The “Maker” Behind the Very Best Day
by Alexie Basil
Go behind the scenes to learn five things you may not have known about Amy Krouse Rosenthal, the author behind this week’s Dollar Deal, Yes Day!, and other classroom-favorite picture books like Friendshape and the award-winning Exclamation Mark.
Who dreamt up the very best day of the year? Amy Krouse Rosenthal!
True to the spirit of Yes Day!, she loved saying “YES!” to projects of many sizes and mediums. We celebrate Amy this week by discovering more about the things she made and her impact on the world of children’s literature and beyond.
According to her personal website, Amy loved to make children’s books, grown-up books, short films, salads, connections with the universe, something out of nothing, and wishes.
We already knew how wonderful her children’s books were, and so it was awesome to learn more about her other ventures!
For example, Amy’s essays were featured at the TED conference; NPR; the New York Times; Huffington Post; Time; O, The Oprah Magazine; and more. Plus her memoir, Encyclopedia of an Ordinary Life, was named one of the top-10 memoirs of the decade by Amazon. This was the basis for her book Encyclopedia of Me: My Life from A to Z!
Smart Girls is an organization “dedicated to helping young people cultivate their authentic selves.” They have featured interviews with many incredible women, including: Representative Stacey Abrams; theoretical physicist Dr. Chiara Mingarelli; senior policy advisor in the Obama White House Dr. Knatokie Ford; and, of course, Amy Krouse Rosenthal!
Amy was featured in a special “Smartists” interview conducted by her daughter, Paris. You can read it here. It’s a charming conversation about pet peeves, their mother-daughter relationship, and what advice Amy wants to give Paris before she goes to college.
Amy’s husband, Jason, created the Amy Krouse Rosenthal Foundation in Amy’s honor to provide funding for ovarian cancer research and child literacy initiatives.
They strive to educate women about the warning signs of ovarian cancer and, like Scholastic Book Clubs, believe in the power of putting great books into children’s hands.
Ten days before she passed on March 13, 2017, Amy penned a heart-filled and heart-wrenching essay for the New York Times, entitled “You May Want to Marry My Husband.”
In it, she wrote about her and her husband’s journey together—from their meeting, to her diagnosis with ovarian cancer, and ultimately when she encouraged him to date and find happiness after her inevitable passing.
Her essay moved thousands of readers. And a year later, her husband, Jason, wrote a response of his own, “My Wife Said You May Want to Marry Me.”
She had such a positive impact on so many people at Scholastic Book Clubs that, in 2017, we put together this post to celebrate the way she inspired others.
Do you have something about Amy Krouse Rosenthal that you would like to share? We’d love to hear from you! Please post on social media using the hashtag #ScholasticBookClubs.
Amy Krouse Rosenthal (1965–2017) was an American author of books for all ages, a filmmaker, and a radio show host. She was a prolific writer, publishing more than 30 children’s books between 2005 and 2017. She collaborated on several picture books with illustrator Tom Lichtenheld, including the New York Times bestsellers Duck! Rabbit! and Exclamation Mark.
New York Times bestsellers Shark vs. Train and Goodnight, Goodnight, Construction Site, which has been on the bestseller list for over three years. His most recent collaboration is the Groovy Joe series with popular entertainer Eric Litwin. For more information, visit tomlichtenheld.com.
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