April 23, 2021

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Beverly Cleary, the beloved and award-winning author of dozens of children’s books, died Thursday in Carmel, California, her publisher HarperCollins announced Friday. Cleary was 104. No cause of death was given. While Cleary became a prolific author, she didn’t actually starting writing books until her 30s. The Portland, Oregon, native’s stories revolved around, in her own words, “just ordinary kids playing in the neighborhood.” Subsequently, The Oregonian notes, Cleary “didn’t shy away from subjects that were once considered too touchy for children’s books,” and her writing dealt with issues like parental job loss, divorce, and loneliness. Her best-known characters were perhaps sisters Ramona and Beezus Quimby and their neighbor, Henry Huggins, all of whom appeared in multiple books. [The Oregonian, The Associated Press]

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