More About the Author
Patricia Brennan Demuth: Children's Book Author
Patricia grew up in little Iowa town with a big family and imagination. After college, she moved to the Big Apple (New York, New York) where imaginations could feast. Patricia did her first book there with her husband, photographer Jack Demuth, on the life of a mounted police horse (CITY HORSE, Dodd, Mead). They shadowed 5-year-old Hannon, who had grown up in quiet green pastures in Tennessee, as he braved the dizzying turmoil of New York City streets, rolled in his first snowfall, and galloped on Coney Island beaches for exercise. From midtown Manhattan, Patricia moved with her family to an Illinois farm where she and Jack spent an entire year documenting the life of a farm kid (JOEL GROWING UP A FARM MAN, Dodd Mead).
Then, to Patricia's surprise and delight, a mischievous rhyming parrot chirped its way into her imagination. Who could resist him? Not Patricia. She wrote her first picture book, MAX THE BAD-TALKING PARROT (Dutton, Inc.). More picture books and an early chapter book would follow, their cast of characters tickling the funny bones of young fans.
Meanwhile, Patricia started to share fascinating facts about the natural world as she she wrote a series of nonfiction books for the All Aboard Reading series (Grosset & Dunlap). She became well-known for writing simple fluent prose packed with juicy information: snakes that could swallow a whole pig in one bite (SNAKES, Grosset & Dunlap); smoking chimneys on the deep-sea floor with giant worms clinging to them (WAY DOWN DEEP, Grosset & Dunlap); and huge graying gorillas called silverbacks who ruled their groups like wise old kings and beat their chests to scare away leopards (GORILLAS, Grosset & Dunlap).
In all, Patricia has authored 17 children's books in fiction and nonfiction genres. Her books have won numerous awards including Best Children's Book, Society of Midland Authors; Georgia Children's Storybook Award; Outstanding Science Book (Children's Book Council and National Science Teachers Association); Outstanding Book in Social Sciences (National Council for the Social Studies and Children's Book Council); Sequoyah's Children's Books Masterlist; Children's Choices of 1987 (International Reading Association and the Children's Book Council); and Children's Books of the Year (Child Study Children's Book Committee at Bank Street College).
Today, after a break from publishing, Patricia is happily writing books again. Most days find her tapping away at her laptop on the patio in the lovely garden tended by her husband Bill Reich. A sequel to MAX THE BAD-TALKING PARROT is in the works, along with another picture book photographed by Jack Demuth. Patricia's imagination still seeks new vistas and she is completing her first full-length novel for young readers. Stay tuned.