Discussion:
Jean Marzollo (nee Martin), 75, kid-lit author (I SPY series) -- Hi, Lenona.
(too old to reply)
That Derek
2018-04-11 03:36:32 UTC
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http://highlandscurrent.com/2018/04/10/jean-marzollo-childrens-book-author-dies-at-75/

Jean Marzollo, Children’s Book Author, Dies at Age 75

By Chip Rowe on April 10, 2018

Cold Spring resident best known for I SPY series

By Chip Rowe

Jean Marzollo, a longtime Cold Spring resident and children’s book author best known for her I SPY picture riddle series, died Wednesday (April 10) in her sleep of natural causes, according to her family. She was 75.

Along with the I SPY series, Marzollo was the author of more than 150 children’s books, including Pierre the Penguin, The Little Plant Doctor, Mama Mama/Papa, Soccer Sam, Happy Birthday Martin Luther King and the Shanna Show series.

In November, the Butterfield Library in Cold Spring named its children’s room in her honor. In 1996, she was awarded the Alice Curtis Desmond Award for Children’s Literature at the Desmond-Fish Library in Garrison.

Jean Martin was born June 24, 1942, and grew up in Manchester, Connecticut, listening to her parents, Richard and Ruth Martin, recite poems they had memorized in their own childhoods. As she recalled for a 2011 profile that marked 20 years of I SPY in print, the rhythms and meters became ingrained. Robert Louis Stevenson’s A Child’s Garden of Verse collection was a favorite book. She also enjoyed sewing and sports.

After earning a bachelor’s degree at the University of Connecticut and a master’s degree in teaching from Harvard, she worked as a high school English teacher for a year before moving to New York City, where she co-founded a small publishing company (among other items, she wrote the first parent/teacher guide to “Sesame Street” and a book for parents, Learning Through Play). In 1972 she was hired as editor of Scholastic’s Let’s Find Out, a monthly magazine for kindergarteners, a position she held for 20 years.

As editor of the magazine, Marzollo collaborated with many top illustrators and in the mid-1970s showed one of them, Susan Jeffers, a poem she had written. From that came her first published book, Close Your Eyes, in 1978. She continued to write, working with a variety of illustrators.

In 1986, a photographer named Walter Wick sent the art director of Let’s Find Out a promotional photo of hardware store objects seemingly floating in space.

“Walter’s photo was perfect for kindergarten because it was fun to look at, beautiful and clear,” Marzollo later wrote. Another editor, Grace Maccarone, mentioned the children’s game, “I Spy with My Little Eye,” which inspired Marzollo to use the words, “I spy…” to begin each of the riddles she wrote to accompany Wick’s photographic assemblages.

“Those two little words are very powerful because they establish the main character and the story of the book,” she wrote. “The main character is the reader — or the child being read to. The story is about the main character becoming a hero by finding everything in the riddle. I am grateful that I was in a kindergarten frame of mind.”

She said that she and Wick discussed ideas, words and rhymes while looking at “rough drafts” of his assemblages shot with a Polaroid camera. She recalled being pleasantly surprised to learn that older children and adults also enjoyed I SPY. “It seems that most everyone likes a jelly-bean hunt, and I SPY is a grand one.”

Marzollo estimated in 2011 that there were 5,000 to 10,000 objects depicted in the first eight books, which were published between 1991 and 1999. They have since been translated into 12 languages in 20 countries, with more than 42 million copies in print. Spin-offs included six I Spy Challengers, 18 easy readers, 10 board books, a phonics fun box set, a sticker book, board games, puzzles and video games. The series inspired a show on HBO Family and, for a time, I Spy Pudding was available at grocery stores.

After the success of I SPY, Marzollo began illustrating her own books, retelling and illustrating five Bible stories and three Greek myths, and writing and illustrating two books for preschoolers: Ten Little Eggs and Ten Little Christmas Presents.

Marzollo often “tested” her manuscripts on children at the Philipstown Recreation Center or at Haldane. She later wrote she wanted to see if the children, who were usually between ages 4 and 8, “get it.” She explained: “If they don’t, I fix it. Children are great editors. They teach me what works best for them.”

Family life

Jean Martin met the man who became her husband, Claudio Marzollo, in 1968 at a group ski house. “We were dating other people,” he recalled in 2012. Later, she invited him to a party she was having. The couple married in February 1969.

By the mid-1970s Claudio, a sculptor, and Jean had two small boys and were living in a loft in New York City. Both worked at home, which didn’t work.

“We needed an office for Jean and a studio for me,” Claudio recalled. “We always had an idea of living in the country.” After moving to Cold Spring in 1976, the couple immersed themselves in the community, he said. Jean served for eight years in the 1980s on the Haldane School Board, including two as its president. She also was a founder of the Haldane School Foundation.

In 1993, after both of her sons had left for college, Marzollo and Carolyn Rossi Copeland founded a theater group for teens. Using the First Presbyterian Church in Cold Spring for rehearsals and the parish hall at St. Philip’s Church for performances, they put on Godspell and Joseph and the Technicolor Dreamcoat with Jean as producer and Carolyn as director.

