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Ellen B. Jackson Biography - Personal, Addresses, Career, Member, Honors Awards, Writings, Adaptations, Sidelights

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Born 0027;s librarian; stepEducation: University of California, Los Angeles, B.A., 1967; California Family Study Center, M.A., 1977. Hobbies and other interests: Hiking, tidepooling and beachcombing after a storm, playing alto, soprano, and bass recorder, fiber arts, volunteering at the library.

Addresses

Agent—c/o Author Mail, Millbrook Press/Lerner Publishing Group, 1251 Washington Ave. N., Minneapolis, MN 55401.

Career

Writer. Monte Vista Street School, Los Angeles, CA, kindergarten teacher, 1969–79; Santa Barbara County Schools, Santa Barbara, CA, curriculum writer, 1984–87.

Member

Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators, Authors Guild, Author's League, Amnesty International.

Honors Awards

National Writer's Club certificate, 1991; Children's Choice selection, International Reading Association, 1995, for The Winter Solstice; Outstanding Book designation, Child magazine, 1995, for Brown Cow, Green Grass, Yellow Mellow Sun; Book of the Year award, Family Fun magazine, 1996, for Monsters in My Mailbox; Pick of the List designation, American Booksellers Association (ABA), 1996, for The Precious Gift; ABA Pick of the List designation, and Editor's Choice, Booklist, both 1998, both for Turn of the Century; Storytelling World Award, 2001, for Scatterbrain Sam; 100 Best Books citation, Los Angeles Unified Library Services, Bank Street College Children's Book of the Year designation, and Society of School Librarians International Honor Book designation, all 2001, all for The Summer Solstice; Gold Award, Parents' Choice Foundation, 2001, for Scatterbrain Sam, and 2005, for Earth Mother; Outstanding Science Trade Book for Children citation, National Science Teachers Association/Children's Book Council (CBC), John Burroughs List of Outstanding Nature Books for Young Readers selection, and first runner-up, Society of Midland Authors Children's Nonfiction Award, all 2002, and Children's Literature Choice listee, 2003, all for Looking for Life in the Universe; Cooperative Children's Book Center honor, 2003, for The Spring Equinox; Notable Children's Trade Book in the Field of Social Studies, National Council for the Social Studies/CBC, 2004, for It's Back to School We Go.

Writings

PICTURE BOOKS

The Bear in the Bathtub, illustrated by Margot Apple, Addison-Wesley (Reading, MA), 1981.

The Grumpus under the Rug, illustrated by Scott Gustafson, Follett (Chicago, IL), 1981.

Ants Can't Dance, illustrated by Frank Remkiewicz, Macmillan (New York, NY), 1990.

Boris the Boring Boar, illustrated by Normand Chartier, Macmillan (New York, NY), 1992.

The Tree of Life (nonfiction), illustrated by Judeanne Winter, Prometheus (Buffalo, NY), 1993.

Cinder Edna, illustrated by Kevin O'Malley, Lothrop, Lee & Shepard (New York, NY), 1994.

The Winter Solstice (nonfiction), illustrated by Jan Davey Ellis, Millbrook (Brookfield, CT), 1994.

Brown Cow, Green Grass, Yellow Mellow Sun, illustrated by Victoria Raymond, Hyperion (New York, NY), 1995.

The Impossible Riddle, illustrated by Alison Winfield, Whispering Coyote Press (Boston, MA), 1995.

Monsters in My Mailbox, illustrated by Maxie Chambliss, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1995.

(Reteller) The Precious Gift: A Navajo Creation Myth, illustrated by Woodleigh Marx Hubbard, Simon & Schuster (New York, NY), 1996.

The Wacky Witch War, illustrated by Denise Brunkus, WhistleStop (Mahwah, NJ), 1996.

Why Coyote Sings to the Moon, illustrated by Eric Joyner, American Education Publishing, 1996.

The Book of Slime (nonfiction), illustrated by Jan Davey Ellis, Millbrook Press (Brookfield, CT), 1997.

Turn of the Century (nonfiction), illustrated by Jan Davey Ellis, Charlesbridge (Watertown, MA), 1998.

Here Come the Brides (nonfiction), illustrated by Carol Heyer, Walker (New York, NY), 1998.

The Autumn Equinox (nonfiction), illustrated by Jan Davey Ellis, Millbrook Press (Brookfield, CT), 2000.

Scatterbrain Sam, illustrated by Matt Faulkner, Whispering Coyote (Watertown, MA), 2001.

The Summer Solstice (nonfiction), illustrated by Jan Davey Ellis, Millbrook Press (Brookfield, CT), 2002.

The Spring Equinox: Celebrating the Greening of the Earth (nonfiction), illustrated by Jan Davey Ellis, Millbrook Press (Brookfield, CT), 2002.

Sometimes Bad Things Happen, photographs by Shelley Rotner, Millbrook Press (Brookfield, CT), 2002.

Looking for Life in the Universe: The Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence, photographs by Nic Bishop, Houghton Mifflin (Boston, MA), 2002.

It's Back to School We Go: First Day Stories from around the World, illustrated by Jan Davey Ellis, Millbrook Press (Brookfield, CT), 2003.

(Editor) Theodore Roosevelt, My Tour of Europe: By Teddy Roosevelt, Age Ten, illustrated by Catherine Brighton, Millbrook Press (Brookfield, CT), 2003.

Earth Mother, illustrated by Leo and Diane Dillon, Walker & Co. (New York, NY), 2005.

Cinnamon Brown and the Seven Dwarfs, illustrated by Elbrite Brown, Viking (New York, NY), 2006.

Worlds around Us: A Space Voyage, illustrated by Ron Miller, Millbrook Press (Minneapolis, MN), in press.

"MONTHS" SERIES; PICTURE BOOKS

January, illustrated by Pat DeWitt and Robin DeWitt, Charlesbridge (Watertown, MA), 2002.

February, illustrated by Pat DeWitt and Robin DeWitt, Charlesbridge (Watertown, MA), 2002.

March, illustrated by Kay Life, Charlesbridge (Watertown, MA), 2002.

April, illustrated by Kay Life, Charlesbridge (Watertown, MA), 2002.

May, illustrated by Kay Life, Charlesbridge (Watertown, MA), 2002.

June, illustrated by Kay Life, Charlesbridge (Watertown, MA), 2002.

July, illustrated by Pat DeWitt and Robin DeWitt, Charlesbridge (Watertown, MA), 2002.

August, illustrated by Pat DeWitt and Robin DeWitt, Charlesbridge (Watertown, MA), 2002.

September, illustrated by Pat DeWitt and Robin DeWitt, Charlesbridge (Watertown, MA), 2002.

October, illustrated by Pat DeWitt and Robin DeWitt, Charlesbridge (Watertown, MA), 2002.

November, illustrated by Pat DeWitt and Robin DeWitt, Charlesbridge (Watertown, MA), 2002.

December, illustrated by Pat DeWitt and Robin DeWitt, Charlesbridge (Watertown, MA), 2002.

OTHER

Stay on the Safe Side (grades 5-6 and 7-8), Office of Criminal Justice Planning (Sacramento, CA), 1985.

Stay on the Safe Side (grades K-4), Office of Criminal Justice Planning (Sacramento, CA), 1987.

Top of the World, Children's Story Scripts, 1991.

Quick Wits and Whiskers, Children's Story Scripts, 1991.

Families Are for Finding, Children's Story Scripts, 1991.

Earthquake Safety, Horizon (Montreal, Quebec, Canada), 1991.

Household Safety, Horizon (Montreal, Quebec, Canada), 1991.

Stranger Danger (safety advice for kids), Horizon (Montreal, Quebec, Canada), 1991.

Contributor to newspapers, including Critical Times; contributor of children's stories to periodicals, including Humpty Dumpty's. Author of how-to manual How to Start a Pet Grooming Business; author of multimedia history book for computer game Where in Time Is Carmen Sandiego?, Version 3.0, Broderbund Software, 1997.

Adaptations

Cinder Edna was adapted as a musical stage production produced in Hopkins, MN, 2005–06.

