In grad school, Jordan introduced me to Daniel Pinkwater’s books. And they’re great! Well, many of them are great, and almost all of them are at least entertaining. (He’s written a lot of books.) For an introduction, I highly recommend 5 Novels; Jordan will be peeved if I don’t mention Lizard Music, and among his most recent work, I can not praise Bongo Larry highly enough.
But he writes enough books that I don’t feel compelled to go out and buy all of them. So, over the last year or two, I’ve been going through my local library’s collection of his books. (Of which they have most, but not all.) Eventually, though I ran out of his books. But right next to them were two books by Jill Pinkwater, his wife. (And illustrator of many of his books, though he actually illustrated his own early books.)
And they’re really good, too! Both Pinkwaters’ writings have quite a bit in common: very funny, in a world where things that we would consider surreal are quite commonplace, about people who would be considered social misfits in our world. In Jill Pinkwater’s books, some of their social misfit status leaks into the books: it’s quickly overcome in Buffalo Brenda (which I could imagine is a Daniel Pinkwater book), but Tails of the Bronx is a good deal more serious. Looking through Amazon, I see a few more (Cloud Horse, The Disappearance of Sister Perfect, Mr. Fred, a boring-looking cookbook). I don’t think my library has copies, but that’s what interlibrary loan is for…
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