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The Singing Creek Where the Willows Grow: The Mystical Nature Diary of Opal Whiteley

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The Singing Creek Where the Willows Grow: The Mystical Nature Diary of Opal Whiteley Cover

ISBN13: 9780140237207
ISBN10: 0140237208
Condition: Standard
All Product Details

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Staff Pick

The nature diaries of Opal Whiteley are amazing for their magical, wide-eyed descriptions of forest and farm life. Raised on a Willamette Valley settlement in the early 20th century, Whiteley claimed to write this diary on scraps of paper at the age of six. Though her claims were disputed both in her lifetime and after, her writing is a unique window into our relationship with the natural world.
Recommended by Sandra G, Powells.com

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Long before environmental consciousness became popular, a young nature writer named Opal Whiteley captured America's heart. Opal's childhood diary, published in 1920, became an immediate bestseller, one of the most talked-about books of its time. Wistful, funny, and wise, it was described by an admirer as "the revelation of the...life of a feminine Peter Pan of the Oregon wilderness — so innocent, so intimate, so haunting, that I should not know where in all literature to look for a counterpart."

But the diary soon fell into disgrace. Condemning it as an adult-writeen hoax, skeptics stirred a scandal that drove the book into obscurity and shattered the frail spirit of its author.

Discovering the diary by chance, bestselling author Benjamin Hoff set out to solve the longstanding mystery of it origin. His biography of Opal that accompanies the diary porvides fascinating proof that the document is indeed authentic — the work of a magically gifted child, America's forgotten interpreter of nature.

Review:

"A double delight: Hoff's understanding biography and the loveliness of the diary itself." The Los Angeles Times

Review:

"One of the great forgotten works of 20th-century American literature." The Washington Post

Review:

"We can rejoice that [Opals'] enchanting diary has at last been republished." Newsday

Review:

"The Singing Creek is truly wonderful — an intriguing reading experience." Fort Worth Star-Telegram

Review:

"A strange, sad tale...has at last been given a happy ending." Chicago Tribune

Synopsis:

Long before environmental consciousness became popular, a young nature writer named Opal Whitely captured America's heart. Opal's childhood diary, published in 1902, became an immediate bestseller, one of the most talked-about books of its time. Wistful, funny, and wise, it was described by an admirer as "the revelation of the ...life of a feminine Peter Pan of the Oregon wilderness—so innocent, so intimate, so haunting, that I should not know where in all literature to look for a counterpart."

But the diary soon fell into disgrace. Condemning it as an adult-written hoax, skeptics stirred a scandal that drove the book into obscurity and shattered the frail spirit of its author.

Discovering the diary by chance, bestselling author Benjamin Hoff set out to solve the longstanding mystery of its origin. His biography of Opal that accompanies the diary provides fascinating proof that the document is indeed authentic—the work of a magically gifted child, America's forgotten interpreter of nature.

Synopsis:

Capturing America's heart in 1920, Opal's childhood diary became an immediate bestseller. Innocent and intimate, this haunting diary reveals the life of a kind of feminine Peter Pan in the Oregon wilderness. Rediscovered and proven authentic by the bestselling author of The Tao of Pooh, it is now accompanied by a biography and afterword. Syndicated radio news features.

About the Author

Opal Whiteley grew up in logging settlements near the town of Cottage Grove, at the southern end of Oregon's Willamette Valley. A child literary prodigy and acclaimed nature teacher, she is the author of The Fairyland Around Us, a self-published nature book for children (1918) and her bestselling childhood diary, The Story of Opal (1920).

Benjamin Hoff grew up in a rural area a few miles from Portland, Oregon—at the opposite end of the valley in which Opal Whiteley wrote her diary. As a child, he, like Opal, preferred to spend his time outdoors, observing animals, insects, and plants. From an early age, he, too, loved to write. He is the author of the bestselling The Tao of Pooh and The Te of Piglet.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 2 comments:

Martha Evans, January 20, 2010 (view all comments by Martha Evans)
This book is one I buy whenever I find it used, as I give them away all the time. It is pure Magic. The innocence of this diary along with the heartfelt story of the life of the girl who grew into a woman will touch your life. It has been a book that offers a very strong case for the belief of faery's, sprites, and things of a metaphysical nature. Even for those who do not "believe", you will get such a wonderful view of nature, through the eyes of a child. Get it for the young women in your life, but read it first yourself!
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(6 of 7 readers found this comment helpful)
njcur, August 6, 2008 (view all comments by njcur)
This is a really wonderful diary of a young girl growing up in a logging town in Oregon in the early 1900s. Her views and insights are remarkable. She has a lovely view of nature and the world around her. It has long been a favorite of mine. I'm sure you will love it.
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(5 of 9 readers found this comment helpful)
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Product Details

ISBN:
9780140237207
Author:
Opal Whiteley and Benjamin Hoff
Publisher:
Penguin Books
Editor:
Hoff, Benjamim
Author:
Whiteley, Opal
Author:
Whitely, Opal
Author:
Hoff, Benjamin
Author:
Hoff, Benjamim
Author:
Beck, Kathrine
Afterword:
Hoff, Benjamin
Location:
New York :
Subject:
General
Subject:
Essays
Subject:
Frontier and pioneer life
Subject:
Occult sciences and parapsychology
Subject:
Authors, American
Subject:
Mysticism
Subject:
Children's writings, American
Subject:
Oregon
Subject:
Oregon Social life and customs.
Subject:
Women
Subject:
Authors, American -- 20th century -- Diaries.
Subject:
Biology-Reference
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Mass Market
Series Volume:
no. A-669
Publication Date:
19950231
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
from 12
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Y
Pages:
384
Dimensions:
7.78 x 5.3 x 1 in 0.63 lb
Age Level:
from 18

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Related Subjects

Arts and Entertainment » Music » Featured Titles
Biography » General
Biography » Women
History and Social Science » Pacific Northwest » History
History and Social Science » Pacific Northwest » Oregon » Books About Oregon
Science and Mathematics » Biology » Reference
Science and Mathematics » Nature Studies » General
Young Adult » Nonfiction » Biographies

The Singing Creek Where the Willows Grow: The Mystical Nature Diary of Opal Whiteley Used Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$9.95 In Stock
Product details 384 pages Penguin Books - English 9780140237207 Reviews:
"Staff Pick" by ,

The nature diaries of Opal Whiteley are amazing for their magical, wide-eyed descriptions of forest and farm life. Raised on a Willamette Valley settlement in the early 20th century, Whiteley claimed to write this diary on scraps of paper at the age of six. Though her claims were disputed both in her lifetime and after, her writing is a unique window into our relationship with the natural world.

"Review" by , "A double delight: Hoff's understanding biography and the loveliness of the diary itself."
"Review" by , "One of the great forgotten works of 20th-century American literature."
"Review" by , "We can rejoice that [Opals'] enchanting diary has at last been republished."
"Review" by , "The Singing Creek is truly wonderful — an intriguing reading experience."
"Review" by , "A strange, sad tale...has at last been given a happy ending."
"Synopsis" by ,

Long before environmental consciousness became popular, a young nature writer named Opal Whitely captured America's heart. Opal's childhood diary, published in 1902, became an immediate bestseller, one of the most talked-about books of its time. Wistful, funny, and wise, it was described by an admirer as "the revelation of the ...life of a feminine Peter Pan of the Oregon wilderness—so innocent, so intimate, so haunting, that I should not know where in all literature to look for a counterpart."

But the diary soon fell into disgrace. Condemning it as an adult-written hoax, skeptics stirred a scandal that drove the book into obscurity and shattered the frail spirit of its author.

Discovering the diary by chance, bestselling author Benjamin Hoff set out to solve the longstanding mystery of its origin. His biography of Opal that accompanies the diary provides fascinating proof that the document is indeed authentic—the work of a magically gifted child, America's forgotten interpreter of nature.

"Synopsis" by , Capturing America's heart in 1920, Opal's childhood diary became an immediate bestseller. Innocent and intimate, this haunting diary reveals the life of a kind of feminine Peter Pan in the Oregon wilderness. Rediscovered and proven authentic by the bestselling author of The Tao of Pooh, it is now accompanied by a biography and afterword. Syndicated radio news features.

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