Sidelights

Creating children's books that range from cautionary tales to humorous and informative nonfiction picture books, Ellen B. Jackson is noted for a simple, direct style that appeals to very young children and beginning readers. "Jackson is a gifted writer who can make the simplest language rhyming and interesting," noted Lauralyn Persson in School Library Journal. The daughter of a children's librarian, Jackson is well equipped for a career in children's writing. A decade-long career as a kindergarten teacher, as well as a stint as a curriculum writer for the Santa Barbara County Schools, have also helped to prepare her for the job of imparting information to young children concisely and wittily.

Jackson's first book, The Bear in the Bathtub, is a funny tale of a young boy, Andrew, who hates to take baths, but learns to appreciate tubby time when a huge bear takes over the bathtub. Unable to bathe for days, Andrew soon becomes so dirty that his friends no longer want to be near him. Unfortunately, no one—not his parents, the police, or even the fire fighters—can re-Based on a Welsh folktale, Jackson's Scatterbrain Sam finds a young man stumbling upon true love while tracking down the ingredients for a stew that will make him smarter. (Illustration by Matt Faulkner.)move the bear from the tub, leaving the boy to finally solve the problem. "Jackson accents the mirth by relating the nonsense with a straight face," wrote a contributor to Publishers Weekly. The Bear in the Bathtub was described as an "amusing, well-written story [that] reads aloud well," by Pamela Warren Stebbins in a School Library Journal review.

The Grumpus under the Rug is the tale of a mother who refuses to believe that the Grumpus under the rug is causing the mischief in her house. Even though her little boy keeps assuring his mother that the naughty Grumpus is there, she blames her son for the Grumpus's messy habits. Fortunately, the mother finally discovers the Grumpus by looking under the rug before the mischievous creature can disappear, and she throws it into the sky, ridding her home of it. A reviewer for Booklist said that Jackson's "spare story, told in mocktale vein, plunges readers into the crux of its matter."

Another boy has trouble convincing his parents to believe him in Ants Can't Dance. Jonathan finds a dancing ant and brings it home to show his parents, but once he is home, the ant refuses to perform. His parents, skeptical to begin with, remain unconvinced, especially when the next day Jonathan brings home a talking peanut that becomes mute in front of them. Jonathan finally discovers a whistling stone that does perform for everybody, even television reporters. A reviewer for Publishers Weekly called the book a "whimsical tale" and added that this "lighthearted picture book … will be enjoyed by parents and children alike," though the "fresh, witty prose of the opening pages peters out, and the plot and premise become repetitive." Marie Orlando echoed these remarks in a School Library Journal review, calling the book "a slight but amusing story," and concluding that "colorful cartoon illustrations blend well with the story, and youngsters will enjoy the clever lad's ultimate triumph." John Murray, reviewing Ants Can't Dance in Magpies, found the "repetitive language structures and rhyme accompanying each episode of the story make this a fairly useful book for early reading," while "well marked dialogue and a plot with the three episodes so common in folktales allow for predictability of form and ready dramatization."

There is a lesson in the humor of Boris the Boring Boar, in which Boris discovers that it pays to listen. Boris's friends are so tired of his boring monologue about how great he is that no one wants to be around him. Feeling lonely, he meets a smooth-talking wolf who ends up tying him to a tree while preparing to cook the boring bear for dinner. Boris, however, uses his wits to save himself by complimenting the wolf on his fine, sharp teeth and handsome coat. The wolf, as lonely as Boris, eats up these compliments instead of Boris, and sets the fast-talking bear free. After this experience, Boris learns an important lesson, and when he then encounters Pansy Pig, he asks about her day instead of describing his. Martha Topol wrote in School Library Journal that the "text makes good use of its verbal pun without going overboard," and that in spite of "some quick transitions, the story is well developed and has a satisfying conclusion…. Children will not be bored with Boris." A writer for Kirkus Reviews remarked that Boris "is a quintessential bore," and that whether or not "it prompts embarrassed self-appraisal, the comical dialogue here is as much fun as the deft caricatures in the well-crafted art."

