Children's Literature is truly important - I've staked my career on it, writing nothing but kid's books to empower today's young people.

My SCIENCE BOOKS help children understand their world.

My BIOGRAPHIES show kids how people find inner strength when they need it most.

And my HISTORICAL NOVELS show today's kids how children of the past met challenges.

Many of my books involve fictional or historical characters living with DISABILITIES. Positive role models help kids face their own challenges as well as understanding others who rise above physical and mental handicaps.



"Look," this book urges the reader, and "Look again," at the lives and fates of some of the wildest of Western animals and of a few of the Native Americans who so revered them. Horses, the "Sacred Dogs" of the Plains Indians, wolves, grizzleys, cougars and more are illustrated with 25 of Judy Larson's spectacular paintings.

Each painting invites that a second look, for related images are hidden there for observant children and their parents to find and ponder. Often the concealed image is of an animal, Indian, or spirit who shares the same struggle for survival in The West.

A description of the artist's scratchboard technique plus activities appropriate for younger children are included. An extensive "To Learn More" section lists web references for readers eager to explore even further. A final key to every hidden image finishes the book so curious children can check to see if they've missed any small secret hidden in the amazing artwork.

The Greenwich Workshop Press, Seymour, CT, 2010
Distributed by Workman Press
For ages 7 and up.
48 pages. $16.95 ISBN 978-0-86713-150-5

Author's secret - I have watched, far in the distance, as a herd of wild horses grazed over a desert hillside where I could not find a single green plant. There is magic in their will to survive.

Were We Wrong About Dinosaurs? You Bet! That's how we learned so much about them!

Boy, Were We Wrong About Dinosaurs!
From Booklist
*Starred Review* K-Gr. 3. What could be more heartening to children than the unabashed admission that grown-ups make mistakes? Science has had its share of theories once accepted as fact but later superseded, and the mystery of dinosaur fossils seems to have brought out the imaginative side of scientists. Beginning with the ancient Chinese, who decided that dinosaur fossils came from dragons that still lived, the story fast-forwards to nineteenth-century scientists, who guessed that Iguanodon's sharp, conical bone was a spike on its head, rather than a spur on its hand. One mistaken idea after another is examined and illustrated with an ink drawing juxtaposed against a single-color background. Further information comes to light, and the information is corrected on a page showing a dinosaur drawing tinted with full-color washes. Intelligently designed and imaginatively conceived, the artwork makes the text more understandable and the whole book more beautiful. It also reflects the outlook of the text, portraying the scientists of each generation as earnest, sometimes puzzled searchers who did the best they could with the evidence available. The ending returns to the Chinese beliefs, stating that if birds are the descendants of dinosaurs, then they still live. Best of all, the closing paragraph acknowledges that the search is not over yet: the children fascinated by this book may one day find new answers to old questions about the dinosaurs. Carolyn Phelan

Reading Level 4-8 32 Pages
Dutton Juvenile, 2005
ISBN-10: 0525469788 $15.99

Author's Secret: I use a beautiful chunk of dinosaur poop - fossilized, cut, and polished - as a bookend on my printer desk. It is a rainbow-hued, odorless rock now. But thirty million years ago? Ick!

The surprising story behind Theodore Geisel, the beloved Dr. Seuss

Dr. Suess, Young Author and Artist
Just finished this book, part of the Childhood of Famous Americans series I've been reading since the '70s. The author does a wonderful job of telling Seuss' life story in a way that is interesting and neither glosses over difficult topics nor scares the young reader with them. Tough topics such as his first wife's despondency over a long-term debilitating illness, the hard experiences of anti-German-American sentiment, the logic behind Prohibition and the toll it took on his family's livelihood, and even the outcome of the Cold War are handled with impressive gentleness while still avoiding oversimplification. The illustrative scenes from his family and work life are well chosen and give a good sense of the run of his career and shifts over time. It would be easy for a series like this either to be preachy or stilted, yet the author does a fine job steering between that particular Scylla and Charybdis. This highly readable and informative book will even be going into my collection for struggling high-school readers, for whom I believe it will provide not only great interest, but also adequate challenge. Highly recommended. NCTejana (Texas, USA)

Reading level: Ages 9-12
Paperback: 192 pages
Simon & Schuster / Aladdin 2005
ISBN-10: 0689873476
ISBN-13: 978-0689873478

Author's Secret: For three yrears, I lived in Springfield Massachusetts, not far from Dr. Seuss's childhood home. Long before I knew I would ever write biographies, I took my little children to the Forest Park Zoo - the very one on the cover of my book!

Boy, Were We Wrong About Dinosaurs!, Dutton 2005
Boy, Were We Wrong About the Solar System!, Dutton 2008
Christopher Columbus, Simon & Schuster 2005
Christopher Reeve, Young Movie Star, Simon & Schuster 2007
Dandelions, Lerner, 1999
Dr. Seuss,Young Author and Artist, Simon & Schuster 2005
Earthquake! A Story of Old San Francisco, Viking 1993
Facing West; A Story of the Oregon Trail, Viking 1995
Food for Life!, Chelsea House 2003
Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Champion of Freedom, Simon & Schuster 2003
Gandhi, Young Nation Builder, Simon & Schuster 2006,
Harriet Tubman, Freedom’s Trailblazer, Simon & Schuster 2002
Helen Keller, A Light for the Blind, Viking 1989
How Plants Survive, Chelsea House 2003
Joan of Arc, DK 2008
Mother Teresa, Young Girl of the Church, Simon & Schuster 2006
My Body is Changing – Now What Do I Do?, McGraw Hill School Division 2000
My Lady, Pocahantas, Marshall Cavendish, 2005
Our Busy Tree, McGraw Hill School Division 2000
Pearl Harbor is Burning, A Story of World War II, Viking 1990

NEW: Release Date: July 7, 2015 "Boy, Were We Wrong About Weather" Dial Books for Young Readers. I've seen Sebastia Serra's illustration sketches and they are boistrous fun!

Filled with natural history facts and the Native American way of relating to animals and the environment.
Early Science
The often hilarious story of how dinosaur science evolved as theories had to change with every new fossil discovery
Why - and how - Suess created the classics we all grew up reading.

Science Blogs I Follow

Find Authors