Meddaugh, Susan 1944-
Meddaugh, Susan 1944-
Surname is pronounced "med-aw"; born October 4, 1944, in Montclair, NJ; daughter of John Stuart (a naval captain and insurance executive) and Justine Meddaugh; married Harry L. Foster (an editor), November, 1982; children: Niko (son). Education: Wheaton College (Norton, MA) B.A., 1966. Politics: "Unaffiliated and opinionated." Hobbies and other interests: Reading mysteries, parenting.
Home and office—56 Maple St., Sherborn, MA 01770.
Author and illustrator. Houghton Mifflin, Co., Boston, MA, designer and art director in trade division of children's book department, 1968-78; freelance writer and illustrator of children's books, 1978—.
Children's Choice Award, International Reading Association/Children's Book Council (IRA/CBC), for Beast; Parents' Choice Literature Award (with Verna Aardema), 1985, for Bimwili and the Zimwi: A Tale from Zanzibar; Best Books selection, Parenting magazine, for Hog-Eye; Reading Magic Award, Parenting magazine, for Cinderella's Rat; Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Platinum Award, for The Best Place; Notable Book selection, American Library Association, Children's Choice Award, IRA/CBC, Notable Book selection, National Council of Teachers of English, California Young Readers Award, Georgia State Readers Award, New York Times Best Illustrated Books citation, 1992, Charlotte Award, New York State Reading Association, and Keystone State Reading Association award, both 1994, Pennsylvania Young Reader's Award, and Nebraska Golden Sower Award, both 1995, and Parents' Choice Award, all for Martha Speaks; Parents' Choice Illustration Award, 1994, Volunteer State Award, Tennessee Association of School Librarians, 1999, Reading Magic Award, Parenting magazine, and Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Platinum Award, all for Martha Calling; Parent's Choice Award, Pick of the List, American Bookseller Association, and Reading Magic Award, Parenting magazine, all for Martha Blah Blah; Children's Book Award, New England Booksellers Association, 1998, for body of work; Parents' Choice Award, for Five Little Piggies, by David Martin; Children's Choice Award, IRA/CBC, 2001, and Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Platinum Award, for Martha and Skits.
Too Short Fred, Houghton (Boston, MA), 1978.
Maude and Claude Go Abroad, Houghton (Boston, MA), 1980.
Beast, Houghton (Boston, MA), 1981.
Too Many Monsters, Houghton (Boston, MA), 1982.
Tree of Birds, Houghton (Boston, MA), 1990.
The Witches' Supermarket, Houghton (Boston, MA), 1991.
Surprise! (wordless picture book), Houghton (Boston, MA), 1991.
Martha Speaks, Houghton (Boston, MA), 1992.
Martha Calling, Houghton (Boston, MA), 1994.
Hog-Eye, Houghton (Boston, MA), 1995.
Martha Blah Blah, Houghton (Boston, MA), 1996.
Cinderella's Rat, Houghton (Boston, MA), 1997.
Martha Walks the Dog, Houghton (Boston, MA), 1998.
The Best Place, Houghton (Boston, MA), 1999.
Martha and Skits, Houghton (Boston, MA), 2000.
Lulu's Hat, Houghton (Boston, MA), 2002.
Harry on the Rocks, Houghton (Boston, MA), 2003.
Perfectly Martha, Houghton (Boston, MA), 2004.
The Witch's Walking Stick, Houghton (Boston, MA), 2005.
Just Teenie, Houghton (Boston, MA), 2006.
Meddaugh's books have been translated into Spanish, French, Japanese, Chinese, Swedish, and Danish.
Anne Merrick Epstein, Good Stones, Houghton (Boston, MA), 1977.
Carol-Lynn Waugh, My Friend Bear, Atlantic Monthly Press (Boston, MA), 1982.
Jean and Claudio Marzollo, Red Sun Girl, Dial (New York, NY), 1983.
Jean and Claudio Marzollo, Blue Sun Ben, Dial (New York, NY), 1984.
Jean and Claudio Marzollo, Ruthie's Rude Friends, Dial (New York, NY), 1984.
Verna Aardema, Bimwili and the Zimwi: A Tale from Zanzibar, Dial (New York, NY), 1985.
Jean and Claudio Marzollo, The Silver Bear, Dial (New York, NY), 1987.
Ruby Dee, Two Ways to Count to Ten: A Liberian Folktale, Holt (New York, NY), 1988.
