...Kids haven't really changed, and Cleary has a gently comic gift for getting inside their heads; she knows what gives them bubbles of happiness, as well as those universal feelings of injustice, shame or disappointment. Take Ramona Quimby, her most popular creation, who fights with her bossy big sister, Beezus (short for Beatrice), and tries to be grown up but can't help acting her age. "Cleary's books have lasted because she understands her audience," says Pat Pflieger, who teaches children's literature at West Chester University. "She knows they're sometimes confused or frightened by the world around them, and that they feel deeply about things that adults can dismiss."
31 March 2006
Happy Birthday Beverly Cleary!
Beverly Cleary's books were my absolute favorites when I was little. I read and re-read books about Ramona and her sister, and about Ralph, the mouse of The Mouse and the Motorcyle. Newsweek has a very nice article about Ms. Cleary which includes this very apt description of her work: