This is a book about heroism, and it is a strange one. What makes Roy Hobbs potentially a hero is his immense natural gift for playing baseball. When he is quite young he already knows that he may become one of the great ones of the game, a player unmatched in his time. It is a long while before he finds a place on a major league team. His first attempt ends violently, at the hands of a crazy girl, and it is years before another chance comes.
By that time he is not far off the age at which most first-class players retire. In a few short seasons, or never, he must make the towering reputation that he feels is his right. His brief career is both comic and tragic, and ends before he has proved what his stature might have been.