Are You There, America? It’s Her, Judy Blume

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With guest host Jane Clayson.

Beloved children’s author Judy Blume is writing for adults again – on disaster. Judy Blume joins us.

In this file photo, Judy Blume attends LA Times Festival of Books, Saturday, April. 21, 2012, at the USC Campus in Los Angeles.  (AP)
In this file photo, Judy Blume attends LA Times Festival of Books, Saturday, April. 21, 2012, at the USC Campus in Los Angeles. (AP)

Super children’s author Judy Blume has been called the patron saint of adolescent angst. Twenty eight novels. Eighty five million copies sold. “Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing.” “Are you There, God?  It’s Me, Margaret.” “Forever.” Legions of fans spanning generations. Now Judy Blume is out with one of her rare books for adults. It’s called “In the Unlikely Event.” It goes back to the time and place of her own youth and a terrible 58 days when three passenger planes crashed into one town in New Jersey. Her hometown. And that's where the story begins. This hour On Point: a conversation with Judy Blume.
-- Jane Clayson


Judy Blume, beloved author, writer and novelist. Author of the new book, "In the Unlikely Event," as well as "Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret,"  "Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing" and "Superfudge," among many others. (@judyblume)

From The Reading List

Jezebel: Even in Adult Fiction, Judy Blume Never Strays Far From Adolescence — "Blume’s books have been divided, like most authors’ books are, into books for children, books for young adults, and books for fully-grown adults. But the strength of her work is her understanding that the lines between those age groupings are blurry when it comes to our emotional states. There are children who act as adults, adults who act as children. Perhaps this is why her young adult books have been considered so revolutionary, because Blume is fluent in the transience of that stage in life: neither adult nor child, a person trapped between two worlds, struggling to figure out which one they belong in."

New York Times Magazine: Judy Blume Knows All Your Secrets — "For those of us who were teenagers in the early ’80s and in the decade before — 'Are You There God?' was published in 1970 — there was no Sassy magazine, there was no Internet; there was just Judy Blume, planting the radical idea, for generations of women, that their bodies would be, should be, a source of pleasure and not of shame. Her credibility was total, a young person’s raw perspective, filtered — subtly — through the common sense of a frank, funny woman."

The Believer: Judy Blume In Conversation With Lena Duma — "But there’s no book or play or series or anything that speaks to everyone, because then it wouldn’t speak to anyone. And that’s what I say when people want to ban books from the library. If all you leave in the library are books that you think speak to everyone, what are you going to have? You’ll have nothing. And when you spoke about having read Lolita, I mean, you got it just right. This is what I’ve been yapping about: let the kids read the books. If they have a question, they’ll come to you. If they don’t, they’ll just read right over it."

Read An Excerpt Of "In The Unlikely Event" By Judy Blume

This program aired on July 2, 2015.


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