I’ve just rediscovered an author that I had read in my childhood, and who I now will read with greater enjoyment, I’m sure, as an adult. His name is Leonard Wibberley, and he is the author of the Mouse That Roared series of books, as well as more than a hundred other books of fiction and non-fiction.
I don’t know why, but I had a sudden hankering to read The Mouse That Roared, and so looked up Wibberley on Amazon. I had no idea he’d written so prolifically, nor about so many different subjects. Currently on my reading list are the Mouse books, about the Duchy of Grand Fenwick, a small island nation that takes on the superpowers of the world, thinking that if they are defeated, the victors will take care of them, saving them from bankruptcy and ruin. As fate would have it, however, the Duchy continues to vanquish their opponents, and are stuck trying to figure out what to do next. I remember the humor of the books, and I suspect I’ll get more of the irony reading them now.
Also on my to-read list are several of his other books, among them The Quest for Excalibur, The Testament of Theophilus, The Trouble with The Irish (or the English, Depending on Your Point of View), and Ah, Julian! A Memory of Julian Brodetsky.
Wibberley also wrote numerous novels for juveniles, which I will also read, since that’s one genre in which I’m plan to write. Among my favorite “juvenile fiction” novels are April Morning, Johnny Tremain, and the Wrinkle in Time books (or anything by Madeleine L’Engle), and anything by Anthony Horowitz.
Given all the academic books I’ve been editing lately (see the Editing tab of my website: http://www.annaubrey.com), I am eagerly anticipating the time to reread many of these books, and find new ones along the way.
If you have some favorite juvenile fiction books, I’d love to hear your suggestions.
5 thoughts on “Leonard Wibberley”
Alison Utteley’s A Traveler in Time (1939) was a big favorite of mine early in HS. I re-read Anne McCaffrey’s Harper Hall Trilogy almost every summer too, but I think I found that in my 20’s. Some of the newer J fic is just fabulous – try Susan Patron’s Lucky series for amazing kid language/presence. Or Nina Kiriki Hoffman’s work for Teen/Adult cross-over fantasy – her ideas are riviting. Try a Fistful of Sky to start to see if you like how weird it is. And Margaret Petersen Haddix’s books are thrillers without violence and sex – try Double Identity to see if you like the “taste” of her work. The new Missing Series (starts with Found) is good too. I read ALOT in the J and Teen fic these days!
Great to read your blog and “see” you online! (Lisa) Rose Momsen
Hi, Rose! Great to see your comment. I haven’t read any of these, but will add them to my list. Now I wish I could just find the hours to do all of the reading I want to do, and not just editing reading. Thanks for the response!
This book, of course, was the inspiration for my “Independent Kingdom of Chapoquoit” that I wanted to set up on the Cleveland Ledge Lighthouse in 2001. We would declare ourselves independent, declare war on the US, get foreign aid, send a dance troupe to the Kennedy Center, and we would all participate on the Olympics team. Ah, well. That’s why fiction was invented.
But, of course, you had something Wibberley never had…the Frog. What havoc he would have wrought!