In 1995, Jean’s son, Dan Marzollo, appeared at the Philipstown Depot Theatre in a production of Marvin’s Room. Seeing the show was his parents’ first time in the space. “We thought, ‘What a great little theater,’ despite the fact that on opening night there were about 10 people in the audience and six of them had come there from dinner at our house!” Claudio recalled in 2012.

In early 1996, Jean and friends Irene O’Garden and Patricia Adams began looking for a new home for the troupe, which was sharing St. Philip’s parish hall with the church nursery school. That fall, the Town of Philipstown took over the lease of the Depot Theatre and the Recreation Commission agreed to oversee a new nonprofit company.

Besides her husband and son, Marzollo is survived by her son David Marzollo (Melia), her grandchildren, Gabriel, Westley and Simon; and her siblings, Allen and Katherine.

A wake will be held from 3 to 7 p.m. on Friday, April 13, at Clinton Funeral Home, 21 Parrott St., in Cold Spring, followed by a funeral service at St. Mary’s Episcopal Church, 1 Chestnut St., in Cold Spring at 3 p.m. on Saturday, April 14.

Memorial donations may be made to the Jean Marzollo Children’s Reading Room at the Butterfield Library (butterfieldlibrary.org) or St. Mary’s Church (stmaryscoldspring.org).

Alison Rooney contributed reporting.



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l***@yahoo.com
2018-04-14 19:01:15 UTC
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Thank you kindly.

More:

http://www.jeanmarzollo.com/

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/04/13/obituaries/jean-marzollo-75-dies-her-i-spy-books-challenged-children.html

Excerpt:

...Another that Ms. Marzollo was particularly pleased with, her family said, was “Happy Birthday, Martin Luther King” (1993, illustrated by J. Brian Pinkney). In it she recognized the sensitivity of writing for a young audience. When dealing with King’s death, the text is sparse but straightforward.

“Martin Luther King Jr. was shot and killed in 1968,” it says. However, in the book’s foreword, she advises those reading it to preschoolers to use their judgment.

“If you feel that the words ‘shot and killed’ on page 30 are inappropriate for the child or children you plan to read this book to, you may want to change the words and say simply that Martin Luther King ‘died’ in 1968,” she wrote. “It isn’t, after all, necessary for us to tell very young children the harsh details about Reverend King’s death in order to convey to them the central message of his inspirational leadership.”

But softening reality for young readers had its limits for her. In 1993, she and another children’s author, Kate McMullan, were invited to speak at Sag Harbor Elementary School on Long Island for an “author’s day.” But the ostensibly harmless event caused a local uproar when school officials objected to two small illustrations in Ms. McMullan’s book “The Noisy Giants’ Tea Party,” one of a boy running away after breaking a window with a basketball, the other of three men staggering out of a tavern.

When a school official explained that the intent of the event (which was eventually canceled) was not to prompt a discussion of social issues and values, Ms. Marzollo took umbrage.

“All literature is about values,” she told The New York Times. “I can’t name a picture book that is not about values. That’s why people read. Kindergarten teachers impose values on children all day long. They say, ‘Let’s clean up.’ ‘Let’s not hit each other.’ ‘Let’s not run in the hall.’ If something in a book triggers a discussion, that’s a teachable moment.”

There was no controversy surrounding Ms. Marzollo’s “I Spy” books, just a demand for more of them...

(snip)

https://www.publishersweekly.com/pw/by-topic/childrens/childrens-authors/article/76609-obituary-jean-marzollo.html

https://www.slj.com/2018/04/industry-news/spy-author-jean-marzollo-remembered-generosity-love-words/#_

https://www.google.com/search?q=jean+marzollo+books&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwj7kL6tubraAhUMVN8KHf4uAZEQ_AUICygC&biw=1268&bih=683
(book covers)

https://www.google.com/search?biw=1268&bih=683&ei=oE_SWqD0J7K1ggfQsrOYBQ&q=jean+marzollo+kirkus&oq=jean+marzollo+kirkus&gs_l=psy-ab.3..33i160k1l2.4506.5461.0.5576.6.6.0.0.0.0.111.404.5j1.6.0....0...1c.1.64.psy-ab..0.6.402...0i22i30k1.0.uDsFjOnfp6s
(Kirkus reviews)

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4664.Jean_Marzollo
(reader reviews)

https://www.google.com/search?q=jean+marzollo&source=lnms&tbm=vid&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwiCx8jXubraAhXDY98KHTAkDbkQ_AUICygC&biw=1268&bih=683
(videos about her books)



Lenona.
RH Draney
2018-04-14 22:36:28 UTC
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Post by l***@yahoo.com
“Martin Luther King Jr. was shot and killed in 1968,” it says. However, in the book’s foreword, she advises those reading it to preschoolers to use their judgment.
“If you feel that the words ‘shot and killed’ on page 30 are inappropriate for the child or children you plan to read this book to, you may want to change the words and say simply that Martin Luther King ‘died’ in 1968,” she wrote. “It isn’t, after all, necessary for us to tell very young children the harsh details about Reverend King’s death in order to convey to them the central message of his inspirational leadership.”
But "shot and killed" isn't the conventional description of King's
death...everyone knows he was "slain"....r
l***@yahoo.com
2018-04-18 23:53:18 UTC
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Post by RH Draney
But "shot and killed" isn't the conventional description of King's
death...everyone knows he was "slain"....r
I thought it was usually "assassinated."



