Illinois State Library

Illinois Center for the Book


Individual Author Record

General Information

Name:  Karen Cushman  

Pen Name: None

Genre:

Born: October 4, 1941 Chicago, Illinois

Sites:

E-Mail:


Illinois Connection

Cushman was born in Chicago and lived there until she was ten years old.

Biographical and Professional Information

Karen Cushman writes historical fiction, novels for children and young adults. She received an M.A. in human behavior and one in museum studies. She currently resides on Vashon Island west of Seattle, Washington.


Published Works Expand for more information


Titles At Your Library

Catherine Called Birdy
ISBN: 0064405842

Trophy Press. 1995

Catherine, a spirited and inquisitive young woman of good family, narrates in diary form the story of her fourteenth year--the year 1290. A Newbery Honor Book.

The Midwife's Apprentice
ISBN: 006440630X

HarperCollins. 1996

The Midwife's Apprentice

The Ballad of Lucy Whipple
ISBN: 0613073045

Turtleback Books: A Division of Sanval. 1998

In 1849 a twelve-year-old girl who calls herself Lucy is distraught when her mother moves the family from Massachusetts to a small California mining town. There Lucy helps run a boarding house and looks for comfort in books while trying to find a way to return "home."

Matilda Bone
ISBN: 0440418224

Yearling. 2002

Matilda Bone

Rodzina
ISBN: 044041993X

Yearling. 2005

In 1881, 12-year-old Rodzina Clara Jadwiga Anastazya Brodski wishes she didn’t have to board the orphan train in Chicago. But she has no home, no family, and no choice. Rodzina doesn’t believe the orphans are on their way out West to be adopted by good families. She’s sure they will become slaves to strangers. Anyway, who would ever adopt a large, tough, stubborn girl of Polish origin? As the train heads west, all Rodzina has is a small suitcase and her family memories from the past. Will Rodzina ever step off the train to find the family that deep in her heart she’s searching for?

The Loud Silence of Francine Green
ISBN: 0375841172

Laurel Leaf. 2008

FRANCINE GREEN’S FATHER says it’s best not to speak up or get involved. But then she meets the outspoken Sophie Bowman, a newcomer to All Saints School for Girls. The nuns dislike her friendship with Sophie, who protests injustice in and out of school. But their friendship leads Francine to thinking outside the box of her trouble-free life.

Alchemy and Meggy Swann
ISBN: 0547577125

HMH Books for Young Readers. 2011

Fans of Karen Cushman's witty, satisfying novels will welcome Meggy Swann,

newly come to London with her only friend, a goose named Louise. Meggy's mother was glad to be rid of her

her father, who sent for her, doesn't want her after all. Meggy is appalled by London,dirty and noisy, full of rogues and thieves, and difficult to get around in—not that getting around is ever easy for someone

who walks with the help of two sticks.Just as her alchemist father pursues his Great Work of transforming base metal into gold, Meggy finds herself pursuing her own transformation. Earthy and colorful, Elizabethan London has its dark side, but it also has gifts in store for Meggy Swann.

Will Sparrow's Road
ISBN: 0544336321

HMH Books for Young Readers. 2014

In his thirteenth year, Will Sparrow, liar and thief, becomes a runaway. On the road, he encounters a series of con artists—a pickpocket, a tooth puller, a pig trainer, a conjurer—and learns that others are more adept than he at

lying and thieving. Then he reluctantly joins a traveling troupe of "oddities," including a dwarf and

a cat-faced girl, holding himself apart from the "monsters" and resolving to be on guard against further deceptions. At last

Will is

forced to understand that appearances are misleading and that

he has been his own worst deceiver. The rowdy world of market fairs in Elizabethan England is the colorful backdrop for Newbery medalist Cushman's

new

comic masterpiece.

