Jean (Guttery) Fritz (1915-) Biography
Personal, Addresses, Career, Honors Awards, Writings, Sidelights
Born 1915, in Hankow, China; moved to United States c. 1928; Education: Wheaton College, A.B., 1937; attended Columbia University. Hobbies and other interests: Reading, traveling.
Agent—Gina MacCoby Literary Agency, 1123 Broadway, Ste. 1010, New York, NY 10010.
Writer of historical biographies and novels for young people. Silver Burdett Co., New York, NY, research assistant, 1937-41; Dobbs Ferry Library, Dobbs Ferry, NY, children's librarian, 1955-57; Jean Fritz Writers' Workshops, Katonah, NY, founder and instructor, 1962-70; Board of Co-operative Educational Service, Westchester County, NY, teacher, 1971-73; Appalachian State University, Boone, NC, faculty member, summer, 1980-82. Lecturer.
New York Times Outstanding Book of the Year citations, 1973, for And Then What Happened, Paul Revere?, 1974, for Why Don't You Get a Horse, Sam Adams?, 1975, for Where Was Patrick Henry on the 29th of May?, 1976, for What's the Big Idea, Ben Franklin?, 1981, for Traitor: The Case of Benedict Arnold, and 1982, for Homesick: My Own Story; Boston Globe/ Horn Book honor book citations, 1974, for And Then What Happened, Paul Revere?, 1976, for Will You Sign Here, John Hancock?, and 1980, for Stonewall; named outstanding Pennsylvania author, Pennsylvania School Library Association, 1978; Honor Award for Nonfiction, Children's Book Guild, 1978, and 1979, for "body of her creative writing"; American Book Award nomination, 1980, for Where Do You Think You're Going, Christopher Columbus?, and 1981, for Traitor: The Case of Benedict Arnold; LL.D., Washington and Jefferson College, 1982, Wheaton College, 1987; Child Study Award, and Christopher Award, both 1982; Newbery Honor Book Award, American Book Award, and Boston Globe/Horn Book honor book designation, all 1983, all for Homesick: My Own Story; Boston Globe/ Horn Book Nonfiction Award, 1984, for The Double Life of Pocahontas, and 1990, for The Great Little Madison; Regina Award, 1985; Laura Ingalls Wilder Award, 1986; Orbis Pictus Award, National Council of English Teachers, 1989, for The Great Little Madison; Knickerbocker Award for Juvenile Literature, 1992; National Humanities Medal, National Endowment for the Humanities, 2003. Many of Fritz's books have been named notable books by the American Library Association.
Bunny Hopwell's First Spring, illustrated by Rachel Dixon, Wonder (New York, NY), 1954.
Help Mr. Willy Nilly, illustrated by Jean Tamburine, Treasure (New York, NY), 1954.
Fish Head, illustrated by Marc Simont, Coward (New York, NY), 1954.
Hurrah for Jonathan!, illustrated by Violet La Mont, A. Whitman (Racine, WI), 1955.
121 Pudding Street, illustrated by Sofia, Coward (New York, NY), 1955.
Growing Up, illustrated by Elizabeth Webbe, Rand McNally (Chicago, IL), 1956.
The Late Spring, illustrated by Erik Blegvad, Coward (New York, NY), 1957.
The Cabin Faced West, illustrated by Feodor Rojankovsky, Coward (New York, NY), 1958.
(With Tom Clute) Champion Dog, Prince Tom, illustrated by Ernest Hart, Coward (New York, NY), 1958.
The Animals of Doctor Schweitzer, illustrated by Douglas Howland, Coward (New York, NY), 1958.
How to Read a Rabbit, illustrated by Leonard Shortall, Coward (New York, NY), 1959.
Brady, illustrated by Lynd Ward, Coward (New York, NY), 1960.
Tap, Tap Lion, 1, 2, 3, illustrated by Leonard Shortall, Coward (New York, NY), 1962.
San Francisco, illustrated by Emil Weiss, Rand McNally (Chicago, IL), 1962.
