Walter Dean Myers

A Literary Companion

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About the Book

Walter Dean Myers, preeminent author of teen fiction biography and verse, refines the image of black characters that are frequently trivialized or vilified in juvenile literature, advertising, television, and film. From his saga The Glory Field to his novel The Young Landlords, Myers’s canon surveys the complex realm of the teen years as colliding settings in home, school, and the street.
This volume introduces readers to both the writer and his work, with an emphasis on the characters, dates, events, motifs, and themes from the books. Myers’s 101 A-to-Z entries offer concise, analytical discussion on all topics and include generous citations from primary and secondary sources. Each entry concludes with a selected bibliography on such subjects as segregation, Malcolm X, urbanism, writing, metafiction, drugs and alcohol, slavery, and the Vietnam War. Appendices offer a timeline of historical events in Myers’s writings and forty topics for group or individual projects, oral analysis, background material, and theme development. A map of Harlem (where many of the stories are set), genealogical diagrams for characters, and an author chronology contribute to a comprehensive presentation.

About the Author(s)

Mary Ellen Snodgrass is an award-winning author of English and Latin textbooks and reference works for 35 years. She taught at Hickory High School and Lenoir Rhyne University for 23 years. She focuses on women’s and world literature and history and general research topics, including epidemics, the history of money, clothing, food, and dance.

Bibliographic Details

Mary Ellen Snodgrass
Format: softcover (7 x 10)
Pages: 317
Bibliographic Info: chronology, appendices, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2006
pISBN: 978-0-7864-2456-6
eISBN: 978-1-4766-1118-1
Imprint: McFarland
Series: McFarland Literary Companions

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments      v
Preface      1
Introduction      3

Chronology of Myers’s Life and Works      5
Myers’s Genealogy      43
Walter Dean Myers: A Literary Companion      45

Appendix A: Time Line of Historical and Fictional Events in Myers’s Works      269
Appendix B: Writing and Research Topics      275
Bibliography      281
Index      297

Book Reviews & Awards

“more recent information than [the competition]…a lengthy chronology of Myers’s life and works…alphabetically organized topical discussions of themes, subjects, and characters present in Myers’ fiction and critical discussions of select novels”—VOYA.