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Judith Viorst

Biography

Judith Viorst

When her three sons were young, Judith Viorst often tried to help them with their problems—from a bad day to a dead pet—by writing books about people facing the same issues. Her books for children, such as ALEXANDER AND THE TERRIBLE, HORRIBLE, NO GOOD, VERY BAD DAY (1972) and THE TENTH GOOD THING ABOUT BARNEY (1971) deal with real-life problems children face and suggest ways to look for humor and hope in these situations.
 
Judith Viorst (pronounced VEE awrst) grew up in New Jersey, where she went to Rutgers University. She says that her first writing attempt was a poem to her dead mother and father—who were both actually alive and not pleased with their poetic fate. Later, Viorst worked on science books for teenagers. Her first published book was PROJECTS: Space (1962), a book on NASA’s space program. She began submitting poems to magazines and then went on to write books for children, young adults, and adults.
 
Viorst’s work for older children includes books of humorous verse. Many of her poems in If I Were in Charge of the World and Other Worries (1981) and Sad Underwear and Other Complications (1995) demonstrate how to view life’s small difficulties and worries with a sense of humor. The books also include funny retellings of familiar fairy tales.
 
Recently, Viorst has continued writing, both for children and adults. Her work ranges from another Alexander story, ALEXANDER,WHO IS NOT (DO YOU HEAR ME? I MEAN IT!) GOING TO MOVE (1998); to THE GOOD-BYE BOOK (1999), the story of a young child unhappy about being left with a baby sitter; to books for adults, such as SUDDENLY SIXTY AND OTHER SHOCKS OF LATER LIFE (2000) and GROWN-UP MARRIAGE: What We Know, Wish We Had Known, and Still Need to Know About Being Married (2003).

Books by Judith Viorst

Written by Judith Viorst with illustrations by Lee White - Children's 6-9, Fiction, Free Verse, Poetry

From the beloved and internationally bestselling author of ALEXANDER AND THE TERRIBLE, HORRIBLE, NO GOOD, VERY BAD DAY, Judith Viorst comes a collection of wry and witty poems that touch on every aspect of the roller-coaster ride that is childhood. From school to family to friends, from Grrrr to Hooray!, Judith Viorst takes us on a tour of feelings of all kinds in this thoughtful, funny, and charming collection of poetry that’s perfect for young readers just learning to sort out their own emotions.

by Judith Viorst and Isidre Mones - Picture

Last night somebody ate a whole box of jelly donuts. That somebody woke up with a terrible bellyache, and that somebody’s mom found the empty box and told that somebody that there are going to be consequences. That somebody is Alexander, and Alexander really hates consequences. So from now on, he is going to try his best to be the Best Boy Ever. For the complete and entire rest of his life. Starting right this very minute.

written by Judith Viorst, illustrated by Kevin Cornell - Youth Fiction
Lulu has put her tantrum-throwing days behind her. That is, until her parents announce that they are going on vacation—WITHOUT LULU. Not only that, but they are leaving her with the formidable Ms. Sonia Sofia Solinsky, who says hello by bellowing, “The Eagle has landed,” and smiles at you with the kind of smile that an alligator might give you before eating you for dinner.
 
The second her parents are out of the house, Lulu tries out several elaborate schemes to bring them straight back. But just when she seems to finally be making some headway, her babysitter reveals an astonishing secret…one that has Lulu crossing her fingers that her parents will go on vacation all the time—without her!
by Judith Viorst - Children's, Fiction

The stubbornly hilarious Lulu has decided it’s time to buckle down and earn some cash. After some failed attempts at lucrative gigs (baking cookies, spying, reading to old people), dog walking seems like a sensible choice. But Brutus, Pookie, and Cordelia are not interested in making the job easy, and the infuriatingly helpful neighborhood goody-goody, Fleischman, has Lulu at the end of her rope.