Happy 100th, Fern G. Brown! ("Daisy and the Girl Scouts: The Story of Juliette Gordon Low," 1993)

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Dec 23, 2018, 2:37:14 PM12/23/18
According to more than one source, she lives in Riverwoods, Illinois.

She wrote at least five horse novels in the 1970s and 1980s, plus 15 non-fiction books - including biographies.

Not to be confused with the much younger writer of coloring books - I think.

"Contributor of more than fifty articles and stories to periodicals, including American Girl, Outdoor World, Midwest, Modern Maturity, Discovery, Modern Veterinary Practice, and Teen Time. Contributing editor of American Horseman, 1977."

"Carl Sandburg Award for best children's book of 1981-82, Chicago Public Library Friends, for Behind the Scenes at the Horse Hospital; recommended book for the 'reluctant young adult reader.' "

(book covers)

(8 synopses)

(more synopses)

(reader reviews)


(With Andree V. Grabe) When Grandpa Wore Knickers (nonfiction), Albert Whitman, 1966.

Hard Luck Horse (fiction), Albert Whitman, 1975.
Racing against the Odds: Jockey Robyn Smith (biography), Raintree, 1976.
Scooby Doo and the Headless Horseman (picture book), Rand McNally, 1976.
Scooby Doo and the Counterfeit Money (picture book), Rand McNally, 1976.
Scooby Doo and the Santa Claus Mystery (picture book), Rand McNally, 1977.
Clue Club and the Case of the Missing Race Horse (picture book), Rand McNally, 1977.
Dynomutt and the Pie in the Sky Caper (picture book), Rand McNally, 1977.
Bugs Bunny, Pioneer (picture book), Western Publishing, 1977.
You're Somebody Special on a Horse (fiction), Albert Whitman, 1977.
Jockey, or Else! (fiction), Albert Whitman, 1978.

The Great Money Machine (nonfiction), Messner, 1981.
Behind the Scenes at the Horse Hospital (nonfiction), Albert Whitman, 1981.
Valentine's Day (nonfiction), F. Watts, 1983.
Etiquette (nonfiction), F. Watts, 1985.
Amelia Earhart Takes Off (biography), Albert Whitman, 1985.
Horses and Foals (nonfiction), F. Watts, 1985.
Our Love (fiction), Fawcett, 1986.
Hereditary Diseases (nonfiction), F. Watts, 1987.
Rodeo Love (fiction), Fawcett, 1988.
Baby Sitter on Horseback (fiction), Fawcett, 1988.
Teen Guide to Childbirth (nonfiction), F. Watts, 1989.
Franklin Pierce, 14th President (biography), Garrett Educational Publishing, 1989.
Teen Guide to Caring for Your Unborn Baby (nonfiction), F. Watts, 1989.

James Garfield, 20th President (biography), Garrett Educational Publishing, 1990.
Owls (nonfiction), F. Watts, 1991.
Special Olympics (nonfiction), F. Watts, 1992.
Daisy and the Girl Scouts: The Story of Juliette Gordon Low, Albert Whitman, 1993.
American Indian Science: A New Look at Old Cultures, Twenty-First Century Books (New York), 1997.



Jun 7, 2019, 10:49:34 AM6/7/19
From Jan. 2019:


Second half:

...Brown works out at a health club, socializes with friends and neighbors, and reads voraciously, but admits she feels differently at 100. She passed the vision test and was ready to take the road exam to renew her driver’s license last month, but elected not to.

“Are you kidding? Can I ice skate? I can’t do everything I used to do, but I do as much as I can,” Brown said.

She began learning chess because her weekend caretaker was a champion from Romania.

“She knows how to teach, Brown said. “It’s not like checkers where you try to take as many pieces as you can. You have to check that king. The queen is the most important piece because she can do the most things.”

Brown grew up in Chicago’s Albany Park neighborhood, earned an undergraduate degree from Chicago Teachers College and a master’s in education from Northwestern University. She married Leonard J. Brown, who died in 2005 of Alzheimer’s disease. He introduced her to horseback riding — on their first date.

She said she was terrified, “kicking and screaming,” fell off the horse and was injured, but eventually came to love it. The couple moved to Riverwoods in 1969 so they could keep horses. . She continued to ride until she was near 80.

When she turned 40, Brown became a published writer. Writing magazine articles at first, she eventually turned to books geared to sixth- through eighth-graders. Her work ranged from Bugs Bunny books to a biography of Amelia Earhart. .

Initially writing with a pen and pad, Brown said she was thrilled to move to a manual typewriter, then an electric typewriter, on to a word processor and to a computer. She could not do research using Google at first.

“You did it on your feet,” Brown said. “For the Amelia Earhart book, I went to Palwaukee (now Chicago Executive) Airport and talked to a man who knew her.”

At 85, Brown said she stopped writing.

“Now I wanted to get out,” she said. “I had been at home by myself at my computer a long time.”

She also plays the piano, though.less frequently now, and while she says she was not that good, Barnett tells a different story.

“I used to play the piano under duress,” Barnett said. “My mom would be in the kitchen yelling F sharp, B flat. She caught all the mistakes. I was able to do an hour of practicing in 45 minutes.”

Regularly calling friends and family, Brown does something for somebody every day. She goes to the gym for her body and takes care of her mind with more than chess.

“I do a crossword puzzle every day from the (Chicago) Sun-Times,” she said. “I do the one in the Deerfield Review and occasionally from the (Chicago) Tribune.”



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