Lenora Mattingly Weber Critical Essays

Introduction

Lenora Mattingly Weber 1895–1971

American young adult novelist and adult short story writer and journalist. Weber, author of the popular Beany Malone series, was for years one of the most widely read authors of books for teenage girls. She published her first book, Wind on the Prairie, in 1929. In her more than forty years as an author Weber wrote over thirty books, most of which are romances stressing old-fashioned values, the age-old boy/girl crises of adolescence, and the importance of family relationships. Many of her novels, particularly her earlier efforts, are set on a ranch, reflecting the fact that Weber spent most of her life in Colorado. Although Weber's fiction is frequently criticized today for its sentimentality, its restricted vision of a woman's role, and its failure to confront contemporary issues, it has without question been an important literary influence on several generations of American girls. (See also Contemporary Authors, Vols. 19-20; obituary, Vols. 29-32, rev. ed.; Contemporary Authors Permanent Series, Vol. 1, and Something about the Author, Vol. 2.)