Walter Dean Myers, pre-eminent author of teen fiction and verse, refines the image of black characters that are frequently trivialized or vilified in juvenile literature, advertising, television and film. From his saga The Glory Field to his vel The Young Landlords , Myers's can surveys the complex realm of the teen years as colliding settings in home, school, and the street. This volume introduces readers to both the writer and his work, with an emphasis on the characters, dates, events, motifs and themes from the book. Myer's one hundred one A-to-Z entries offer concise, analytical discussion on all topics and include generous citations from primary and secondary sources. Each entry concludes with a selected bibliography on such subjects as segregation, Malcolm X, urbanism, writing, metafiction, drugs and alcohol, slavery, and the Vietnam War. Appendices include a timeline of historical events in Myer's writings and forty topics for group or individual projects, oral analysis, background material and theme development. A map of Harlem (where many of the stories are set), genealogical diagrams for characters, and an author chrology are also included.
A former teacher of English and Latin to high school and university students, Mary Ellen Snodgrass has been an award-winning textbook and reference book author for 35 years. She lives in Hickory, North Carolina.