Margaret O(ldroyd) Hyde Critical Essays


(Contemporary Literary Criticism)

Margaret O(ldroyd) Hyde 1917–

American nonfiction writer for young adults and children, and editor.

Hyde is a noted writer of books dealing with scientific and social issues. She selects each subject for its importance to young people and approaches the material from a practical standpoint. Hyde thoroughly researches each of her topics and consults experts in order to provide the most recent information for her readers. Her writing style is clear and easy to follow, although some critics believe her books could be better organized. She has been praised for her talent of exploring the most fascinating questions in science and for rendering complex concepts, such as molecular structures, in understandable terms.

Hyde's books emphasize the day-to-day application of scientific information. Atoms Today and Tomorrow explains the properties of the atom and concentrates on the peaceful uses of atomic energy. In Driving Today and Tomorrow Hyde explains the mechanics of automobiles and offers suggestions on how to be a better driver. Other books on drugs, venereal disease, rape, and suicide objectively discuss relevant facts and implications and include references for further reading and counseling. Hyde has also written studies of such issues as pollution, overpopulation, and runaways. She has often been faulted for failing to present new facts on a subject, yet she offers her readers informative material and shows them ways to improve their lives and environment. (See also Contemporary Authors, Vols. 1-4, rev. ed., and Something About the Author, Vol. 1.)