Beatrice Schenk de Regniers, The Way I Feel—Sometimes, Clarion (New York, NY), 1988.
John Ciardi, The Hopeful Trout, and Other Limericks, Houghton (Boston, MA), 1989.
Eve Bunting, No Nap, Clarion (New York, NY), 1989.
Eve Bunting, In the Haunted House, Clarion (New York, NY), 1990.
Eve Bunting, A Perfect Father's Day, Clarion (New York, NY), 1991.
Susan Wojciechowski, The Best Halloween of All, Crown (New York, NY), 1992.
Linda Breiner Milstein, Amanda's Perfect Hair, Tambourine (New York, NY), 1993.
Jennifer Armstrong, That Terrible Baby, Tambourine (New York, NY), 1994.
Sarah Wilson, Good Zap, Little Grog, Candlewick Press (Cambridge, MA), 1995.
Jennifer A. Ericsson, The Most Beautiful Kid in the World, Tambourine (New York, NY), 1996.
David Martin, Five Little Piggies (stories), Candlewick Press (Cambridge, MA), 1998.
Martha Speaks was adapted as part of the play If You Give a Mouse a Cookie, and Other Story Books, produced in New York, NY, 2006.
Susan Meddaugh writes and illustrates children's books with the eye of someone who knows the trade inside and out. This is no coincidence; Meddaugh worked as a designer and art director for children's books at the Boston-based publishing house Houghton Mifflin before setting out on her own as a writer and illustrator of such books as Too Many Monsters, Hog-Eye, The Witches' Supermarket, and Just Teenie. "Meddaugh has a gift for building a picture book out of one funny scene after another," wrote Mary Lou Burket in Five Owls. Her quirky and humorous works have won awards as well as earned her a large fan following for one of her most popular characters: Martha, a hound with an attitude, takes center stage in books such as Martha Speaks, Martha Walks the Dog, and Martha and Skits.
Meddaugh was born in Montclair, New Jersey, in 1944. "Growing up in my family was a little like being in an extended George Burns and Gracie Allen routine," she once explained, referencing a popular television program from the 1950s. "My younger brother, John, and I were the audience for our parents' performance. There was also a fine supporting cast of characters (relatives) contributing to the plot. Housework was not high on my mother's list of priorities. She was dramatic and whimsical." Meddaugh's father, a retired Navy captain,
had participated in African landings and in the South Pacific theater during World War II; his "wry comments and a sort of humorous view of the world" kept the Meddaugh family living on the lighter side.
A shy child, Meddaugh enjoyed fantasy games and loved to draw. Books were an important ingredient of her childhood, with stories by Dr. Seuss and Curious George by H.A. Rey particular favorites. Meddaugh's father was a fine storyteller, and her mother read to her regularly. But it was drawing and painting that attracted Meddaugh the most, and the two came together during an innovative class she attended while in high school. "We had a combined art and English section," the author/illustrator explained. "And it was a revelation for me. It was very new for its day, and the instructors were enthusiastic. They said, ‘Just be original. Have one original thought and you’ll get an ‘A’."
After graduation, Meddaugh enrolled at Wheaton College, where she majored in French while also studying painting techniques. Following college, she realized that her French degree was not going land her a career, so she went to New York, portfolio in hand, and landed a job as a "Girl Friday" at an advertising agency. From New York City, Meddaugh moved on to Boston, where she took a temporary job at Houghton Mifflin that even- tually became a ten-year stint in children's books. "Publishing was different then," Meddaugh recalled. "I even applied for the job wearing white gloves. The pace was leisurely, and I basically learned on the job."
As a designer of children's books, she learned the basics of the thirty-two-page format and the technique of pre-separated art in which illustrators did the work computer scanners now do, drawing separate black-and-white sketches mapping the location of yellow, red, and blue in each illustration. Responsible for hiring illustrators for book projects, she increasingly began to wonder if her own illustration skills could be put to use some day. "A good picture book is a very specific form," Meddaugh explained. "Both art and text move the story…. There can be no superfluous parts, not in such a short format."