Sometimes Bad Things Happen is designed less to show a lesson than it is to help children deal with sad events. Filled with photographs of emergency workers and people helping each other, Sometimes Bad Things Happen covers feelings of sadness or fear or anger, offering children comfort at times of struggle. Noting that the title is "undisguised bibliotherapy," John Peters of Booklist felt that Jackson's book will "offer comfort in a more visually appealing way" than more old-fashioned titles on emotions. Lucinda Snyder Whitehurst, writing for School Library Journal, complimented the book's "brief text and crisp, color photos."

The first day of school is the topic of It's Back to School We Go. Instead of discussing the back-to-school anxieties many American children face, Jackson takes a broader world view, showing children from eleven different countries returning to school. With children from such countries as Kazakhstan, China, and Kenya, It's Back to School We Go presents U.S. readers with information about the foods that children in other countries eat and the types of games they play at school. "This multinational approach provides material for comparing and contrasting cultures," noted Lynda Ritterman in her School Library Journal review.

Jackson retells traditional tales and myths in picture books such as Cinder Edna, an alternative Cinderella story; The Precious Gift, a Navajo creation myth; and The Impossible Riddle, based on a Russian folktale. In Cinder Edna Jackson takes a feminist approach to the traditional story, making "the traditional passive Cinderella … the neighbor of liberated Cinder Edna," explained Booklist contributor Hazel Rochman. While Cinderella needs a fairy godmother to transport her to the ball, the self-reliant Cinder Edna gets herself there. Although she is not beautiful, Cinder Edna is spunky and full of zip. Bored by the prince, she is attracted to his younger brother, Rupert, a young man who is more interested in ecology than in high fashion. Rochman noted that "humor softens the commentary" in Jackson's politically correct tale, and added that there is "fun in the literal reduction of the fantasy as well as in the transformed role models." A reviewer for Publishers Weekly commented that the "Cinderella send-up is full of kid-pleasing jokes and, besides, it's never too early to discover the hazards of codependence." Reviewing the book for School Library Journal, Susan Hepler called Cinder Edna a "clever, double story" and concluded that kids "will love this version for its humor and vibrant artwork."

In The Precious Gift Jackson retells part of the Dineh creation myth in which a lowly snail is responsible for bringing water to an arid land. This story has a "relevant ecological theme," according to a critic for Publishers Weekly, who also remarked that "the story is clever in its explanation of how other creatures, such as the turtle and frog, acquired their attributes." The Impossible Riddle is an adaptation of a Russian folktale about a tsar who loves his daughter and her potato pancakes to distraction. He vows never to let her marry unless a suitor can answer the tsar's prized riddle. A handsome suitor appears, and manages to outsmart the tsar and win the hand of his talented daughter.

Basing a new story on a traditional Welsh folktale, Jackson set her hero in small-town America for Scatterbrain Sam. Sam wants brains, but cannot figure out how to organize his thoughts. Widder Woman, the town's wisest woman, agrees to make a potion with which she will glue Sam's brain together. When Sam's sweetheart, Maizie Mae, is at risk due to his potion, he is willing to make the sacrifice to save his lady love. As it happens, Maizie is an on-the-ball figure, so the Widder Woman tells Sam he has some brains after all: Maizie's. The story "is sure to entertain scatterbrained and cool-headed readers alike," stated a reviewer for Publishers Weekly. Beth Tegart, writing in School Library Journal, considered the book "a funny, folksy tall tale filled with exaggeration and sly humor," while Booklist reviewer GraceAnne A. DeCandido felt that Sam "heads straight for the funny bone—and the heart."

Earth Mother, while not a traditional story, is an environmental tale told in a folklore style. The Earth Mother of the title keeps watch over all of creation, walking throughout the land and singing. She encounters a man who is glad for many of the things Earth Mother provides but wishes she could do something about the mosquitoes that bite him. Frog is grateful for the mosquitoes, which he eats, but wishes man would stop eating him. Mosquito is happy that man provides his food, but wishes frog would go away. The story, which is illustrated by award winning artists Diane and Leo Dillon, has little action, but shows a circular pattern of nature. "The Dillons' illustrations capture the spiritual aura of Jackson's graceful words," wrote a Publishers Weekly contributor. A critic for Kirkus Reviews called the story "beautiful and satisfying; its own teachable moment." Noting that some readers might be frustrated by the story's leisurely pace, Susan Lissim noted in School Library Journal that "reading it a few times helps readers realize the book's calming effect."

