Who Was Dr. Seuss?
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Ted Geisel loved to doodle from the time he was a kid. He had an offbeat, fun-loving personality. He often threw dinner parties where guests wore outrageous hats! And he donned quirky hats when thinking up ideas for books-?like his classic The Cat in the Hat. This biography, with black-and-white illustrations throughout, brings an amazingly gifted author/illustrator to life.
Ted’s mother died at the age of fifty-two. Her early death was a shock to Ted. But at least she had lived long enough to see his first big success. Flit made Ted financially secure for life, but there was one problem: He didn’t want to spend all his time drawing Flit ads. But his contract wouldn’t let him do most other kinds of work. Years later he wrote, “I would like to say I went into children’s book work because of my great understanding of children.” But it wasn’t really true. Actually,
German fashion: “Zoyce.” But most of his readers said “Soose.” Ted liked that this rhymed with Mother Goose, so he started saying “Soose,” too. Random House, a much bigger publisher than Vanguard, became interested in Dr. Seuss. The head of Random House, Bennett Cerf, promised to publish anything Ted wrote. How could he resist? He was sad to leave his friends at Vanguard. But he loved Random House. They stayed his publisher for the rest of his life. Over the years, he became close friends with
spent hours sitting beside her in the hospital. When she came home, Ted rigged up mirrors so Helen could watch their dog playing outside. Ted had relied on Helen for everything. She helped him with all his books and ran his life for him. Without her, he didn’t even know how to balance a checkbook. Helen amazed her doctors by recovering almost completely. By May 1955, she was able to travel back to Dartmouth with Ted to see him get an honorary doctorate. Years ago, he had disappointed his
with Ted’s niece, Peggy. Ted had loved playing with Peggy when she was a baby. Even after he and Marnie were not speaking, he kept in touch with Peggy. In her twenties, Peggy moved out to California. She lived in the Geisel’s tower for a while. She even got married there. Her son, another Ted, named Teddy, was like a grandson to the Geisels. He was quiet and gentle like Ted, and he wanted to be an artist. Teddy was one of the few people Ted would allow into the studio while he was working.
taken off of library shelves. Ted had worked hard to convince the United States to fight in World War II. How could he write a book against war? Audrey comforted him by telling him, “You’re not just writing books for children, you’re writing for humanity.” The book’s success proved her point. It was the first children’s book ever to spend six months on the adult best seller list of the New York Times Book Review. Ted liked to joke that he was responsible for the end of the Cold War. In 1990, a