Barbara Corcoran Barbara Elleman - Essay

Barbara Elleman

(Contemporary Literary Criticism)

Deserted by his superstitious Indian guides when he threatens to kill a marauding wolverine, a hunter faces starvation and freezing to death in the Alaskan wilderness [in The Loner: A Story of the Wolverine]. The story of how he survives until the conscience-stricken guide brings in a plane to get him is smoothly interwoven with the wolverine's voracious struggle for food…. Both the man's plight and the animal's right to live are well portrayed, with enough tension and background information to appeal to both natural history and adventure story readers.

Barbara Elleman, "Children's Books: 'The Loner: A Story of the Wolverine'," in Booklist (reprinted by permission of the American Library Association; copyright 1978 by the American Library Association), Vol. 75, No. 5, November 1, 1978, p. 477.

Motherless Maggie [in Me and You and a Dog Named Blue] is content to play on her high-school baseball team, work at Mr. Sullivan's clam shack, and dream of a career in pro ball—but then, having yielded to the temptation to "try out" a beautiful Jaguar left invitingly on a beach, Maggie is taken over by the car's fabulously wealthy owner CoCo Rainbolt, a do-gooder who sings to prisoners and such. Instead of pressing charges on the car "theft," CoCo takes up with Maggie and her father—but plans the outings her way…. Maggie's disabled, beer-drinking father is nicely drawn, but Corcoran is as heavy-handed with CoCo, who runs most of this show, as CoCo is with everyone else; and the conflict among the three makes for a fairly thin plot. Nevertheless Maggie's baseball interest combined with her likable good sense gives this a limited, topical appeal.

"Older Fiction: 'Me and You and a Dog Named Blue'," in Kirkus Reviews (copyright © 1979 The Kirkus Service, Inc.), Vol. XLVII, No. 6, March 15, 1979, p. 331.