Anderson, Peggy Perry 1953-

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Anderson, Peggy Perry 1953-

Personal

Born December 2, 1953, in Tulsa, OK; daughter of Albert (a commercial artist) and Mary (a nurse) Perry; married Kurt Anderson (in sales), August 6, 1977; children: Brandon, Ariel, Haley. Education: Attended Oklahoma Christian College, 1972-74; Tulsa University, B.F.A. (commercial art), 1976. Religion: Church of Christ. Hobbies and other interests: Writing music, painting, playing the guitar, gardening, volunteering at a therapy ranch, horseback riding, mentoring elementary-school students.

Addresses

Home and office—Owasso, OK. E-mail—[email protected]

Career

Mobley Art and Design, graphic artist, 1976-91; elementary-school art teacher, 1998-2004; writer and illustrator; motivational speaker at elementary schools.

Member

Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators.

Awards, Honors

Governor's State of Excellence Award, 1989; Oklahoma Book Award finalist, 2005, for We Go in a Circle, 2007, for Chuck's Truck.

Writings

SELF-ILLUSTRATED

Time for Bed, the Babysitter Said, Houghton Mifflin (Boston, MA), 1987.

Wendle, What Have You Done?, Houghton Mifflin (Boston, MA), 1994.

To the Tub, Houghton Mifflin (Boston, MA), 1996.

Out to Lunch, Houghton Mifflin (Boston, MA), 1998.

Let's Clean Up!, Houghton Mifflin (Boston, MA), 2002.

We Go in a Circle, Houghton Mifflin (Boston, MA), 2002.

Chuck's Truck, Houghton Mifflin (Boston, MA), 2006.

Joe on the Go, Houghton Mifflin (Boston, MA), 2007.

Chuck's Band, Houghton Mifflin (Boston, MA), 2008.

ILLUSTRATOR

Virginia Poulet, Blue Bug Goes to the Library, Children's Press, 1979.

Virginia Poulet, Blue Bug's Book of Colors, Children's Press, 1981.

Virginia Poulet, Blue Bug Goes to School, Children's Press, 1985.

The Ugly Little Duck, Children's Press, 1986.

Virginia Poulet, Blue Bug Goes to Paris, Children's Press, 1986.

Virginia Poulet, Blue Bug's Christmas, Children's Press, 1987.

Virginia Poulet, Blue Bug Goes to Mexico, Children's Press, 1990.

Bessie Holland Heck, Danger on the Homestead, Dinosaur Press (Tulsa, OK), 1991.

Bessie Holland Heck, Taming the Homestead, Dinosaur Press (Tulsa, OK), 1994.

Sidelights

An elementary-school art teacher in her native Oklahoma, Peggy Perry Anderson is also the author and illustrator of several picture books, including titles that feature an unsinkable frog named Joe. Introduced to readers while avoiding bath time in To the Tub, Joe the frog is also out of his depth while dining with his parents at a fancy restaurant in Out to Lunch. Joe tackles a messy room in Let's Clean Up!, while in Joe on the Go the young frog feels pushed into the background during a family party until a loving wheelchair-bound grandmother turns her attention his way. In Booklist, Hazel Rochman cited Anderson's "bright, boisterous" ink-and-watercolor art, noting that Joe on the Go is "true to the small child's viewpoint of a world of powerful grown-ups." In her School Library Journal review of Let's Clean Up!, Sharon R. Pearce described Joe the frog as "joyful and innocently mischievous," while fellow School Library Journal contributor Maura Bresnahan wrote that Joe on the Go is enlivened by Anderson's engaging rhyming text. According to a Kirkus Reviews writer, the author/illustrator's "expressive" line drawings and use of vivid colors in Joe on the Go aid the comprehension of beginning readers by providing "visual narratives" to supplement the entertaining story.

In Anderson's self-illustrated picture book We Go in a Circle she introduces a dedicated race horse who loses his purpose after he receives a crippling leg injury. Although his leg eventually heals, the horse knows there

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is no spot for him back at the track. After he is moved to a place where the strange saddles confuse him, the horse learns that he will now work at a therapy ranch, where he can help handicapped youngsters struggling with physical disabilities. Anderson's "simple text and watercolor illustrations convey the pride of all involved," noted Doris Losey in School Library Journal, citing the unusual topic in We Go in a Circle.

Praised as "a near-perfect marriage of text and illustration" by a Kirkus Reviews writer, Anderson's picture book Chuck's Truck finds a farmer joined on a trip to town by the farm's resident duck. Then a chicken jumps aboard the truck, followed by a pair of dogs, a horse, and ultimately all the animals living on the man's farm. It surprises no one when the old blue truck breaks down, and Chuck is overjoyed when his old vehicle is replaced by a shiny new one! Using what Susan E. Murray described in School Library Journal as "vibrant and energetic" hues in portraying the story's animal characters, Anderson pairs her crayon-resist artwork with a humorous rhyming story that the Kirkus Reviews critic suggested would appeal to beginning readers. "Both the pithy rhyming text and the bold, expressive animals are sure to tickle preschoolers' funny bones," predicted Joanna Rudge Long in a review of Chuck's Truck for Horn Book.

An illustrator for several books by other authors, Anderson once told SATA that she has been drawing ever since she "could hold a crayon. It just seemed natural that one day I would be an artist," she explained. "I loved to read and that led me to an interest in illustration. I enjoy creating characters and making them come alive with action. I try to entertain when I make up stories and, of course, my greatest reward is watching children laugh and enjoy the books I've done.

"If I could share something I've learned from becoming a writer and illustrator it would be DON'T GIVE UP! Lots of rejection slips and lots of changes in the stories made me learn patience. Last, but not least, PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE! It really is worth the effort when a goal is reached or a dream comes true!"

Biographical and Critical Sources

PERIODICALS

Booklist, June 1, 1998, Annie Ayers, review of Out to Lunch, p. 1775; March 1, 2002, Gillian Engberg, review of Let's Clean Up!, p. 1138; March 15, 2007, Hazel Rochman, review of Joe on the Go, p. 50.

Horn Book, May-June, 2006, Joanna Rudge Long, review of Chuck's Truck, p. 288.

Kirkus Reviews, February 1, 2002, review of Let's Clean Up!, p. 176; April 1, 2006, review of Chuck's Truck, p. 341; March 1, 2007, review of Joe on the Go, p. 215.

Publishers Weekly, July 29, 1996, review of To the Tub, p. 87; March 30, 1998, review of Out to Lunch, p. 81.

School Library Journal, April, 1994, Mary Ann Bursk, review of Wendle, What Have You Done? p. 95; April, 1998, Lisa Smith, review of Out to Lunch, p. 91; April, 2002, Sharon R. Pearce, review of Let's Clean Up!, p. 100; October, 2004, Doris Losey, review of We Go in a Circle, p. 108; May, 2006, Susan E. Murray, review of Chuck's Truck, p. 84; March, 2007, Maura Bresnahan, review of Joe on the Go, p. 150.