Menendez, Shirley (C.) 1937-

views updated

MENENDEZ, Shirley (C.) 1937-


Born February 5, 1937, in Richmond, VA; daughter of Daniel and Madeline (Euting) Corbin; married Albert John Menendez (an author and editor), June 15, 1974. Ethnicity: "White." Education: Mary Baldwin College, B.A., 1961; Drexel University, M.L. S., 1965.


Home—12625 Timonium Terrace, Gaithersburg, MD 20878-3428. Office—Georgetown University, 37th and O Streets NW, Washington, DC 20057. E-mail—[email protected].


Federal Reserve Bank, Philadelphia, PA, cataloger and reference librarian, 1963-65; Prince George's County Memorial Library System, Prince George's County, MD, adult services librarian, 1965-69, branch librarian at the College Park Library, 1969-71, assistant to the assistant director for public services, 1971-78; Westchester Library System, Westchester County, NY, assistant director, 1979-81; Georgetown University, Washington, DC, coordinator of administrative services for the Kennedy Institute of Ethics, 1981, coordinator of administrative services for the office of the president, 1982-86, director of housing services, 1987—.


Vicennial Medal, Georgetown University, 2003.


Allie, the Christmas Spider (picture book), illustrated by Maggie Kneen, Dutton (New York, NY), 2002.


Maryland Trivia, Rutledge Hill Press (Nashville, TN), 1992.

New Jersey Trivia, Rutledge Hill Press (Nashville, TN), 1993.

South Carolina Trivia, Rutledge Hill Press (Nashville, TN), 1996.

(As Shirley C. Menendez) Christmas Songs Made in America: Favorite Holiday Melodies and the Stories of Their Origins, Cumberland House (Nashville, TN), 1999.

Joy to the World: Sacred Christmas Songs through the Ages, Cumberland House (Nashville, TN), 2001.

B Is for Blue Crab: A Maryland Alphabet, illustrated by Laura Stutzman, Sleeping Bear Press (Chelsea, MI), 2004.


Shirley Menendez's first children's book, Allie, the Christmas Spider, is a "gentle story … true to the holiday spirit," as Hazel Rochman wrote in Booklist. Allie the spider has taken up residence in the house of a poor rabbit family. The rabbit-parents have told their daughter, Beth, that their Christmas will be very simple this year, with homemade decorations and presents, because the rabbits cannot afford anything else. But after Beth spares Allie's life on Christmas Eve, Allie spends the entire night covering the family's Christmas tree in a beautiful, sparkling garland of spider webs. "The rabbit family is duly impressed with their Christmas surprise," a critic explained in Kirkus Reviews, and Allie ends the book considering what kind of art she should try next.

Menendez told CA: "My husband and I are Christmas buffs and have collected over 1,000 books about the customs and traditions of Christmas, as well as novels, mysteries, and stories with Christmas settings. We especially enjoy the music of the Christmas season, which inspired us to research the stories behind our familiar Christmas songs and carols. This resulted in the publication of two books, Christmas Songs Made in America and Joy to the World. And, of course, my first children's book is about a little spider who gives a special gift to the rabbit family at Christmas."



Booklist, September 15, 2002, Hazel Rochman, review of Allie, the Christmas Spider, p. 246.

Kirkus Reviews, November 1, 2002, review of Allie, the Christmas Spider, pp. 1622-1623.

Publishers Weekly, September 24, 2001, review of Joy to the World: Sacred Christmas Songs through the Ages, p. 61.

School Library Journal, October, 2002, Eva Mitnick, review of Allie, the Christmas Spider, p. 61.