This Is Us

A tribute to Beverly Cleary

Me, age two or three, 1979.

My childhood library was a mile from our apartment, a route that took my mother and me across an overpass that ran through thick woods, down the quiet streets of a New Deal-built neighborhood with tiny rowhouses and an Art Deco movie theater in the town square. My mother didn’t drive, even though it was the early 1980s and every other mother did, so it was always a walk, pushing my little sister in an umbrella stroller. Whatever books I wanted to bring home, I would have to carry.

We made that walk frequently, and I had no way of…

On the Met rooftop, August 2019, keeping my composure.

The rooftops of New York City have long held a special magic for me. Back in 2011, when my first novel, The Kingdom of Childhood, was about to launch, I got invited to a book-industry party on the rooftop of a hotel on East 50th Street where I ran into Margaret Atwood. All debut authors feel a touch of imposter syndrome, but if you really want to feel a roaring, red-lining case of it, try being a mom from Maryland chatting up Margaret Atwood about your new novel while wearing a cocktail dress you picked up at TJ Maxx just…

Rebecca Coleman

Author of The Kingdom of Childhood. www.rebeccacoleman.com

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