be notified within 2 weeks of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or risk forfeiture of prize. US only. Void where prohibited by law or logistics.