Sarah Ellis and Arthur Ransome

We went out of the country for our two author’s this week.

50. This Canadian author trained as a librarian and children’s literature specialist. When she was in her 30’s, she started writing and her books started winning awards. Several of them have won the Sheila A. Egoff Children’s Literature Prize.  She says her favorite book is “Alice in Wonderland” written by one of our featured authors from the last trivia post. Maybe that inspired the humor in her picture book, The Queen’s Feet.

Sarah Ellis is probably best known for her award-winning novels, but she also writes books about the craft of writing. One of my favorites is From Reader to Writer:  Teaching Writing through Classic Children’s Books. In the front of the book she has used her librarian’s research skills to create a web of classic authors and whose books they read and were influenced by. It is fascinating to find out such tidbits such as C.S. Lewis read Beatrix Potter’s books.

Some books by Sarah Ellis:

51. This English author is best known for his very popular series of books about four children and their adventures during school holidays in the country. He was inspired to write the books after his own summer adventure of teaching a family friend’s five children to sail. At the time he was a respected journalist, but he quit and devoted his time to write children’s literature. His books, in turn, influenced many other children’s authors.

A summary of Arthur Ransome’s life reads like a thriller spy novel, but he is best known as the author of the Swallows and Amazons series. In his books, four children spend their summers sailing about an island without the intervention of adults. Underpinning the stories are details of real life skills, like how to pitch a tent.

Sarah Ellis writes that J.R.R. Tolkien’s children liked to read the Swallows and Amazons books.

Titles by Arthur Ransome: