Authors I'm Thankful For

Today's Thanksgiving, and so of course today's BookBlogWriMo prompt is all about being thankful! Specifically, we're talking authors here, and I'm thankful for quite a few! Let's start at the beginning, shall we?

The first author I'm thankful for is Ron Roy. His A to Z Mysteries series is the series that I still credit to this day for cultivating my early childhood love of reading. I truly fell in love with the A to Z Mysteries books, and they're the first books I can remember deeming "favorites". They helped me learn to love reading, mysteries, and ghost stories (which in turn led me to one of my favorite genres, horror), and I so grateful to have read Roy's series when I was an elementary school kid.

Next up would be Tamora Pierce. Her Song of the Lioness Quartet remains one of my favorite series to this day. I fell in love with it in elementary school and have been periodically rereading it ever since. Alanna was such an amazing character, and I have to credit her story with my love of action girl protagonists (a love which later encompassed other characters like the Sailor Scouts of Sailor Moon, the Mew Mews of Tokyo Mew Mew, Buffy Summers of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and more). I definitely wouldn't be the same person I am today if it wasn't for reading Tamora Pierce's feminist fantasy series so early in my life. (Again, as an elementary school kid.)

Then, of course, there's J.K. Rowling. Her Harry Potter series cast its spell over me as it did over so many other kids and teens (and adults!), and the progression of the series from short middle grade stories to young adult behemoths really helped smooth my transition from kidlit to adult fiction. It also helped cultivate my love for complex villains, antiheroes, and the Chekhov's Gun tropes, and it almost single-handedly lead to my introduction to Internet fandom (though I also credit the Yu-Gi-Oh! anime's English dub to a lesser extent).

Next up is Emily Rodda. She wrote the three Deltora Quest series, which are Deltora Quest, Deltora Shadowlands, and Dragons of Deltora. I got into these during elementary school, as well, upon the suggestion of a few friends, and I was totally in love with the books from the start! They didn't have as big an impact on me as either A to Z Mysteries, Song of the Lioness, or Harry Potter, but they're stories that I've added to my personal library and make sure to reread every few years. I love these books, and I highly recommend them to young fantasy fans!

Another author I'm thankful for would be Joanna Cole, the creator of the Magic School Bus series, but I'm not going to lie here: I didn't read the Magic School Bus books as a kid... but I did devour the television show! Magic School Bus remains one of my favorite children's programs to this day, and it essentially created my interest in science and animals. I truly adore this show, to the point of buying the DVD boxset a few years ago, despite having no children in my life to share it with. I'm quite content to rewatch it myself!

In a similar vein is Marc Brown, the create of the Arthur series, which is another childhood favorite of mine, though I'm a little horrified to see what changes have been made to the show in recent years. The books are still terrible endearing, though!

R.L. Stine, while not being an author whose books I particularly enjoy in retrospect, was a prolific YA horror author (and chapter book horror author, though I never read any of the Goosebumps books as a kid) whose Fear Street universe and multiple series helped nurture my love of horror. Reading these books as an adult, the stories themselves are far from "good" horror in most cases--in my opinion, of course, as I'm sure there are plenty of other readers who love them--but they definitely fueled my interest in the genre!

Other authors who cultivated my love of horror were Kathryn Reiss (author of Time Windows), Betty Wren Wright (author of Ghosts Beneath Our Feet), and Mary Downing Hahn (author of Wait Till Helen Comes), and so of course I'm grateful for them, too!

And lastly, I'm thankful for Mary Pope Osborne, as her Magic Tree House series was another favorite of mine, and its companion series, Magic Tree House Research Guides (later renamed to Magic Tree House Fact Trackers) helped encourage my love of nonfiction, education, and children's lit.

So, what about you? What authors are you thankful for? Let me know in the comments below!

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