Meddaugh's first book, Too Short Fred, was a transitional work in which she moved from fine art "to a more expressive and exaggerated form [in which] … I chose to portray animals." In the book, the title character, an undersized cat, faces five trials in which he must overcome his height disadvantage. The school bully stealing Fred's lunch gets worm sandwiches for his troubles; at a school dance Fred is partnered with a much taller girl who turns out to be a great dancer; and a race down a snowy hill turns into victory for the cat when he falls and rolls to the bottom first. Working in
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colored pencils, Meddaugh drew her cats to easily bring to mind humans, and her trademark whimsy and humor was already detectable. Describing the illustrations as "rich in texture," a Publishers Weekly contributor described Too Short Fred as "fun and reassuring for boys and girls who are different, in any way."
In creating Maude and Claude Go Abroad, Meddaugh was inspired by a brother-sister relationship like her own, in which the older sister looks out for the younger sibling. In her book, the Foxes put their two children, Maude and Claude, aboard an ocean liner sailing for France. En route, Claude falls overboard, and Maude—who has been instructed by her parents to watch out for him—does the only sensible thing: she jumps in after him. Told in punning and humorous rhyme, the story follows the adventures of the two as they hitch a ride with a whale that, before delivering them safely to France, must first outwit the harpooners shadowing it. To help the whale, Maude perches on the creature's spout so that it looks like the siblings are riding a floating island.
In Beast, Meddaugh introduces human characters in the form of a little girl and her family, as well as a big, furry beast that comes out of the forest to terrorize them. The young child does not think the beast is as bad as her family believes and, more curious than scared, she learns that the creature has need for more than food: it is lonely and needs a friend, too. Using "singularly imaginative color paintings" and a rhythmic text, Meddaugh created a story that a Publishers Weekly reviewer felt children would be "thrilled to discover."
After creating the 1982 picture book Too Many Monsters, Meddaugh took time out focus on her family, although she continued to illustrate the works of authors such as Verna Aardema and Eve Bunting, among others. "It's clearly not as rewarding doing illustrations for somebody else's book as for your own," she once admitted. "But it is still enjoyable. Still a challenge. It's the kind of work that gives me both freedom and structure. I need that mix."
Meddaugh returned to the role of author/illustrator in 1990's Tree of Birds, the story of Harry, a boy who brings an injured bird home with him, only to be inundated by an enormous flock of birds: all Green Tufted Tropicals in search of their lost flock-mate. The birds nest outside Harry's house and refuse to leave, even when Harry tries dressing up in a cat costume or when the temperature drops and snow is on the way. Although Harry grows attached to his convalescing bird and does not want to lose it, when the birds outside turn blue from the cold, he must set his new feathered friend free. In a surprise ending, the entire flock ends up wintering at Harry's house. Mary M. Burns, writing in Horn Book, praised Tree of Birds for its "expressive watercolors" and "tongue-in-cheek text," calling it "funny without being forced." "Children will reach for it again and again," predicted a Publishers Weekly re- viewer, while Zena Sutherland, in a review for Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books, dubbed the picture book "wildly anthropomorphic."
According to New York Times Book Review contributor M.P. Dunleavey, Meddaugh's work includes a "particular talent: combining words with colorful, cartoony illustrations to tell stories that are engaging and often laugh-out-loud funny." In her illustrations, she frequently drafts characters from the animal kindom, as in the picture books Hog-Eye, Cinderella's Rat, and The Best Place. In Hog-Eye an adventurous pig outsmarts a hungry wolf, resulting in an updated twist on the old folktale scenario that involves pig soup. Cinderella's Rat, another fairy-tale outtake, introduces one of the rats who was turned by the fairy godmother into a coachman, as he now recounts his night at the ball. "Humor permeates the tale, while clever twists shape it," commented a reviewer from Kirkus Reviews, who compared Meddaugh's treatment in Cinderella's Rat to the works of author-illustrator William Steig. In The Best Place, an elderly wolf is prompted to leave his cozy home when he suspects that the home may not be "the best place" after all. Journeying far and wide, the wolf encounters nothing to surpass his old home; alas, when he returns home, he discovers that the house has been sold to a family of rabbits. The rabbits have no intention of vacating in favor of the former owner, no matter how long his teeth. Ultimately, the neighborhood pitches in to construct a new home for the wolf that is just as "best" as the old one. "Meddaugh combines understated humor with her expressive watercolor illustrations to produce a delightful book," stated School Library Journal contributor Tom S. Hurlburt, while in Publishers Weekly a critic maintained that the author's "airy, lighthearted watercolors evoke a pleasant animal idyll" in "a clever picture book about attitude."
