Robert McClosky’s daughter to discuss her book about her father

Posted Sept. 12, 2011, at 1:23 p.m.

CAMDEN, Maine — Jane McCloskey will give an illustrated talk on her father, Robert McCloskey, at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 20, at Camden Public Library.

Robert McCloskey is one of the most beloved American children’s authors of all time. His eight books, including “Make Way for Ducklings,” “One Morning in Maine,” “Time of Wonder” and “Burt Dow Deep-Water Man” are 20th century icons, winning two Caldecott Medals and two Caldecott Honors for Books. Yet little is known of McCloskey’s life. As his younger daughter Jane describes in “Robert McCloskey: A Private Life in Words and Pictures,” a memoir of Bob and his family, he was a shy, quiet man, reluctant to talk about himself. His work spoke for him.

He and the family did, indeed, live on the Maine island that figures so largely in many of his books. But they also lived in New York state, in St. Thomas, Virgin Islands, and among the ex-patriate artistic set in Taxco, Mexico, where his children watched him have a nervous breakdown that affected the rest of his life.

“Robert McCloskey: A Private Life in Words and Pictures” has more than 50 examples of McCloskey’s art rarely seen outside the family and nearly 50 more of his drawings and paintings from his books.

Bob McCloskey really did write and paint what he knew — from his Midwestern childhood to island life in Maine.

Jane McCloskey has been many things, including a house painter, Christmas wreath maker, environmentalist and writer. She lives in a house she built herself on Deer Isle, near the island where she grew up. She is McCloskey’s younger daughter and appears in many of his books.

For more information about the book talk, call Camden Public Library at 236-3440.

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