I, Adam, illustrated by Peter Burchard, Coward (New York, NY), 1963.
Magic to Burn, illustrated by Beth Krush and Joe Krush, Coward (New York, NY), 1964.
Surprise Party (reader), illustrated by George Wiggins, Initial Teaching Alphabet Publications, 1965.
The Train (reader), illustrated by Jean Simpson, Grosset (New York, NY), 1965.
Early Thunder, illustrated by Lynd Ward, Coward (New York, NY), 1967.
George Washington's Breakfast, illustrated by Paul Galdone, Coward (New York, NY), 1969.
And Then What Happened, Paul Revere?, illustrated by Margot Tomes, Coward (New York, NY), 1973.
Why Don't You Get a Horse, Sam Adams?, illustrated by Trina Schart Hyman, Coward (New York, NY), 1974.
Where Was Patrick Henry on the 29th of May?, illustrated by Margot Tomes, Coward (New York, NY), 1975.
Who's That Stopping on Plymouth Rock?, illustrated by J. B. Handelsman, Coward (New York, NY), 1975.
Will You Sign Here, John Hancock?, illustrated by Trina Schart Hyman, Coward (New York, NY), 1976.
What's the Big Idea, Ben Franklin?, illustrated by Margot Tomes, Coward (New York, NY), 1976.
The Secret Diary of Jeb and Abigail: Growing up in America, 1776-1783, illustrated by Kenneth Bald and Neil Boyle, Reader's Digest Association (Pleasantville, NY), 1976.
Can't You Make Them Behave, King George?, illustrated by Tomie de Paola, Coward (New York, NY), 1977.
Brendan the Navigator, illustrated by Enrico Arno, Coward (New York, NY), 1979.
Stonewall, illustrated by Stephen Gammell, Putnam (New York, NY), 1979.
Where Do You Think You're Going, Christopher Columbus?, illustrated by Margot Tomes, Putnam (New York, NY), 1980.
The Man Who Loved Books, illustrated by Trina Schart Hyman, Putnam (New York, NY), 1981.
Traitor: The Case of Benedict Arnold, illustrated with engravings and prints, Putnam (New York, NY), 1981.
Back to Early Cape Cod, Acorn, 1981.
The Good Giants and the Bad Pukwudgies (folktale), illustrated by Tomie de Paola, Putnam (New York, NY), 1982.
Homesick: My Own Story, illustrated by Margot Tomes, Putnam (New York, NY), 1982, reprinted, Paperstar, 1999.
The Double Life of Pocahontas, illustrated by Ed Young, Putnam (New York, NY), 1983.
China Homecoming, illustrated with photographs by Mike Fritz, Putnam (New York, NY), 1985.
Make Way for Sam Houston!, illustrated by Elise Primavera, Putnam (New York, NY), 1986.
Shh! We're Writing the Constitution, illustrated by Tomie de Paola, Putnam (New York, NY), 1987.
China's Long March: 6,000 Miles of Danger, illustrated by Yang Zhr Cheng, Putnam (New York, NY), 1988.
The Great Little Madison, Putnam (New York, NY), 1989.
Bully for You, Teddy Roosevelt!, illustrated by Mike Wimmer, Putnam (New York, NY), 1991.
George Washington's Mother, illustrated by DyAnne DiSalvo-Ryan, Putnam (New York, NY), 1992.
(With others) The World in 1492, illustrated by Stefano Vitale, Holt (New York, NY), 1992.
Surprising Myself, photographs by Andrea Fritz Pfleger, Owen (Katonah, NY), 1992.
The Great Adventure of Christopher Columbus: A Pop-up Book, illustrated by Tomie de Paola, Putnam & Grosset (New York, NY), 1992.
Just a Few Words, Mr. Lincoln: The Story of the Gettysburg Address, illustrated by Charles Robinson, Grosset & Dunlap (New York, NY), 1993.
Around the World in a Hundred Years: From Henry the Navigator to Magellan, illustrated by Anthony Bacon Venti, Putnam (New York, NY), 1994.
Harriet Beecher Stowe and the Beecher Preachers, illustrated with engravings and prints, Putnam (New York, NY), 1994.
You Want Women to Vote, Lizzie Stanton?, illustrated by DyAnne DiSalvo-Ryan, Putnam (New York, NY), 1995.
Why Not, Lafayette?, illustrated by Ronald Himler, Putnam (New York, NY), 1999.
Leonardo's Horse, illustrated by Hudson Talbott, Putnam (New York, NY), 2001.
The Lost Colony of Roanoke, illustrated by Hudson Talbott, Putnam (New York, NY), 2004.
Cast for a Revolution: Some American Friends and Enemies, 1728-1814 (adult biography), Houghton-Mifflin (Boston, MA), 1972.
Contributor to books, including William Zinsser, editor, Worlds of Childhood: The Art and Craft of Writing for Children, Houghton-Mifflin, 1990; author of introduction to Flaming Arrows, The Perilous Road, and The Buffalo Knife, by William O. Steele, Harcourt, 2004. Book reviewer, San Francisco Chronicle, 1941-43, and New York Times, beginning 1970. Contributor of short stories to periodicals, including Seventeen, Redbook, and New Yorker.
Fritz's papers are housed in a permanent collection in the Children's Literature Collection at the University of Oregon, Eugene, and included in the Kerlan Collection at the University of Minnesota, and in a collection at the University of Southern Mississippi.
Jean Fritz is a highly regarded author of historical biographies for young people. As Horn Book contributor Mary M. Burns stated, "No one is better than Jean Fritz at making history interesting as well as comprehensible. She has the ability to define a theme, support it with facts, and transform a collection of data into a synthesis that reads like an adventure story." Fritz has written biographies of many heroes of the American Revolution, including George Washington, Paul Revere, Samuel Adams, and John Hancock, as well as other significant figures in history before and after this much-studied era, such as Christopher Columbus, Pocahontas, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, and Harriet Beecher Stowe. Fritz has won numerous awards for this work, and critics highlight her ability to bring alive complex events and people from the past through the use of humor and the inclusion of personal details that are usually left out of historical accounts.
As a child growing up in China as the daughter of missionaries, Fritz turned to writing as a "private place, where no one could come," as she recalled in a Publishers Weekly interview. She kept a journal into which she copied passages from books and poems written by others; later, "it became a place for her to articulate her feelings about people and life. Years later she drew upon it in her writings for children," according to O. Mell Busbin in the Dictionary of Literary Biography. Living in China as an American focused much of Fritz's fantasy life on the land of her parents' birth, which they spoke of frequently and with much feeling. "I think it is because I was so far away that I developed a homesickness that made me want to embrace not just a given part of America at a given time but the whole of it," Fritz wrote in an article for Horn Book. "No one is more patriotic than the one separated from his country; no one is as eager to find roots as the person who has been uprooted."
Fritz is credited with producing biographies that are consistently well-crafted, realistic, thoroughly researched, and often witty accounts of the characters who have shaped and influenced history. For example, in her Language Arts review of Traitor: The Case of Benedict Arnold, Ruth M. Stein noted that Fritz's "books exemplify criteria for good biographies—accuracy, interest, relevance to our times, and insight into the person, the period and contemporaries.… However cozy the style and informal the writing, the scholarship is solid, yet unobtrusive." Georgess McHargue remarked in the New York Times Book Review that "Fritz has what amounts to perfect pitch when writing history or biography for young people."
Fritz's talent for bringing historical figures to life is a major source of her popularity with readers and critics alike. As Busbin stated in the Dictionary of Literary Biography: "In her biographies Fritz attempts to get at the truth of the individual through his likes, dislikes, worries, joys, successes, failures.… Through her humorous style she paints a full, believable picture of each individual, using specific, exact language and precise detail." "I like being a detective, a treasure hunter, an eavesdropper," Fritz revealed to Richard Ammon in a profile for Language Arts. "I look for personalities whose lives make good stories. I like complicated people, persons who possessed contradictions or who have interesting quirks."