Meddaugh's son, Niko, was the inspiration behind the creation of one of Meddaugh's most popular animal characters, who first appears in The Witches' Supermarket. "It was at Halloween," Meddaugh explained, "and Niko asked me where the witches got all their stuff—the dried spiders and all that. And then he wondered if they didn't have a witches' supermarket. Well, I just couldn't let that one go." The result was the first incarnation of the Meddaugh family pet—a stray dog who had been given to an initially reluctant but animal-loving Meddaugh by a friend—in print. In the book young Helen and her dog Martha end up in a very strange supermarket indeed, where all the other customers are dressed in witches' garb. Helen realizes these are not just Halloween costumes at about the same time as the witches realize that Helen is only in costume for Halloween. Martha the dog, in a cat costume, saves the day when she wreaks a bit of havoc with the witches' real cats. A Kirkus Reviews critic dubbed the book "imaginative Halloween fun," while Liza Bliss, writing in School Library Journal, called The Witches' Supermarket "a book that's as much fun as Halloween itself."
If Martha, the family dog, ate alphabet soup, Niko asked his artist mom, would she be able to talk? This question supplied Meddaugh with a mental image of their pet pit bull swallowing noodle alphabets; instead of going to her stomach, they went directly to her doggy brain. The resulting book, Martha Speaks, not only has Martha talking, but talking too much. The chatty pup redeems herself, however, by saving the family from burglars through use of her newfound speech.
The popularity of Martha Speaks led Meddaugh to use the crafty canine in several more books, each featuring artwork that is loose and cartoon-like and rendered in colored pencil. In Martha Calling the talking dog enters a radio call-in contest and wins the family a vacation weekend. Martha soon learns, however, that there are no dogs allowed in the hotel where the family is booked. Not to worry: To gain admittance, the pup disguises herself as a wheelchair-bound granny and enjoys one adventure after another. A reviewer in Parents' Choice applauded the sequel while cautioning that adult readers might suffer "hoarseness from constant requests to ‘Read it again!’" A Publishers Weekly contributor praised the droll illustrations, noting that young readers will be "drawn in once again by Meddaugh's witty and unaffected cartooning." The critics were not the only ones to award the loquacious pit bull best in show: the first two "Martha" books won their author numerous industry honors.
Admittedly feeling "frankly amazed and puzzled at the success of the "Martha books," Meddaugh added: "You just never know what is going to work with the readers. I know what works for me, what makes me laugh. But it's not always what makes others laugh. Ultimately what I am striving for is to have kids get involved with the images I create, to find some meaning and, yes, humor in them. And that's a pretty tall order in today's world with all the competing images we have around us all the time. Doing picture books is a sort of funny field. In one way it's hard to take it seriously, but on the other hand it is serious. It's important to get kids reading. If they laugh at Martha and it helps them to read, fine. I've done my job. But my work is also a great self-indulgence. Here I am drawing pictures of dogs and making up stories just like I did when I was a kid."
Although the real Martha passed on to doggie heaven in 1996, Meddaugh has continued to keep her beloved pet alive through a continuous stream of "Martha" stories, among them Martha Blah Blah, Martha Walks the Dog, Perfectly Martha, and Martha and Skits. In Martha Blah Blah, the pup's vocabulary suffers when the soup manufacturer introduces a cost-cutting measure that involves shortening the noodle alphabet. Fortunately, the curious pooch does some scouting around and sets the soup world to rights again in a book that Booklist contributor Ilene Cooper described as "marked by sly humor." Martha Blah Blah "is a superb blend of humor, pathos, and Martha's brave panache," Roger Sutton noted in his Horn Book review of the third "Martha" book.
In Martha and Skits Meddaugh introduces another family member: a rambunctious puppy named Skits. Trying to follow in Martha's pawprints proves impossible for the newcomer when a dose of alphabet soup yields no chatter. However, Skits has other skills, among them an ability to chew everything in sight and a talent for catching things in flight. The actions of a dishonest dog-trainer prompt the determined pit bull to turn detective in Perfectly Martha, and foil the efforts of Otis Weaselgraft from implanting mind-control devices in the brains of his innocent students. According to a Publishers Weekly reviewer, while Perfectly Martha "amounts to a mad scientist yarn," Meddaugh's "discerning cartoons carry the day," and School Library Journal contributor Carol Schene noted that the canine's sixth "laugh-out-loud escapade will please budding sci-fi fans as well as Martha's many admirers." Calling Meddaugh's illustrations "loving and playful," Laura Scott added in the same publication that Martha and Skits contains "several laugh-out-loud moments," while a Publishers Weekly critic noted that Meddaugh's "fitting addition to Martha's family acknowledges time's passage, invigorating both her canine heroine and her series."
