Child's Lit Class - DWJ

Jon Noble jon_p_noble at
Wed Aug 6 16:58:49 EDT 2003

Its already Thursday here in Oz, but I'll give this
one a go. I think the reason I like DWJ so much is her
Unexpectedness. She always manages to suprise the
reader, usually several times in a book, and she often
manages to turn our expectations on their heads or
inside out in the course of this. You can never be
sure how a DWJ story is going to resolve itself, and
when you finish you realise that all the clues had
been there all along, but you thought they'd meant
something quite different. I realise that this is a
vast generalisation and doesn't apply equally to all
her work, but it is my general impression. She loves
to have fun with fantasy as a genre (witness the Tough
As to my introduction to DWJ, this is something that
has been discussed on this list quite often (so if
others don't reply you may try having a look in the
archives) but for me I saw Spellcoats listed as a
recomended YA novel at an inservice training day
somewhat more than 20 years ago (along with a great
many others both fantasy and other). The other
recomended fantasy was by authors I knew (Tanith Lee
and Patricia McKillip were two) so I kept a lookout
for Spellcoats (I didn't remember DWJ's name) and a
few years later came across a second hand copy, read
it and was very impressed. However it was a few years
later that I read Archer's Goon and thought "hey this
person seems to get it right all the time". From the
mid '80s I was actively seeking DWJ books (but still
haven't got the lot).
Archer's Goon is still one of my favorites, along with
Deep Secret.


--- Elizabeth Crowe <lizcrowe at> wrote:
> I'm going to be giving an oral presentation on DWJ
> to my Children's Lit
> class this Thursday.  No one in the class, including
> the teacher has read
> anything by DWJ.  I thought they might enjoy hearing
> other opinions
> besides mine about her work.  If you'd like to share
> something, perhaps
> what you like about her writing, how you were
> introduced to her novels,
> which ones are your favorites and why, etc., I'll
> pass your opinions on
> to my class.  They are teachers from elementary
> level up to high school. 
> Let me know your first name, where you're from and
> your age (if you want
> to).
> Thanks for your input,
> Elizabeth
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