In addition to fiction, Jackson has produced several highly praised nonfiction books in which she examines topics ranging from the winter solstice to slime. A freelance writer for over two decades, she once told SATA: "I live in a house one block from the beach in Santa Barbara, California, with my husband and schnoodle, Abby. I read in many different fields including science, sociology, fiction, eastern philosophy, and history. I do volunteer work for Amnesty International and the Peace Resource Center in Santa Barbara." Her wide-ranging interests have led her to bring science and cultural topics to young readers in picture-book format. She also provides a wealth of information, such as reading guides an experiments, for teachers and parents, using her books in educational settings, on her home page.

In The Tree of Life Jackson explains evolution to young readers, introducing the concept by examining the origins of life and how it has diversified. Roger Sutton, writing in the Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books, called the book "a mostly successful attempt to explain the complex theory," adding that the vocabulary "is kept simple … and the progression is logical." Reviewing the same book for Science Books and Films, Erik Scully remarked that Jackson's "language is as nontechnical as possible, and the concept of natural se-lection is implied throughout the text." "The book is generally successful in presenting the concept of evolution," the critic added, "but the emphasis on a nontechnical presentation sometimes results in a very vague discussion."

Among Jackson's other science books are The Winter Solstice and The Book of Slime. In the former, she combines science and cultural history, looking at the physical mechanics that bring about the shortest day of the year and then examining a variety of customs surrounding the winter solstice as practiced by ancient Britons, Romans, and Native Americans. "Teachers will value the book's multicultural approach as well as its simple, readable text," noted Booklist reviewer Carolyn Phelan.

Reflecting the traditions of many ancient cultures, Earth Mother describes the god-like being who gives life and nurture to all Earth's creatures. (Illustration by Leo and Diane Dillon.)

Kay McPherson commented in School Library Journal that Jackson does "a solid job of explaining various peoples' attitudes about the winter solstice and related rituals and traditions." Animal secretions is the subject of The Book of Slime, in which Jackson details the beneficial qualities of this seemingly gross substance. From lubricant for snails and slugs to recipes for edible slime bread, the book leavens its yucky topic with jokes, activities, and a short story. "Place this book with its green and black slimy cover face-out and it will simply ooze off the shelves," suggested a critic for Kirkus Reviews.

Jackson looks at culture and history in both Here Come the Brides and Turn of the Century. In the former book she discusses wedding costumes and customs from around the world. Kathleen Isaacs, writing in School Library Journal, called the book a "lavishly illustrated easy-to-read introduction." Here Come the Brides includes information about varying cultural ideas, from the appropriate color for the bride to traditional kinds of flowers and food. In Turn of the Century Jackson takes advantage of millennium fever to look at different centuries from the point of view of contemporary, fictional children. "This informative picture book introduces youngsters to history through 11 fictitious children, each living in a different period," explained Susan Knell in School Library Journal, dubbing the book "a fine resource to add to any social studies or history curriculum and a delightful and timely choice as the year 2000 approaches." A critic for Kirkus Reviews called the work an "ambitious book about children from the past, present, and near future…. An astute and provocative book for browsing, or for tying into assignments."

After the success of The Winter Solstice, Jackson went on to produce three more titles about the science and cultural histories of the seasonal peaks. With The Autumn Equinox, called "informative and succinct" by Jody McCoy in School Library Journal, she introduces readers to festivals all over the world that celebrate autumn. The Summer Solstice discusses the longest day of the year, and provides a traditional solstice story from Hawaii. Booklist reviewer Carolyn Phelan called the title "an attractive resource" while Patricia Manning, writing in School Library Journal, considered the book "an interesting conglomeration of folkloric traditions, science, and myth." The end of winter and beginning of spring are celebrated in The Spring Equinox, which completes the season quartet. Carolyn Phelan, reviewing this work for Booklist, considered it "a spirited overview of spring celebrations around the world." Writing for School Library Journal, Lisa Gangemi Kropp called The Spring Equinox an "informative look at the vernal equinox."

