Special thanks to Anita Silvey for answering 5 questions about her recently featured book – Untamed: The Wild Life of Jane Goodall
The author of 100 Best Books for Children and 500 Great Books for Teens Anita Silvey has devoted 40 years to promoting books that will turn the young—and families—into readers. To do this she has appeared frequently on NPR, The Today Show, 60 Minutes, and radio programs in the United States and Canada to talk about books for children and teenagers. As Publisher’s Weekly has said “It would be hard to find a more authoritative voice than Anita Silvey.” – From Anita’s Homepage
#1 – What was the impetus for Untamed?
Jane Goodall was approaching her 80th birthday and it seemed a good time to publish a book that looked at her entire life. There were many books about her, including her own My Life with Chimpanzees, but all tended to focus on her early scientific work.
#2 – With such a long and varied career, how did you decide what to feature in her life for kids?
Before I begin a work of nonfiction, I decide what story I want to tell. The material that supports the story is more likely to be included. Untamed tells the story of a girl, Jane, who loved animals and began in childhood to observe their behavior. So her early years, her trip to Africa, and her arrival in Gombe get a great deal of attention in the book.
#3 – What do you hope that kids come away with from reading about the life of Jane Goodall?
Jane’s life is an inspiration to many children, even before they pick up Untamed. She found a way to take a childhood passion and turn it into her life’s work. She has been an advocate for animal rights and the ethical treatment of animals throughout her life. She believes that every life matters, and that young people can start to take action now to make our planet a better place.
#4 – Comments about the book highlighted the graphics and photographs used in the book. How did you balance your text with the images that were used?
An art director and designer made all the choices about what illustrative material to use and where to place it. I provided several written pieces that I wanted as side bars or double-page spreads. They worked their magic.
#5 – Are you working on any new books/projects you can tell us about?
Yes in August of 2016 Let Your Voice Be Heard: The Life and Times of Pete Seeger will be published. I’ve worked on this book for 8 years.
[Image Credit: http://www.anitasilvey.com/images/photos/AS_4x5_300dpi_color.jpg ]