Grayling's Song
ISBN: 0544301803

Clarion Books. 2016

“Like all Karen Cushman's gorgeous novels,

Grayling’s Song

delves into the past to let us know what we must ask of our future.” —Lena Dunham

It’s time for Grayling to be a hero. Her mother, a “wise woman”—a sort of witch—has been turned into a tree by evil forces. Tangles and toadstools! Lacking confidence after years of being called “Feeble Wits” by her mother, Grayling heads off dubiously into the wilds in search of help, where she finds a weather witch, an aromatic enchantress, a cheese soothsayer, a slyly foolish apprentice, and a shape-shifting mouse named Pook!

A fast-paced and funny coming-of-age odyssey from a Newbery medalist.


Awards

-- Catherine, Called Birdy

Newbery Honor Book

Best Book for Young Adults, ALA

Notable Book for Children, ALA

Recommended Book for Reluctant Young Adult Readers, ALA

Editors' Choice, Booklist

Golden Kite Award

Horn Book Fanfare Selection

Teachers' Choice, IRA

Best Books of the Year, School Library Journal

"Pick of the Lists," American Bookseller

South Carolina Book Award

100 Titles for Reading and Sharing, New York Public Library

Reading Magic Awards, Parenting Magazine

Silver Medal, Commonwealth Club

Notable Children's Book in the Language Arts

Commonwealth Club of California Medal

Carl Sandburg Literary Arts Award

Honor List, International Board on Books for Young People

Children's Booksellers Choice Award, ABC

Starred Review, School Library JournalThe Midwife's Apprentice

Newbery Medal

Best Book for Young Adults, ALA

Notable Book for Children, ALA

Booklist Editors' Choice

Horn Book Fanfare Selection

Best Books of the Year, School Library Journal

Best Book for Young Adults, ALA

Book of Distinction, Hungry Mind

Notable Children's Book in the Language Arts

Not Just For Children Anymore! Selection, CBC

Reading Magic Awards, Parenting Magazine

Young Readers Choice Award Short List, Pacific Northwest Library Association

Parents' Choice Gold Award

"Pick of the Lists," American Bookseller

100 Titles for Reading and Sharing, New York Public Library

Children's Booksellers Choice Award, ABC

Books for the Teen Age List, New York Public Library

Starred Review, Booklist

Starred Review, School Library JournalThe Ballad of Lucy Whipple

Editors' Choice, Booklist

Best Books of the Year, School Library Journal

100 Titles for Reading and Sharing, New York Public Library

Lasting Connections Selection, Booklinks

Notable Children's Trade Book in the Field of Social Studies

Notable Children's Book in the Language Arts

Teachers' Choice, IRA

"Pick of the Lists," American Bookseller

Lone Star Reading List Selection, Texas

John and Patricia Beatty Award

Children's Booksellers Choice Award, ABC

Starred Review, School Library JournalMaltida Bone

"Pick of the Lists," American Bookseller

100 Titles for Reading and Sharing, New York Public Library

Best Books of the Year, School Library Journal

Parents' Choice Silver Award

Notable Children's Trade Book in the Field of Social Studies

Best Children's Books of the Year, Bank Street

Young Readers’ Master List, Arizona

Student Book Award Master List, Maine Rodzina

Lasting Connections Selection, Booklinks

Parents' Choice Gold Award

Editor's Choice, Booklist

Best Books of the Year, Child Magazine

Best Books, Children's Book of the Month Club

ALA/Amelia Bloomer Project List

William Allen White Master List, Kansas

Willa Literary Award, New Mexico

Keystone to Reading Master List, Pennsylvania

Young Reader’s Choice Award Master List, Pennsylvania

State Book Award, Washington

Indian Paintbrush Children’s Book Award Master List, Wyoming

Starred Review, School Library Journal

Starred Review, BooklistThe Loud Silence of Francine Green

Parents' Choice Silver Award

100 Titles for Reading and Sharing, New York Public Library

Children's Booksellers Choice Award, ABC

CCBC Choices

Books for the Teen Age, New York Public Library

State Reading Circle Recommendation, Kansas

Starred Review, School Library Journal

Starred Review, BooklistAlchemy and Meggy Swann

Starred Review, Booklist

Starred Review, Kirkus

Starred Review, School Library JournalWill Sparrow's Road

Starred Review, Publishers WeeklyGrayling's Song

Starred Review, Kirkus