According to Dunleavy, in books such as Harry on the Rocks and The Witch's Walking Stick Meddaugh makes a transition of sorts in her career, by adopting a "fo-
cused, Zen-like quality" in her stories and moving away from "the hectic goings-on of some of her other books." In Harry on the Rocks a dog becomes stranded on a deserted island; deserted, that is except for a scrubby tree and a large orange-ish egg. When the hungry castaway tries to cook the egg, it hatches instead, and Harry soon finds that his island companion is a young fire-breathing dragon. Although the hound is at first frightened of his new companion, the dragon views Harry in a far different light, and reveals his love and loyalty by aiding the dog's rescue. Again drawing critical comparisons to the work of Steig, Harry on the Rocks was praised by a Publishers Weekly reviewer, who wrote that "Meddaugh's delivery is as droll as ever, and her tale stays on track right through to the clever twist at the end."
Just Teenie is the story of a very small girl named Justine whose frustration over the fact that her world is too large wins her some unusual help from the illustrious carnival fortune-teller Madame Flora. In the book Meddaugh spins what a Publishers Weekly contributor praised as a "fanciful" tale in which an overgrown plant becomes the perfect solution for the story's "resourceful heroine." The picture book prompted a Kirkus Reviews writer to note of Meddaugh that her work is "wonderfully artless: In her hands, a talking dog or a magical walking stick or a girl the size of a cat are all quite natural." In School Library Journal, Susan E. Murray called Just Teenie "a tender story of growth in more ways than one," while the brightly colored "artwork is classic Meddaugh."
With a plot echoing the traditional Cinderella story, The Witch's Walking Stick introduces Margaret, a young or- phan who shoulders the brunt of the work around the family home while her older siblings do little but taunt her. Hoping to escape her plight, Margaret sneaks off into the woods, where she meets a friendly dog carrying a sturdy stick in its mouth. It turns out that the stick is actually the property of a troublesome witch and, as Margaret discovers, it carries a vestige of the troublesome, spell-making magic of its owner. As the story plays out to its characteristic happy ending, Margaret channels enough positive magic from the stick to give her siblings a suitable comeuppance, foil the witch's attempts at wreaking further damage, and gain a new tail-wagging best friend. Reviewing the work in Horn Book, Roger Sutton wrote that The Witch's Walking Stick "has just the right amount of complication, and the narrative voice is colloquial and matter-of-fact." Meddaugh's "droll original fairy tale treats timeless themes of injustice and comeuppance," Jennifer Mattson maintained in her Booklist review. Calling the storyline "wacky," a Kirkus Reviews writer added that "Meddaugh's droll, economical prose is matched to perfection by her wonderfully expository artwork," while in School Library Journal Marge Loch-Wouters wrote that the author/ illustrator's "dry, quirky tale of the ‘little guy’ triumphing over adversity will have children smiling and cheering." "Ideas are everywhere," Meddaugh has explained regarding her search for picture-book ideas. "You relax and wait for them; they can't be forced." Picture-book illustrating continues to be "something I love to do," she added. "And that's important. With all the commercialization of children's books that is happening now— the blockbuster bestseller mentality that is taking over children's publishing just as it has the adult market— it's important to remember that the best children's books are the ones that are timeless. They are the ones created by people who are in it not so much for the money, but because they just love doing picture books."
Biographical and Critical Sources
Booklist, January 15, 1995, review of Martha Calling, p. 863; September 1, 1995, Stephanie Zvirin, review of Hog-Eye, p. 88; September 15, 1996, Ilene Cooper, review of Martha Blah Blah, p. 248; January 1, 1999, review of Five Little Piggies, p. 785; November 1, 1999, Ilene Cooper, review of The Best Place, p. 540; June 1, 2000, Ilene Cooper, review of Martha and Skits, p. 1910; May 1, 2002, Gillian Engberg, review of Lulu's Hat, p. 1527; February 15, 2003, Ilene Cooper, review of Harry on the Rocks, p. 1075; March 15, 2004, Gillian Engberg, review of Perfectly Martha, p. 1310; July, 2005, Jennifer Mattson, review of The Witch's Walking Stick p. 1930; April 15, 2006, Gillian Engberg, review of Just Teenie, p. 53.
Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books, June, 1982, p. 192; March, 1990, Zena Sutherland, review of Tree of Birds, p. 170; September, 1991, p. 16; September, 1994, Deborah Stevenson, review of Martha Calling, p. 19; November, 2000, review of Martha and Skits, p. 112; May, 2002, review of Lulu's Hat, p. 333; June, 2003, review of Harry on the Rocks, p. 412.
Five Owls, November-December, 1992, Mary Lou Burket, review of Martha Speaks, p. 33.
Horn Book, September-October, 1990, Mary M. Burns, review of Tree of Birds, p. 595; November, 1996, Roger Sutton, review of Martha Blah Blah, p. 727; September, 1997, Ann A. Flowers, review of Cinderella's Rat, p. 560; November, 1998, Ann A. Flowers, review of Martha Walks the Dog, p. 716; September-October, 2005, Roger Sutton, review of The Witch's Walking Stick, p. 565.
Kirkus Reviews, October 1, 1978, p. 1070; March 15, 1980, p. 361; August 15, 1991, review of The Witches' Supermarket, p. 1091; July 15, 1997, review of Cinderella's Rat, p. 1113; April 15, 2003, review of Harry on the Rocks, p. 609; February 15, 2004, review of Perfectly Martha, p. 182; July 15, 2005, review of The Witch's Walking Stick, p. 793; April 1, 2006, review of Just Teenie, p. 352.
New York Times Book Review, November 8, 1992, Benjamin Cheever, "What the Dog Said," p. 32; April 21, 2002, review of Lulu's Hat, p. 24; December 4, 2005, M.P. Dunleavey, review of The Witch's Walking Stick, p. 76.
Parents' Choice, Volume 18, no. 4, 1994, review of Martha Calling.
Publishers Weekly, July 31, 1978, review of Too Short Fred, p. 98; February 22, 1980, review of Maude and Claude Go Abroad, p. 108; February 20, 1981, review of Beast, p. 94; March 5, 1982, review of Too Many Monsters, p. 70; March 16, 1990, review of Tree of Birds, p. 69; August 15, 1994, review of Martha Calling, p. 95; July 6, 1998, review of Martha Walks the Dog, p. 60; November 2, 1998, review of Hog-Eye, p. 86; October 11, 1999, review of The Best Place, p. 75; April 10, 2000, review of Five Little Piggies, p. 101; August 7, 2000, review of Martha and Skits, p. 94; September 25, 2000, Nathalie op de Beeck, "A Talk with Susan Meddaugh," p. 39; February 11, 2002, review of Lulu's Hat, p. 187; February 10, 2003, review of Harry on the Rocks, p. 185; January 19, 2004, review of Perfectly Martha, p. 75; June 20, 2005, review of The Witch's Walking Stick, p. 76; February 20, 2006, review of Just Teenie, p. 155.
School Library Journal, May, 1981, review of Beast, p. 58; April, 1982, review of Two Many Monsters, pp. 59-60; November, 1991, Liza Bliss, review of The Witches' Supermarket, p. 103; September, 1999, Tom S. Hurlburt, review of The Best Place, p. 197; August, 2000, Laura Scott, review of Martha and Skits, p. 159; May, 2002, Marge Loch-Wouters, review of Lulu's Hat, p. 123; May, 2003, Lauralyn Persson, review of Harry on the Rocks, p. 126; April, 2004, Carol Schene, review of Perfectly Martha, p. 119; September, 2005, Marge Loch-Wouters, review of The Witch's Walking Stick, p. 177; June, 2006, Susan E. Murray, review of Just Teenie, p. 122.
Tribune Books (Chicago, IL), November 12, 1995, Mary Harris Veeder, review of Hog-Eye, p. 6; January 12, 1997, Mary Harris Veeder, review of Martha Blah Blah, p. 5; September, 1999, Tom S. Hurlburt, review of The Best Place, p. 197; April 20, 2003, review of Harry on the Rocks, p. 5.
Washington Post Book World, May 8, 1994, Michael J. Rosen, review of Martha Speaks, p. 18; December, 1994, Linda Perkins, review of Martha Calling, p. 32.
California Kids Web site,http://www.californiakidsweb.com/ (September, 2004), Patricia M. Newman, "Who Wrote That? Featuring Susan Meddaugh."