When Judy Blume began writing for pre-teens and teens in the '70s and '80s, young readers devoured her novels, which spoke to their hopes and anxieties. Two of her books Forever, and Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret... were banned in some places.
In Blake Nelson's novel, Paranoid Park, a 16-year-old skateboarder is implicated when a transit cop is killed at the local skate park, and withdraws into silence as a way of dealing with it. Director Gus Van Sant recently released a film version of the novel.
Paulsen is a prolific writer of children's books. He began writing over twenty years ago, when he was coming to terms with his alcoholism. For many years he and his wife lived in poverty in rural Minnesota. This changed when Paulsen won the Newberry Award for children's fiction in 1985 with "Dogsong." His most recent adult book is "Clabbered Dirt, Sweet Grass." It celebrates American farm life and recounts the activities of a multigenerational farm family.
Judy Blume's novels for young adults such "Forever," "Deenie," and "Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret," have generated controversy for their frank treatment of masturbation and teen sexuality. Blume also writes adult novels. Her latest "Smart Women," is the story of two divorced women in their forties and their teenage daughters.