Ode to Ramona…

Beverly Atlee Cleary

Beverly Atlee Cleary born April 12, 1916, became one of the most famous female authors in the world. Growing up in Portland, Oregon, she struggled with reading until she found the librarian that opened her world. In 1939, she graduated with a Master’s degree in Library and Information Science from the University of Washington. Ms. Cleary defied her parents and eloped with her husband, Clarence Cleary,  in 1940. After becoming a librarian and moving to California, she began working as a full-time children’s writer in 1942. Beverly stated, “I believe in that “missionary spirit” among children’s librarians. Kids deserve books of literary quality, and librarians are so important in encouraging them to read and selecting books that are appropriate”. Ms. Cleary’s Character’s significance noted the minutiae of childhood of a middle class family. Her first book published in 1950, and she continued a long list of satirical, honest, and exuberant books with zest for life. Ms. Cleary won several awards, published books in 25 languages, and April 12 is National Drop Everything and Read Day (DEAR) in her honor. Indeed, without Ramona…where would we be now?