Sunday lit meme

OK, so I just remembered I had this great Sunday-night-lit-meme idea a couple of years ago, posted two of ’em, and then proceeded to forget all about it.

As I can’t think of anything better to write about at the conclusion of a busy weekend that involved a lot of volunteering for stuff I’ve got no business doing (e.g., putting together a newsletter, ostensibly on a one-shot basis, although I think we all know how that’s going to turn out), I’ll just see how long it takes me to lose track of a meme this time around.

Here’s your question for the week:

Who are your five favorite children’s authors, and why?

Here are mine:

1. Beverly Cleary. Nobody has ever understood what it is to be a kid quite as thoroughly or expressed it quite as vividly as Beverly Cleary. She gets it. Beezus and Ramona is pretty much the story of my life when I was a kid. (In case you are wondering, I was Beezus in that equation.)

2.  Shel Silverstein. Absolutely hilarious, totally irreverent, and squarely on his young readers’ side. I have a deep and abiding distrust of people who don’t like Shel Silverstein’s work. There’s something wrong with them.

3. Maurice Sendak. Greatest illustrator ever, and he doesn’t patronize kids. There’s an honesty in his work that commands respect.

4. Dr. Seuss. I owe a lot of my social conscience to Seuss. The Lorax is maybe the greatest thing ever.

5. Madeleine L’Engle. Compelling, intelligent books filled with compelling, intelligent characters, and the metaphysical concepts in her novels keep my thought busy and have a way of emerging from dark pools of memory at moments when I need them most. A few months ago, a close friend and I had an eerie moment in which we discovered we’d both been thinking of L’Engle’s Echthroi from A Wind in the Door in reference to a perceived enemy. (Perhaps not surprisingly, I managed to Name this individual a short time later, which obviously made life easier for everyone concerned.)

Who are the authors you loved most as a child — or appreciate the most as an adult?


One thought on “Sunday lit meme”

  1. In no particular order, my favorites are:
    1. The Spaceship Under the Apple Tree by Louis Slobodkin
    2. The Twenty-One Balloons by William Pene DuBois
    3. The Trouble With Jenny’s Ear by Oliver Butterworth
    4. Mr. Mysterious & Company by Sid Fleischman
    5. The Boxcar Children by Gertrude Chandler Warner (only the first one of the series. The later ones have gone modern and it destroyed the whole feel of it, for me, at least.)

    I have had the singular good fortune to recently acquire all but the first one on the list for our grandkids’ reading pleasure. I’ll eventually locate an affordable copy of it before I’m done. We also have gathered up a large number of the Childhood of Famous Americans for the kids. They are written for middle-schoolers and are currently very popular with the home-school crowd with very good reason. They’re well-written and chocked full of information about leaders in all kinds of fields and how they were prepared by their formative years and the things that happened to them along the way. I loved them all when I was a kid and I still enjoy reading them. My favorites were Thomas Edison, Luther Burbank, George Washington Carver and Marie Curie. I was lucky to grow up in the fifties and sixties and have parents who encouraged us to read. We faithfully went to the library every Friday night and checked out enough books to keep us busy the next week. I loved summer because I could read all I wanted.

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