Happy 100th Birthday, Beverly Cleary!

birthday cake

Add to Beverly Cleary’s awards and accomplishments: reaching the century mark. She says she “didn’t plan on it,” in typical dry humor. It’s nice to see the revival of appreciation for her contributions to children’s literature over the past few weeks. I was going to collect them all and present them here, but holy cow, there’s a lot of them.  I’ll settle for a few.

Here’s a great interview in the Washington Post, and another great article and interview by Nicholas Kristof in the New York Times.

My buddy Kurt in Portland (where most of Cleary’s books take place) sent me this lovely appreciation by Oregon Public Broadcasting.

NPR’s All Thing Considered did a story, and The New Yorker, and a bunch of others. I’ve especially enjoyed the entire series of articles at Horn Book, and have been saving mine for today. Here’s my favorite line (but please read the whole thing).

[H]ere is the great truth that courses through Beverly Cleary’s books: even a happy childhood is not an easy one.

I celebrated by teaching my son how to turn Qs into cats, and we’ll have pancakes and carrot salad for dinner.


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