Fritz began her career as a writer in the 1950s by publishing children's picture books such as Bunny Hopwell's First Spring and Help Mr. Willy Nilly. She soon branched out into historical narratives and gained a reputation as a stellar biographer of American heroes with titles published in the 1960s and 1970s, such as Why Don't You Get a Horse, Sam Adams?, Who's That Stopping on Plymouth Rock?, and Can't You Make Them Behave, King George? In the 1980s, Fritz continued to publish biographies on pivotal figures in American history, but moved beyond the core group around George Washington and the signers of the American Constitution with titles such as Where Do You Think You're Going, Christopher Columbus?, The Double Life of Pocahontas, and Make Way for Sam Houston! Like her earlier biographies, these more recent works take on subjects often written about before by others. However, reviewers compare Fritz's accounts favorably to those written by others, for she is unfailingly clear, interesting, and accessible.
The 1990s often found Fritz venturing beyond the shores of the United States in her quest for biographical material. In 1992 she contributed to The World in 1492, a compendium of six essays that offers a worldwide glimpse of human history five hundred years ago from the perspective of six different geographic locations. Though the depth of information offered is necessarily limited, reviewers noted, the scarcity of books offering world history to students in middle school makes the contribution invaluable. "The cumulative effect presents a global pattern of currents and undercurrents making up the swirling ocean of human existence 500 years ago," Patricia Manning commented in School Library Journal.
Around the World in a Hundred Years: From Henry the Navigator to Magellan also focuses on the fifteenth century. Here Fritz presents a series of European explorers whose conquest of the world beyond the shores of Europe helped make more accurate maps available for the first time, and also reaped untold profits for the Spanish and Portuguese monarchies through the enslavement of native peoples. Critics noted that Fritz does not shy away from telling unflattering truths about characters often hailed as heroes in the annals of history, and that her characteristic wit is also ever-present. "Those [students] seeking a broader picture will find this an intriguing view of the age of exploration," predicted Carolyn Phelan in Booklist.
Fritz returned to the time of the American Revolution with George Washington's Mother, a humorous biography of the mother of the first president of the United States that "depicts Mary Ball Washington as a manipulative and stubborn worrywart," according to Gale W. Sherman in School Library Journal. Geared for a younger audience than most of Fritz's historical narratives, George Washington's Mother was perceived by reviewers as intended to teach younger children something about early American history through anecdotes that emphasize how even important people are sometimes embarrassed by the behavior of their mothers.
Also intended for early-grade readers is Fritz's Just a Few Words, Mr. Lincoln: The Story of the Gettysburg Address. In this short history, Fritz concisely explains the causes of the American Civil War and relates the story of the battle of Gettysburg, where 23,000 Union soldiers died. The author refutes the legend that has Lincoln writing his famous speech on the train ride to Gettysburg, and includes the text of the speech at the end of the book. Though carefully designed and written with a younger audience in mind, Just a Few Words, Mr. Lincoln, like Fritz's books for older children, "informally yet ably conveys the significance of Lincoln's eloquent speech," according to a reviewer for Publishers Weekly.
In Harriet Beecher Stowe and the Beecher Preachers, Fritz returns readers to the U.S. Civil War era by focusing on the woman whom Lincoln credited with starting the war to end slavery through the publication of her protest novel, Uncle Tom's Cabin. Fritz describes Stowe's childhood as one of nine children born to a fire-and-brimstone preacher who was disappointed that his child was born a girl. "With her usual respect for young readers, Fritz explores not only a life, but also a family, an era, and vitally important social movements," remarked Sally Margolis in School Library Journal. Fritz notes that while Harriet Beecher Stowe was punished as a child for seeking creative expression in writing, as an adult it was the profits from Stowe's writing that supported her husband and six children. "How she managed to write at all, given the circumstances under which she struggled, is the central conflict in a biography which reads like a novel," according to Mary M. Burns in Horn Book. Harriet Beecher Stowe and the Beecher Preachers is often compared to two other biographies of the author of Uncle Tom's Cabin published near-contemporaneously. Bulletin of the Center for Children Books reviewer Deborah Stevenson favored Fritz's version for several reasons: "the portrayals here are livelier, … and the style is informative but conversational and unintimidating, qualities that make it more suitable for preteens than [the other books]."
