The Library of Author Biogra­phies: Lynne Reid Banks

Sher­ri Liberman
  • Review
By – May 14, 2012
Born in Lon­don in 1929, Lynne Reid Banks soon found her life influ­enced by war. Banks and her moth­er fled Lon­don in 1940, dur­ing World War II, and set­tled in Cana­da for five years. It was dur­ing her teenage years in Saska­toon that Banks was exposed to the myths and leg­ends of the Cree Indi­ans. These sto­ries would lat­er inspire her to write her best­selling Indi­an in the Cup­board series. After return­ing to Lon­don, and com­plet­ing uni­ver­si­ty, Banks worked as a jour­nal­ist and was sent to Israel on assign­ment, where she met her hus­band, and lived for nine years. Her expe­ri­ence in Israel led to the pub­li­ca­tion of two books: Let­ters to My Israeli Sons: The Sto­ry of Jew­ish Sur­vival (1979) and Torn Coun­try: An Oral His­to­ry of the Israeli War of Inde­pen­dence (1982). Sher­ri Liberman’s biog­ra­phy suc­cess­ful­ly inter­twines the sto­ry of Banks’ life with the his­to­ry of the places she lived and shows how her writ­ing was influ­enced by her sur­round­ings and expe­ri­ences. This well-researched biog­ra­phy includes an inter­view with Banks, a time­line, select­ed reviews, a glos­sary, and a list of rec­om­men­da­tions for fur­ther read­ing. The pop­u­lar­i­ty of the Indi­an in the Cup­board series will like­ly increase this biography’s appeal to young adult read­ers. Ages 11 – 14.
Ali­son Kel­ly holds a B.A. in Amer­i­can His­to­ry from North­west­ern Uni­ver­si­ty and an MLS from UCLA. She is a librar­i­an at Stephen S. Wise Tem­ple Ele­men­tary School.

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