Lenona.
RH Draney
2018-04-19 02:23:40 UTC
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Post by l***@yahoo.com
Post by RH Draney
But "shot and killed" isn't the conventional description of King's
death...everyone knows he was "slain"....r
I thought it was usually "assassinated."
Never...show me one report where it says "assassinated civil rights
leader"....

In fact, I look forward to the day (not long in coming, I'm sure) when
some one-block-long street will be renamed "Slain Civil Rights Leader
The Reverend Doctor Martin Luther King Junior Boulevard"....r
l***@yahoo.com
2018-04-20 00:50:28 UTC
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Post by RH Draney
Never...show me one report where it says "assassinated civil rights
leader"....
Er, excuse me?

I'm not saying that any of the newspaper headlines on April 5th necessarily used the word "assassinated" - I don't know one way or the other. Just that ever since then, the word has been used CONSTANTLY in reference to King - mainly in books, but likely in newspapers as well. (I know the New York Times and the New Yorker certainly use that term, anyway.) Just google it.

Btw, guess what the children of MLK have ALL said?

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/retropolis/wp/2018/03/30/who-killed-martin-luther-king-jr-his-family-believes-james-earl-ray-was-framed/?noredirect=on&utm_term=.c40253216f81


Lenona.
p***@gmail.com
2018-04-20 02:03:44 UTC
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Post by RH Draney
Post by l***@yahoo.com
Post by RH Draney
But "shot and killed" isn't the conventional description of King's
death...everyone knows he was "slain"....r
I thought it was usually "assassinated."
Never...show me one report where it says "assassinated civil rights
leader"....
Not sure what your fascination about this is, but a cursory review of contemporary coverage shows a lot of "assassinated" as well as "murdered" "shot dead" "slain" "shot to death" and "killed by sniper".

https://tinyurl.com/y98lrpzn
https://tinyurl.com/y84r2pwy
https://tinyurl.com/yd7ufl85

In fact, typing slain civil rights leader into Google (without quotes) brings back, in the top 6 results, redirections to:

-"Category:Assassinated American civil rights activists" - Wikipedia

-"10 Influential Black Leaders Assassinated for Their Beliefs

-"The Top 5 Assassinations Of Black Leaders"

-and another Wiki article on the "Assassination of Medgar Evers"

Yes, "slain" is used a certain percentage of the time referring to MLK, perhaps because he was, you know --slain. The word is also used a lot in relation to JFK, RFK, and Honest Abe.
RH Draney
2018-04-20 08:21:44 UTC
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Post by p***@gmail.com
-"Category:Assassinated American civil rights activists" - Wikipedia
-"10 Influential Black Leaders Assassinated for Their Beliefs
-"The Top 5 Assassinations Of Black Leaders"
-and another Wiki article on the "Assassination of Medgar Evers"
Yes, "slain" is used a certain percentage of the time referring to MLK, perhaps because he was, you know --slain. The word is also used a lot in relation to JFK, RFK, and Honest Abe.
Why "without quotes"?...all that does is give you every page that
mentions the words "slain", "civil", "rights" and "leader" in any order
and separated by any number of other words...searching the phrase *with*
quotes I get two hits where the phrase refers to Medgar Evers, and all
the rest refer to MLK....r
p***@gmail.com
2018-04-20 15:45:09 UTC
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Post by RH Draney
Post by p***@gmail.com
-"Category:Assassinated American civil rights activists" - Wikipedia
-"10 Influential Black Leaders Assassinated for Their Beliefs
-"The Top 5 Assassinations Of Black Leaders"
-and another Wiki article on the "Assassination of Medgar Evers"
Yes, "slain" is used a certain percentage of the time referring to MLK, perhaps because he was, you know --slain. The word is also used a lot in relation to JFK, RFK, and Honest Abe.
Why "without quotes"?...all that does is give you every page that
mentions the words "slain", "civil", "rights" and "leader" in any order
and separated by any number of other words...searching the phrase *with*
quotes I get two hits where the phrase refers to Medgar Evers, and all
the rest refer to MLK....r
In order to catch uses of "slain" and "assassinated as both an adjective and a verb.

It doesn't matter, though, because the homework you assigned to Lenona was "show me one report where it says "assassinated civil rights
leader"". Both contemporary headlines from April 1968 (see prior post) AND general usage since show many such instances. Here are thousands of them using your exact phrase (with quotes):

https://tinyurl.com/y7lhp8lw

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