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>Phone Call to the Past

>Pursuant to my recent post about sequels, I see from A Chair, A Fireplace and a Tea Cozy that not only are Ellen Emerson White’s old books about The President’s Daughter being republished, she’s rewriting them to bring them in line with the most recent book, Long May She Reign, which is set in the present day but picks up the action from the end of the last book, Long Live the Queen.

Phew. If only they could do this with the old Magic Attic books, which apparently invite readers to join a fan club by calling an 800 number which time and fate have transformed into a phone sex line. And I wonder what’s happened to 537-3331, Amy’s phone number in I Am the Cheese. If you figured out the area code you could find yourself talking to “Amy’s father,” aka Robert Cormier. Or so I was told.

Roger Sutton About Roger Sutton

Roger Sutton has been the editor in chief of The Horn Book, Inc, since 1996. He was previously editor of The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books and a children's and young adult librarian. He received his M.A. in library science from the University of Chicago in 1982 and a B.A. from Pitzer College in 1978. Follow him on Twitter: @RogerReads.



  1. >this works for ellen emerson white because the initial books have been OP for ages and they’re pretty much impossible to find. i wonder what would have happened had this not been the case.

    and also: hooray! great books.

  2. >The Ellen Emerson White series was one of my all-time favorites circa 8th grade, all but forgotten until the new book showed up in the office. Having the original trilogy about a million times, I was both amused and bemused at the time gap, a sequel challenge that had never before occured to me. I look forward to the books being available again, but feel a twinge of regret that all the fabulous little 80s culture references will (presumably) no longer be there to puzzle and inspire.

    Now here’s hoping someone resurrects her Vietnam War series, which I always wanted to check out but have never (aside from The Road Home) been able to get my hands on.


    P.S. As far as the phone number: ick.

  3. Alkelda the Gleeful says:

    >The phone number in I Am The Cheese really was Robert Cormier’s phone number. Aside from the few times someone called up in the middle of the night and made Cormer’s wife cranky (with good reason!), Cormier seemed to be fine with talking to fans on the phone. At least, this is what he conveyed in a biographic piece I read some years back.

  4. >I loved the EEW series in Jr. High — I still have a battered copy of the last one that I picked up at our Friends of the Library booksale when they pitched it for being too shabby to circulate.

    I’d checked on its in-print status through the years every once in awhile, too, so I’m glad to see they’re reprinting.

  5. >Thanks for the link!

    On the changes to the President’s series: it sounds like some things remain (watching Hill Street but on DVD) while others will change (the USSR, for instance; mentions to that are changed.)

    I was chatting at EEW’s publisher at NCTE; basically, if you want to see the Vietnam books republished, email them and let them know. They are aware of this & have gotten some emails, but the more, the better.

    I also found out that the Vietnam books were originally set to be 8, not 4. I’d suspected it was set to be longer, but it’s nice to have it confirmed.

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