In You Want Women to Vote, Lizzie Stanton? Fritz celebrates another female hero of the nineteenth century. Like Stowe, Stanton was born to a father who wished she had been born a boy, and she spent much of her life chasing her father's approval. Like Beecher Stowe, Stanton was also able to balance the acute demands of motherhood and housekeeping with the demands of her political conscience, finding the time to help organize and lead the American suffrage movement, and in the process, becoming the "Grand Old Woman of America," as Mary M. Burns noted in her review for Horn Book. Some reviewers claimed that Fritz manages to tell the story of Stanton's life in such an entertaining manner that students may want to read it for the story rather than for the history. Indeed, in You Want Women to Vote, Lizzie Stanton? Stanton "comes alive for middle graders in a narrative with almost novelistic pacing, a dose of humor, and an affectionate point of view," proclaimed a critic for Kirkus Reviews.
Fritz offers a different perspective on the American Revolution in Why Not, Lafayette?, a portrait of the French nobleman who was inspired by the colonists' bid for freedom to fight alongside Washington and other Republican heroes of the war against Britain. The author portrays her protagonist as stifled by the boredom of his life in Paris, electrified by news of the colonists' struggle, on fire with admiration for General Washington, and a lifelong idealist in pursuit of republicanism. Fritz follows Lafayette from the years that made him a hero in the eyes of a new country, to the tricky years of the French Revolution, and his triumphal tour of the United States in his later life. As usual, Fritz relies on the effective inclusion of personal details to draw the reader into the reality of the life being studied. "Readers will be stirred even at this distance by Lafayette's accomplishments," predicted a contributor to Kirkus Reviews. Though reviewers disagreed about the degree to which Fritz is successful in portraying the important players in both the French and American revolutionary scenes, a reviewer for Publishers Weekly came down on the affirmative side of the question and concluded that Why Not, Lafayette? is "lively, vigorous and just plain fun to read."
Fritz goes beyond the borders of the United States to find a topic for Leonardo's Horse, which presents the five-hundred-year-long story of one piece of art designed by the famous Renaissance artist Leonardo da Vinci. In the late fifteenth century, the duke of Milan commissioned da Vinci to create for him a gigantic statue of a bronze horse. Da Vinci agreed, and got as far as making a full-size clay model of the proposed twenty-four-foot-high statue. Then the French army invaded, and their archers used the model for target practice. With the model thus destroyed, the statue was never completed. Hundreds of years later an American named Charles Dent heard about the statue, saw some of da Vinci's sketches for it, and decided to complete the project as a present from the United States to Italy. In Leonardo's Horse Fritz weaves in information about the life and other major works created by da Vinci, forming what Booklist critic Carolyn Phelan described as an "absorbing text [that] is both a lively introduction to Leonardo and a tribute to Dent." Plus, noted a Kirkus Reviews critic, "the contemporary process by which the horse was created and cast is described with enough detail to fascinate but not to bore."
Fritz received her inspiration to write Leonardo's Horse from an unusual source. A foundry near Fritz's upstate New York home had received the contract to cast the statue, and before the horse went to its permanent home in Milan, Italy, it was on view at the foundry. Fritz discovered this by accident while searching for a fun weekend activity for her and a friend, and they decided to go see the horse. As soon as they drove within view of the horse "I said, 'Oh my gosh, that belongs in a book,'" Fritz told Publishers Weekly interviewer Heather Vogel Frederick. She found one of the men in charge of the horse's creation and asked to write a story about it, but he was skeptical. "He said, 'Well, I'll send my children to school tomorrow to see if they have any of your books at the library,'" she continued. "They came back with about thirty, so I guess he decided I'd be all right."
