Picture of author.

Louise Fitzhugh (1928–1974)

Author of Harriet the Spy

15+ Works 8,919 Members 145 Reviews 6 Favorited

About the Author

Series

Works by Louise Fitzhugh

Harriet the Spy (1964) — Author — 7,023 copies
The Long Secret (1965) 917 copies
Sport (1979) — Author; Cover artist, some editions — 375 copies
Harriet Spies Again (2002) 222 copies
Bang Bang You're Dead (1968) 28 copies
I Am Four (1982) 9 copies
I Am Three (1982) 9 copies
I Am Five (1852) 6 copies

Associated Works

Tagged

1960s (26) American (26) chapter book (79) childhood (23) childhood favorite (33) children (166) children's (370) children's book (25) children's books (45) children's fiction (82) children's literature (169) classic (68) classics (37) espionage (59) family (26) fiction (719) friends (34) friendship (128) girls (32) Harriet the Spy (50) humor (36) juvenile (72) juvenile fiction (62) kids (54) middle grade (38) mystery (203) New York (61) New York City (37) novel (75) own (38) read (112) realistic fiction (96) school (35) spy (128) T (26) to-read (139) writing (44) YA (80) young adult (121) youth (24)

Common Knowledge

Birthdate
1928-10-05
Date of death
1974-11-19
Gender
female
Nationality
USA
Country (for map)
USA
Birthplace
Memphis, Tennessee, USA
Place of death
New Milford, Connecticut, USA (Hospital)
Cause of death
brain aneurysm
Places of residence
Memphis, Tennessee, USA (Birth)
New York, New York, USA
Long Island, New York, USA
Bridgewater, Connecticut, USA
New Milford, Connecticut, USA (Death)
Education
Bard College
Art Students League
Cooper Union
Occupations
writer
illustrator
painter
children's book author
Awards and honors
New York Times Outstanding Books of the year (1964)
Sequoyah award (1967)
Short biography
Louise Fitzhugh was born to a wealthy and prominent family in Memphis, Tennessee. She began writing and drawing as a child. She attended Miss Hutchison's School and three different universities in the U.S., as well as a couple in Italy and France. She lived most of her adult life in New York City, where she studied at the Art Students League and Cooper Union. Louise was a successful visual artist and illustrator before becoming a children's book author, the work for which she is best remembered.
Her book Harriet the Spy, published in 1964, was a groundbreaking novel featuring a rude, inquisitive young heroine who was also extremely funny. The book was an instant hit and paved the way for other writers like Judy Blume to show contemporary children grappling with previously unmentionable problems. Harriet the Spy is a classic that is never out of print and continues to be loved by and entertain young readers.

Awards for her work included a New York Times Outstanding Books of the Year Award, an American Library Association Notable Book citation, and a New York Times Choice of Best Illustrated Books of the Year.
Louise died in 1974 at the age of 46. Her novel Nobody's Family Is Going to Change (1974) was adapted into a Tony-nominated musical called The Tap Dance Kid in 1983.

Members

Reviews

A counterculture children's novel that may be an acquired taste for some, like, for example, the Catcher in the Rye, but nonetheless unique and potentially avant-garde for its time. Its rebellious kookiness fits in perfectly with the estranged youth of the 60s, paving the way for kaleidoscopic Beatlemania, and Harriet's cocky stride on the iconic cover is the perfect bookend to Abbey Road. I didn't enjoy this novel much at first and thought its humour tasteless and crude, but when everything started to unravel about halfway through, after Harriet loses her notebook, I was forced to reassess my initial opinion. You don't really know the real Harriet till she hits rock bottom, and then you get to see just how emotionally blunted she has become as a result of her buried intelligence. Without a facet through which to express herself, Harriet becomes nothing but a vegetable (literally, an onion), and it takes Ole Golly's alternative methods to bring her back to herself.… (more)
 
Flagged
TheBooksofWrath | 120 other reviews | Apr 18, 2024 |
 
Flagged
BooksInMirror | Feb 19, 2024 |
 
Flagged
PatsyMurray | 1 other review | Nov 29, 2023 |
This sequel to Harriet the Spy is, in my opinion, a better and more enjoyable book than the original. The frame of the novel is the mystery of who is sending pointed notes anonymously to residents of a summer holiday resort. Harriet is a main character and is determined to find out who is doing it, but she is no longer the focus, as a lot of the book is from the POV of her timid friend Beth Ellen.

A major part of the book deals with the return from abroad of Beth Ellen's ghastly mother who has abandoned her for years to be raised by her grandmother, but now waltzes in, with her latest boyfriend in tow, and proceeds to treat her daughter like a possession while continuing to neglect her and dismiss her wishes. The book also has some vividly realised minor characters such as the members of the Jenkins family, and these provide the humour in the story. The final resolution is satisfying also as the clues have been there, but deftly sidestepped.… (more)
 
Flagged
kitsune_reader | 9 other reviews | Nov 23, 2023 |

Lists

Awards

You May Also Like

Associated Authors

Statistics

Works
15
Also by
3
Members
8,919
Popularity
#2,695
Rating
4.0
Reviews
145
ISBNs
149
Languages
9
Favorited
6

Charts & Graphs