Answers to Children’s Author Trivia Volume 39

Thank you to everyone who played Children’s Author Trivia last week. Now (drumroll please), the answers:

1. I bet you can get this one:  Which beloved children’s author passed away this month at the age of 92?

It’s turns out that two beloved children’s authors passed away last month,  Maurice Sendak who was 83 according to The New York Times, and Jean Craighead George, who was 92 (again, according to The New York Times).

Jean Craighead George is probably best known for her 1960 Newbery Honor book, My Side of the Mountain and her 1973 Newbery Medal book, Julie of the Wolves. Our family’s favorite is The Tarantula in My Purse: And 172 Other Wild Pets, published in 1996.

She was a prolific author, often writing about nature and animals. According to Publishers Weekly, Jean Craighead George has two new books coming out this year.  Many of her books are no longer in print, but there is a full list of titles at her official website.

2. What prolific children’s author was recently surprised when a standardized test company used an excerpt from one of his novels involving a race between a rabbit and an eggplant?

Why was he surprised? Because the test asked the students to explain the meaning of the passage and this author is all about stories that don’t make sense. In fact, he is included in a list of “The 10 Weirdest Children’s Authors of All Time.” Do you know who he may be?

I really thought this question would stump everyone, although the eggplant was a huge hint. After all, the slogan on Daniel Pinkwater s website is: “Semper admirare melongenum.” Venture on over for some podcasts and free audiobooks.

Daniel Pinkwater is also known for his e-book Bushman Lives that was published serially online, starting in September last year.

You can read all about his reaction to the standardized test question at BoingBoing and NY Daily News.

A few of Daniel Pinkwater’s many books to try:


If you are in the mood to play more Children’s Author Trivia, simply click on the icon below for a list of previous questions (or you can click on the “Children’s Author Trivia Questions” category in the left sidebar).


Children’s Author Trivia Volume 38 Answers

Today let’s celebrate poets who write for children.

1. Do you know who was named the Children’s Poet Laureate by the Poetry Foundation in May, 2011?
In May, J. Patrick Lewis was named the new Children’s Poetry Laureate by the Poetry Foundation.

This Economics professor turned children’s poet has written over seventy children’s book since his first was published in 1990, and has done over 450 author visits to schools! That is truly amazing.

A sampling of his books:

2. The website byline of our second poet reads: “Writer, Poet, Tadpole Rancher.” This poet takes along a paper mache frog named Studebaker when visiting schools. Do you know who this frog-obsessed poet is?

Kristine O’Connell George has an explanation of “tadpole ranching“at her website. It is part of the information and activities to go with her book The Great Frog Race. You can see a photograph of Studebaker the frog from on Kristine O’Connell George’s biography page. While you are visiting, be sure to listen to some of her poetry read aloud.

My review of her book Fold Me A Poem

Some of her other books:

Children’s Author Trivia Volume 37 Answers

Today we have questions about two illustrators who are quietly expanding the look of children’s picture books, literally taking illustration to a whole new dimension.

1. Our first author loves to sew and has been able to incorporate sewing into her illustrations. One of her books won the 2011 Boston Globe – Horn Book award in the picture book category. Do you recognize this illustrator?

Salley Mavor won the Boston Globe-Horn Book award with Pocketful of Posies: A Treasury of Nursery Rhymes. Her illustrations are labelled as “fabric relief,” although they are really much more that simply fabric. We have a copy of her Mary Had a Little Lamb, and the illustrations have real pebbles, beads, tiny buttons and even a tiny bell.

You can see more of her amazing work in videos on her website.

2. People magazine once said that through his work with paper engineering, our second illustrator has been turned into “… the Steven Spielberg of ascending insects.” This man, working with his wife at times, has put the “pop” into pop-up books. Do you know who he is?

David A. Carter, who often works with his wife Noelle L. Carter, has created numerous pop-up books that are favorites of young children and adults alike. There is a freshness and a feeling of joy of discovery that make his books so unique.

Here’s a short video of his work, and then a longer video of David A. Carter giving a speech.

The People magazine article

A few of David A. Carter’s many books:

Children’s Author Trivia Volume 36 Answers

Both of the authors today have fun, wacky websites.

1. Our first author started out as a cartoonist at an early age. Some of his most famous books are based on a character he developed in second grade. Now that he’s an adult, he is both an author and illustrator. His book, The Paperboy, won a Caldecott Honor. Do you know who this author is?

Dav Pilkey is the author who channels his childhood self in his books. Best known for two series that make some parents and educators cringe, Dumb Bunnies and Captain Underpants, Dav Pilkey’s website warns that it is, “too silly for grown-ups.”

The Paperboy, however, is seriously a great book. Listen to it read by Forest Whitaker.

2. Our second author has everything from celebrity photographs of a yellow stuffed creature named “Peepy” to videos of trained goldfish on her website. She’s a Chinese-American author born in 1959. Any ideas who she might be?

Lisa Yee is the author who has gathered photographs of many prominent children’s book authors posing with Peepy, including such celebrities as Julie Andrews and Henry Winkler. You should go see how many you recognize.

Are you familiar with any of Lisa Yee’s books?

Bonus question:  Do you know who the current National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature is?

Katherine Paterson is serving as the Ambassador for 2010-2011.