The Lost Colony of Roanoke examines one of the great mysteries of American history: what happened to this colony, the first English colony in what would become the United States? Fritz first traces the history of the colony's founding and the brief years of its known existence. Famed English explorer Sir Walter Raleigh tried twice to plant a colony on the island of Roanoke, located off the coast of what later became North Carolina, but both times supplies and food ran low. Twice some of the Englishmen returned to their home country for more provisions, and both times those who were left behind disappeared, with no trace remaining when the next expedition arrived. Fritz searches for clues to these disappearances in Roanoke's known history, and finds some in the settlers' hostile attitude towards the Native American inhabitants of the area. "Lively storytelling … archaeological details, and a survey of theories make this a fascinating volume," wrote a Kirkus Reviews contributor. "Fritz has scored again," Ann Welton declared in School Library Journal, "making history breathe while showing both historians and archaeologists at their reconstructive best."
Fritz once shared her thoughts on the perennial popularity of biographies: "I think young people of almost any age or ability read biographies for the same reason that adults do—or would if they could find what they want. We all seek insight into the human condition, and it is helpful to find familiar threads running through the lives of others, however famous. We need to know more people in all circumstances and times so we can pursue our private, never-to-be-fulfilled quest to find out what life is all about. In actual experience we are able to see so few lives in the round and to follow them closely from beginning to end. I, for one, need to possess a certain number of relatively whole lives in the long span of history."
Fritz has summed up her feelings on writing about the past in this manner: "My interest in writing about American history stemmed originally, I think, from a subconscious desire to find roots. I lived in China until I was thirteen, hearing constant talk about 'home' (meaning America), but since I had never been 'home,' I felt like a girl without a country. I have put down roots quite firmly by now, but in the process I have discovered the joys of research and am probably hooked. I eavesdrop on the past to satisfy my own curiosity, but if I can surprise children into believing history, I will be happy, especially if they find, as I do, that truth is stranger (and often funnier) than fiction."
Biographical and Critical Sources
Children's Literature Review, Gale (Detroit, MI), Volume 2, 1976, Volume 14, 1988.
Dictionary of Literary Biography, Volume 52: American Writers for Children since 1960: Fiction, Gale (Detroit, MI), 1986.
Hostetler, Elizabeth Ann Rumer, Jean Fritz: A Critical Biography, University of Toledo (Toledo, OH), 1981.
Norton, Donna E., Through the Eyes of a Child: An Introduction to Children's Literature, 2nd edition, Merrill (Columbus, OH), 1987.
Something about the Author Autobiography Series, Volume 2, Gale (Detroit, MI), 1986.
Booklist, November 1, 1992, Carolyn Phelan, review of The World in 1492, p. 506; October 1, 1993, Kay Weisman, review of Just a Few Words, Mr. Lincoln, p. 347; May 15, 1994, Carolyn Phelan, review of Around the World in a Hundred Years, p. 1676; September 15, 1999, Randy Meyer, review of Why Not, Lafayette?, p. 253; April 15, 2000, Sue-Ellen Beauregard, review of Who's That Stepping on Plymouth Rock?, p. 1558; October 15, 2001, Carolyn Phelan, review of Leonardo's Horse, p. 394; April 1, 2004, Carolyn Phelan, review of The Lost Colony of Roanoke, p. 1362.
Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books, March, 1961; March, 1974; November, 1975, Zena Sutherland, review of Where Was Patrick Henry on the 29th of May?, p. 44; July-August, 1982; June, 1994, Betsy Hearne, review of Around the World in a Hundred Years, p. 319; October, 1994, Deborah Stevenson, review of Harriet Beecher Stowe and the Beecher Preachers, p. 45; October, 1995, Elizabeth Bush, review of You Want Women to Vote, Lizzie Stanton?, pp. 53-54; December, 1999, Elizabeth Bush, review of Why Not, Lafayette?, p. 128.
Catholic Library World, July-August, 1985.
