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Wednesday, February 01, 2012

Digging for Gold at the Library: Howard Pease

(by Gina Bardi, Reference Librarian)

In a research library such as ours, fiction books are sometimes overlooked. Of course fiction is often mined for academic and research purposes (a quick check of WorldCat shows over 1,000 books about Moby Dick alone--that's a whole lotta whale), but let's not forget the pleasure of simply just reading for readings sake a good rousing tale of mystery or adventure. One of the most beloved fiction authors in our library is Howard Pease. Anyone who reads a Howard Pease book usually ends up reading two, then three and well, so on and so forth. I like to call it "The Policy of Apeasment", but only quietly to myself lest I face the moans of a bad pun. Pease wrote his books mainly for a juvenile audience, but his sense of narrative and powers of description appeal to adults as well. Titles such as Jinx Ship, The Tattooed Man, and the Ship Without a Crew speak to his ability to pull a reader into the story. Who wouldn't want to read a book entitled Shipwreck; the strange adventures of Renny Mitchum, mess boy of the trading schooner "Samarang."


Cover of The Tattooed Man

Cover of book Heart of Danger

Our library has over 20 Howard Pease books, including one in Danish, so there is enough here to keep you going for a while. Howard Pease fan extraordinaire Dan Glines has compiled a list of all of Pease's book with descriptions of the plots to make it easier to pick one to start, Books by author Howard Pease reviewed, which is available in the Library, as is the thesis A study of the creative genesis of the twenty-two published children's novels by Howard Pease.

Start your descent into Peasemania today!

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