Barbara Park Dies of Ovarian Cancer, Wrote Popular Bedtime Stories
Barbara Park, author of the popular Junie B. Jones series for children (and adults), has passed away at the age of 66 of ovarian cancer. She leaves behind a husband, two sons, millions of adoring fans, and one impish little girl who can never seem to stay out of trouble. When asked how she managed to create such true to life dialogue for kids, she stated "I don't have a problem being 6 years old in my
head". A self described class clown, she listed as influences writers as diverse as Judy Blume and J.D. Salinger.
After her diagnosis with cancer seven years ago, she started a charitable organization to help women struggling with cancer, called Sisters in Survival.
Her books sold over 55 million copies (with at least a dozen of those in our house). Barbara Park never got around to writing an adult novel, explaining "I'm not actually sure I'm grown-up enough for grown-up books."
I began reading her stories about 6 months ago, and immediately fell in love. The author's humorous way with words and use of mischievous slang has filled our house with laughter. Her books are a fixture on the nightstand next to the bed.
Oh, by the way, my grandchildren like them too.
"I got tricked!
'Cause on the day of the trip, I told Mother I had a fever. But that woman did not even take my word for it.
Instead, she took my temperature!
And so what kind of trust is that, I ask you?"
-- Junie B. Jones Has a Peep in Her Pocket