Early Years, February, 1982.
Five Owls, May-June, 1987; May-June, 1994, Mary Bahr Fritts, review of Around the World in a Hundred Years, p. 108.
Horn Book, October, 1967; January-February, 1985; July-August, 1986; March-April, 1993, Anita Silvey, review of The World in 1492, p. 226; July-August, 1994, Mary M. Burns, review of Around the World in a Hundred Years, p. 471; September-October, 1994, Mary M. Burns, review of Harriet Beecher Stowe and the Beecher Preachers, pp. 606-607; January-February, 1996, Mary M. Burns, review of You Want Women to Vote, Lizzie Stanton?, pp. 89-90; November, 1999, Margaret A. Bush, review of Why Not, Lafayette?, p. 756; March-April, 2004, "National Humanities Medal," p. 221; May-June, 2004, Betty Carter, review of The Lost Colony of Roanoke, p. 344.
Instructor, April, 2002, Judy Freeman, review of Leonardo's Horse, p. 19.
Kirkus Reviews, August 1, 1995, review of You Want Women to Vote, Lizzie Stanton?, p. 1109; October 1, 1999, review of Why Not, Lafayette?, p. 1579; September 15, 2001, review of Leonardo's Horse, p. 1357; April 1, 2004, review of The Lost Colony of Roanoke, p. 329.
Language Arts, February, 1977; April, 1980; September, 1982, Ruth M. Stein, review of Traitor: The Case of Benedict Arnold, p. 605; March, 1983, Richard Ammon, "Profile: Jean Fritz," pp. 365-369; September, 1994, Miriam Martinez and Marcia F. Nash, review of George Washington's Mother, pp. 371-372.
Los Angeles Times Book Review, July 25, 1982, Barbara Karlin, review of And Then What Happened, Paul Revere?, What's the Big Idea, Ben Franklin?, and Where Was Patrick Henry on the 29th of May?, p. 9.
New Yorker, December 6, 1982, Faith McNulty, review of Homesick: My Own Story.
New York Times Book Review, November 9, 1980, Georgess McHargue, "Early Explorers," pp. 60-61; November 14, 1982, James A. Michener, "China Childhood," pp. 41, 57.
Publishers Weekly, July 24, 1981; October 26, 1992, review of The World in 1492, p. 73; September 20, 1993, review of Just a Few Words, Mr. Lincoln, p. 72; September 20, 1999, review of Why Not, Lafayette?, p. 89, review of Homesick: My Own Story, p. 90; March 26, 2001, review of Why Not, Lafayette?, p. 95; October 22, 2001, Heather Vogel Frederick, interview with Fritz, p. 25; May 17, 2004, review of The Lost Colony of Roanoke, p. 52.
San Francisco Chronicle, April 3, 1985.
School Library Journal, November, 1967; October, 1992, Gale W. Sherman, review of George Washington's Mother, p. 103; November, 1992, Patricia Manning, review of The World in 1492, p. 115; October, 1993, Leda Schubert, review of Just a Few Words, Mr. Lincoln, p. 118; September, 1994, Sally Margolis, review of Harriet Beecher Stowe and the Beecher Preachers, p. 227; September, 1995, Rebecca O'Connell, review of You Want Women to Vote, Lizzie Stanton?, p. 208; September, 2001, Anne Chapman Callaghan, review of Leonardo's Horse, p. 214; November, 2003, Carol Fazioli, review of Homesick, p. 82; January, 2004, Joy Fleishhacker, review of Around the World in a Hundred Years: From Henry the Navigator to Magellan, p. 79;May, 2004, Ann Welton, review of The Lost Colony of Roanoke, p. 167; October, 2004, review of The Lost Colony of Roanoke, p. S31.
Top of the News, June, 1976.
Voice of Youth Advocates, August, 1994, Joanne Johnson, review of Harriet Beecher Stowe and the Beecher Preachers, p. 166.
Scholastic Web site, http://www.scholastic.com/(July 6,2005), interview with Fritz.*