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Born May 23, 1898 (or 1903, sources can't agree) in Los Angeles. Scott O'Dell grew up in southern California when it was still a frontier. His father was a railroad worker, so the family moved often, and seems like they always got to live in cool places. O'Dell spent a lot of time outside as a boy, and got to do such cool stuff as paddling out to sea on logs, prying up abalones, and hunting for fish in gloomyspooky sea caves. He had to grow up to write thrilling stories.

O'Dell attended Occidental College in 1919, University of Wisconsin in 1920, Stanford University from 1920 to 1921, and the University of Rome in 1925. He said to hell with graduation and took only classes that interested him and might help in a writing career.

As an adult, O'Dell worked as a cameraman, most notably on the filming of Ben Hur. He got to use the first technicolor camera. He enlisted in the Air Force and served in Texas during World War II. He was a book editor for an L.A. paper, then became a full-time writer in 1934, first writing both fiction and nonfiction for adults. In the late 1950s, he began to write for kids. Island of the Blue Dolphins, written as a protest against hunting, was his first book for young readers, and immediately won the 1961 Newbery Award.

O'Dell is a BIG DEAL to the world of children's literature, and here's why. He received one Newbery Medal, three Newbery Honor Awards, and the Hans Christian Andersen Award for lifetime achievement. In 1981, O'Dell established one of his own, the Scott O'Dell Award for Historical Fiction. He's got a talent for bringing vibrant settings to young readers, in fascinating and always accessible language. He wrote twenty-six children's books before his death in 1989.


Books:

The 290 (out of print)

Alexandra

The Amethyst Ring (out of print)

The Black Pearl (Newbery Honor)

Black Star, Bright Dawn

The Captive

Carlota

The Castle in the Sea

Child of Fire

The Cruise of the Arctic Star (out of print)

Dark Canoe (out of print)

The Hawk That Dare Not Hunt by Day

Island of the Blue Dolphins (Newbery Award, 1961)

Journey To Jericho

Kathleen, Please Come Home (out of print)

The King's Fifth (Newbery Honor)

My Name Is Not Angelica

The Road to Damietta

Sarah Bishop

The Serpent Never Sleeps : A Novel of Jamestown and Pocahontas

Sing Down the Moon (Newbery Honor)

The Spanish Smile (out of print)

Streams to the River, River to the Sea: A Novel of Sacagewea

Thunder Rolling In the Mountains

The Treasure of Topo-El-Bampo (out of print)

Venus Among the Fishes (unfinished manuscript, finished by O'Dell's wife, published posthumously)

Zia (sequel to Island of the Blue Dolphins)



thanks to :
http://www.lib.usm.edu/~degrum/findaids/odell.htm#bio
http://www.mcdougallittell.com/lit/guest/o_dell/
and our friend
www.amazon.com

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