Jackson crosses biography with science in Looking for Life in the Universe: The Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence. By telling the story of Dr. Jill Tarter, the scientist on whom noted astrophysicist Carl Sagan based the protagonist of his novel Contact, Jackson introduces young readers to the concept of the Phoenix-based project of the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI), for which Tarter is the director. While there are other titles for young readers that talk about the possibility of life beyond Earth, "few focus on the scientists as Jackson does," according to Ann G. Brouse in School Library Journal. Brouse concluded that the title, filled with photographs by Nic Bishop, is "an exciting, visually awesome look at frontier science." John Peters wrote in Booklist that "readers will come away with a clear sense of the lure of this frustrating but exciting endeavor."

There is no science in My Tour of Europe: By Teddy Roosevelt, Age Ten, which Jackson edited, but there is plenty of history. When his family traveled through Europe, ten-year-old Theodore Roosevelt kept a diary of his experiences, and in this book Jackson presents excerpts from this document that show the president's childhood view of Europe. Susan Lissim, reviewing the title for School Library Journal, wrote that Jackson's "delightful collection of excerpts" come together to make an "interesting and informative book."

Jackson once told SATA: "Most of my childhood was spent in Glendale, California. My mother worked for Walt Disney Studios for over thirty years. In the early years, Walt would sometimes give her a ride to work. He was that kind of guy. My mother loved books, music, art, and learning, and she made sure I knew all the classics of children's literature. I grew up with a lot of family trauma, and I coped by retreating into the world of books. My sixth grade teacher complained that I read too much. I still do.

"I went to various schools in southern California and prolonged my education as long as possible because I love learning. After graduating from UCLA, I discovered there were no jobs for English/psychology/history majors. A friend told me about a special program in a nearby school district to train teachers, and I applied and was accepted. Due to overcrowding, some teachers in this program, including me, had no classrooms in which to conduct classes. With no instructional materials, I bought or made everything myself. I taught kindergarten for one year out on the playground in rain, wind, and 100-degree heat.

"In spite of this, I loved teaching. Monday was my favorite day of the week. I decided to go back to school, make teaching my life's work, and earn a degree that would get me a classroom of my own. I got the proper credentials, and taught school for ten years. During that time, I picked up an M.A. in family counseling and traveled in Europe, the Amazon jungle, and the Galapagos Islands. (On the Galapagos, I stayed for a week at a 'hotel' with a unique decor—walls covered with large, hairy-legged spiders.)

"At the end of ten years, I moved to Santa Barbara to take care of my mother, who was ill. It occurred to me that writing might be fun. Having read many books to my students over the years, I thought I could write a children's book if I tried. It seemed so easy. My first book accumulated a stack of form rejection slips in no time. Nevertheless, I kept reworking the same book; I was convinced it was a work of genius (it wasn't; trust me). It was about a snail. While working on this particular book, another idea popped into my head one day. I tried to shoo it away, but it wouldn't be shooed. With no hope of publication, I sent the second book out, and Addison-Wesley promptly took it. Well, not so promptly, actually. It took them a year to make up their minds. This book developed a cult following among my relatives. It was also enjoyed, though rarely bought, by my friends and acquaintances.

"Since then I've written manuals (How to Start a Pet Grooming Business), nonfiction books (The Winter Solstice), curriculum (Stay on the Safe Side), and worked on multimedia projects (Where in Time Is Carmen Sandiego?). My role of caretaker has continued. Three years ago, my elderly aunt and uncle moved to Santa Barbara, where they acquired a house and an orchard. Helping them out and supervising the orchard has been both frustrating and rewarding.

"My life is a busy but happy one. I write almost every day. My eccentric miniature schnauzer, Bailey, sleeps under my computer desk and makes cozy dog noises while I work. I love to go beach combing or explore the back hills of Santa Barbara. Currently I volunteer at the local library one day a week. I occasionally cook meals at a local homeless shelter and walk dogs for the Dog Adoption Welfare Group. In my spare time (ha!) I read and play the recorder. Despite periodic bouts of sloth and torpor, I manage to keep it all going."

