Thursday, December 28, 2017

Book cover: "Danny Dunn and the Anti-Gravity Paint"

Here's a book that I'm sure some of you remember fondly from your childhood...

  • Title: Danny Dunn and the Anti-Gravity Paint
  • Authors: Jay Williams (1914-1978) & Raymond Abrashkin (1911-1960)
  • Illustrator: Ezra Jack Keats (1916-1983)
  • Series: This is the first book in the 15-volume Danny Dunn series. My favorite book title: Danny Dunn and the Smallifying Machine.
  • Dust jacket blurb: "When Danny Dunn tips over the mysterious jar of glistening liquid, he has no way of knowing that he will involve himself, his friend Joe, and Professor Bullfinch in a wild flight between planets. But anything can happen when Danny is around — and practically does."
  • Publisher: Whittlesey House (McGraw-Hill Book Company)
  • Edition: Weekly Reader Children's Book Club edition published in 1957
  • Price: None listed
  • Pages: 154
  • Format: Hardcover
  • First sentences: Space Captain Daniel Dunn stood on the bridge of the Revenge with his eyes on the viewer screens. He could see the fiery trails that were the rocket ships from Jupiter.
  • Last sentences: Then he began to giggle too. And soon he was laughing louder than any of the others.
  • Random sentence from middle: Holy leaping creepers!
  • Amazon rating: 4.8 stars out of 5.0.
  • Goodreads rating: 3.88 stars out of 5.0
  • Goodreads review: From Christie Skipper Ritchotte in 2010: "I'm not sure what to rate this; haven't read it since I was a kid, but I can say that while Vonnegut, Burroughs, Tolkien, Bradbury, Golding, and many others all made me wish I could be one of those writer-people, this particular Danny Dunn book made me actually pick up a pen and do it in the 4th grade. I <3 Danny Dunn."

The Creators
The back of the dust jacket is entirely devoted to photos (shown above) and many tiny words about the co-authors and the illustrator. Here are some excerpts from those mini biographies...
  • JAY WILLIAMS is the author of five juveniles including THE ROMAN MOON MYSTERY which won a Boys' Club of America Award in 1949. ... Born in Buffalo, New York, Mr. Williams was educated at the University of Pennsylvania, Columbia University, and the Art Students League.
  • RAYMOND ABRASHKIN is the author and co-producer of the very popular and successful "Little Fugitive" which was named Best American Film at the 1954 Venice Film Festival. ... In addition to over fifty children's records, he has written the librettos for four children's operas.
  • EZRA JACK KEATS has illustrated a number of books including Jay Williams' recent A CHANGE OF CLIMATE. ... Besides spending a year in Paris, his on-the-spot research for book illustrations has taken him to many different locations, including Cuba and Scotland.

1 comment: