“One of the great values of literature is its ability to convey experiences different from our own, to let us see inside the heads of characters from different time periods, different countries, different races, classes, and, yes, ages. Every time a grownup reads a YA book, they widen their perspective in important ways.”
Amid recent articles dismissing recent works of young adult fiction as unimportant, embarrassing and works of “juvenilia”, comes Julie Beck’s piece in today’s TheAtlantic.com. The Adult Lessons of YA Fiction discusses the importance of revisiting the “elemental truths” found in the YA fiction that we once loved as kids and how they can be every bit as meaningful to us as adults.
We couldn’t agree more.
Michael A. Banks, writer and editor of science fiction and non-fiction recently shared with us how Stephen Meader’s Bulldozer inspired him at an early age and helped shape his goals as a writer:
I first read Bulldozer in 1959, at the very beginning of the Space Age. Anything seemed possible, what with satellites orbiting Earth and men to follow. I was constantly exploring how things worked and trying to do more with my chemistry set and microscope than was possible. I built models, I read books, magazines and newspapers. With my friends I even built miniature Interstate highways on the dirt floor of an abandoned barn, using our Doepke and Tonka bulldozers, graders and other toys. My area had no organized sports to offer, and even the pickup baseball games I so enjoyed were given rather short shrift as I packed all my other activities–including Scouts–into days that always seemed to need more hours.
Through all of this I had a fine example–a role model–to inspire me to keep going and try new things: young Bill Crane and his bulldozer. This inspiration carried on into my young adult years, when Bill’s failures as well as his successes began to ring true. With the realization that I had no real support and would face failures came more inspiration, because that was exactly Bill’s situation. Decades after reading Bulldozer, I can look back over my own doubts and opposition, and feel good that I faced them and made it through them to succeed–just as Bill Crane and Stephen W. Meader himself did. Overcoming the doubts and opposition were in themselves successes, and further inspired me to continue striving for my goal: I became a writer, and next year will see my 45th book published.,
It’s officially summer.
It’s the time of year when teenagers sleep until noon, swimming pools rarely stay tranquil, and friends linger on patios watching children run barefoot through the neighborhood way past dark. Its also when many people perfect the art of slowing down and relaxing with a good book.
Although some of our favorite Meader summer-ish titles such as Topsail Island Treasure and Everglades Adventure didn’t make the list, TIME editors have compiled a list of The 12 All-Time Great Summer Reads. The perfect way to kick-off your summer reading.
Now all you need is the hammock.
This explains the towering pile of books in the corner.
In the process of doing some promotional work for Stephen Meader’s Lumberjack, one of our currently discounted hardcover titles, I came across a vintage review of the book by the New York Herald Tribune, which was written before the newspaper ceased publication in 1966. A little throwback, and the review still holds up some 50 years later!
“This is the sort of book, rare today, which is equally enthralling to adults and children. Dan Garland is a very real and very human boy and his adventures and experiences are completely absorbing. This really is a grand book and one it would not be possible to recommend too highly.”
It may be a little early to be thinking about Mother’s Day and Father’s Day. After all, I still haven’t dragged out a single Easter decoration with five days to go. A record, I believe. However, I am in planning mode for our spring book sale. With 44 Stephen Meader titles to choose from, I thought it might be fun to give our fans a say in the selection. So readers, which titles would you like most to see included in our next book sale?
Just in time to start your weekend off with a laugh, imagining how you could incorporate these into everyday conversation. These are fantastic. Personally, I’m giddy to learn about the word ‘resistentialism’ as I would wager money that both my car and hair have this on any given day.
Obsolete Words That Should Have Never Gone Out of Style
Receiving notes like this one makes my day. I love that Stephen Meader’sbooks delighted so many readers as children and that their republication brings back the joy all over again. We love our customers!
“I would also like to thank you for your efforts to bring these books back.
I’m 44 and remember reading Bulldozer when I was six. The first big book I
ever read and loved it!” ~J.R.
There is a great article in this month’s issue of The Atlantic (March 2013): Serial Thriller by Megan Garber that discusses the surprising rise in popularity of the serial story. As in the opposite of instant gratification. As in you have to wait for the cliffhanger to be resolved. Its evident in the popularity of serial television shows such as The Walking Dead and Breaking Bad (just two of many) as well as in movies and books (Twilight Saga, Hunger Games).
In today’s world where we have access to almost anything, instantly with the click of a button, I must admit that I found this to be refreshing news. I rather like the thought that, despite all of the technological advancements that we have made towards instant acquisition, we haven’t lost the thrill of anticipation or as Garber puts it, “the anticipatory pleasure that can come from the simple act of waiting.”
What are your favorite serial stories?