Kennedy, Frances 1937-

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Kennedy, Frances 1937-


Born 1937, in Sioux City, IA; daughter of Donna Delle Philp; married; husband's name Jim.


Home—Dubuque, IA.


Author. Taught elementary school in Dubuque, IA.

Awards, Honors

Iowa Stories 2000 selection, for The Pickle Patch Bathtub.


The Pickle Patch Bathtub, illustrated by Sheila Aldridge, Tricycle Press (Berkeley, CA), 2004.

The Just-right, Perfect Present, illustrated by Sheila Aldridge, Tricycle Press (Berkeley, CA), 2007.


The Pickle Patch Bathtub was adapted for the stage by the Great Midwestern Educational Theatre Company, 2007.


Frances Kennedy, a former elementary school teacher living in Iowa, is the author of the highly regarded picture book The Pickle Patch Bathtub. Based on a true story and set in the 1920s, The Pickle Patch Bathtub centers on Donna, a Missouri farm girl who has outgrown her family's washtub. When Donna's mother in- forms her that they do not have the money to purchase a new one, the youngster enlists her brothers and sisters to help her grow cucumbers and sell them to the local pickle factory. "Some old-fashioned lessons of delayed gratification and family cooperation are subtly conveyed," observed a critic in Kirkus Reviews. Linda L. Walkins, writing in School Library Journal, praised the combination of Kennedy's narrative and Sheila Aldridge's illustrations, stating that "both text and artwork vividly bring the past to life."

Donna and her family return in The Just-right, Perfect Present, "an engaging peek at family life in earlier days," according to a contributor in Kirkus Reviews. When her grandparents announce that they will be celebrating their fiftieth anniversary in their apple orchard, Donna chooses to recite a poem in their honor. When she learns that her cousin has selected the same verse, the girl is forced to learn a new poem, with unexpectedly delightful results. In Booklist, Carolyn Phelan remarked that Kennedy's tale "is infused with memory yet is never merely nostalgic."

Biographical and Critical Sources


Booklist, July 1, 2007, Carolyn Phelan, review of The Just-right, Perfect Present, p. 65.

Kirkus Reviews, April 1, 2004, review of The Pickle Patch Bathtub, p. 332; May 1, 2007, review of The Just-right, Perfect Present.

School Library Journal, October, 2004, Linda L. Walkins, review of The Pickle Patch Bathtub, p. 120; November, 2007, Martha Simpson, review of The Just-right, Perfect Present, p. 93.


Sioux City, (May 2, 2006), Dolly A. Butz, "Students Learn about Iowa as First Lady Gives Them Books."

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Kennedy, Frances 1937-

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