Mona went through a Paula Danziger phase during the Domestic Fiction years. I myself haven't read much of her, although one of my favorite book titles of all time is Everyone Else's Parents Said Yes . Her Amber Brown books have always sold better for me than the older chapter books you talk about. I sometimes wonder if books talking about real-life situations age a little faster than some others. Most of the books you talk about were written late 70s/early 80s. Do the assumptions and language still speak to people born at the turn of the century?
I've been thinking about taking a brief break from Chick Lit. I wanted to toss a question at you about your spouse. What was he reading in middle school? Does he have a L'Engle equivalent? For Bob it was Rosemary Sutcliff, a wonderful British historical novelist. She wrote an excellent trilogy about the Roman occupation of Britain, which starts with
The Eagle of the Ninth (recently turned into a not-so-good movie, I think). Her books cover British history from the Bronze Age on up to at least the 18th century. I'll do a longer entry on her at some point (or will ask Bob to do a guest blog). The combination of good writing and immersion in historical settings were what attracted Bob to her books. Any guys out there who had/have seriously favorite books from middle school on up? Or women who want to talk about their spouses' favorites?
All of this was on my mind tonight when a friend came to dinner with his quite remarkable 14 year-old twins. We kicked around the names of a lot of books and authors. It turned out that the book that the brother was totally in love with was Grapes of Wrath.