Biographical and Critical Sources

PERIODICALS

Booklist, December 15, 1981, review of The Grumpus under the Rug, p. 553; November 15, 1992, p. 608; February 15, 1994, Carolyn Phelan, review of The Winter Solstice, pp. 1085-1086; March 15, 1994, Hazel Rochman, review of Cinder Edna, p. 1373; June 1, 1995, p. 1786; January 1, 1996, p. 845; March 15, 1997, p. 1246; July, 1998 p. 1877; January 1, 1999, review of Turn of the Century, p. 783; April 1, 2001, Carolyn Phelan, review of The Summer Solstice, p. 1459; August, 2001, GraceAnne A. DeCandido, review of Scatterbrain Sam, p. 2130; April 15, 2002, Carolyn Phelan, review of The Spring Equinox, p. 1397; November 15, 2002, John Peters, review of Sometimes Bad Things Happen, p. 605; December 1, 2002, review of Looking for Life in the Universe, p. 684.

Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books, December, 1993, Roger Sutton, review of The Tree of Life, pp. 123-124; June, 1996, pp. 339-340.

Kirkus Reviews, September 1, 1992, review of Boris the Boring Boar, p. 1130; April 1, 1994, p. 480; April 1, 1995, p. 470; January 15, 1997, review of The Book of Slime, p. 143; April 1, 1998, p. 496; June 15, 1998, review of Turn of the Century, p. 895; August 1, 2005, review of Earth Mother, p. 850.

Magpies, November, 1991, John Murray, review of Ants Can't Dance, p. 27.

Publishers Weekly, April 17, 1981, review of The Bear in the Bathtub, p. 62; April 19, 1991, review of Ants Can't Dance, p. 66; February 14, 1994, review of Cinder Edna, p. 88; April 24, 1995, p. 70; April 1, 1996, review of The Precious Gift, p. 76; July 6, 1998, p. 62; June 25, 2001, review of Scatterbrain Sam, p. 71; September 22, 2003, review of It's Back to School We Go!, p. 106; October 27, 2003, review of My Tour of Europe: By Teddy Roosevelt, Age Ten, p. 69; July 18, 2005, review of Earth Mother, p. 204; July 18, 2005, review of Earth Mother, p. 204.

School Library Journal, September, 1981, Pamela Warren Strebbins, review of The Bear in the Bathtub, p. 109; July, 1991, Marie Orlando, review of Ants Can't Dance, p. 58; September, 1992, Martha Topol, review of Boris the Boring Boar, p. 206; April, 1994, Susan Helper, review of Cinder Edna, p. 107; April, 1994, Kay McPherson, review of The Winter Solstice, pp. 138-139; May, 1995, Lauralyn Persson, review of Brown Cow, Green Grass, Yellow Mellow Sun, pp. 85-86; May, 1996, p. 105; June, 1997, p. 108; April, 1998, Kathleen Isaacs, review of Here Come the Brides, p. 118; September, 1998, Susan Knell, review of Turn of the Century, p. 174; November, 2000, Jody McCoy, review of The Autumn Equinox, p. 144; May, 2001, Patricia Manning, review of The Summer Solstice, p. 143; July, 2001, Beth Tegart, review of Scatterbrain Sam, p. 83; June, 2002, Lisa Gangemi Kropp, review of The Spring Equinox, p. 120; December, 2002, Ann G. Brouse, review of Looking for Life in the Universe, p. 162; February, 2003, Lucinda Snyder Whitehurst, review of Sometimes Bad Things Happen, p. 132; May, 2003, John Peters, review of Looking for Life in the Universe, p. 102; June, 2003, Susan Lissim, review of My Tour of Europe, p. 129; October, 2003, review of Sometimes Bad Things Happen, p. S28, and review of Looking for Life in the Universe, p. S47; November, 2003, Lynda Ritterman, review of It's Back to School We Go, p. 126; July, 2004, Lisa G. Kropp, review of It's Back to School We Go, p. 45; September, 2005, Susan Lissim, review of Earth Mother, p. 174.

Science Books and Films, March, 1994, Erik Scully, review of The Tree of Life, p. 47.

Voice of Youth Advocates, April, 2003, review of Looking for Life in the Universe, p. 77.

ONLINE

Ellen Jackson Home Page, http://www.ellenjackson.net (January 18, 2006).

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