Zibby Oneal Introduction

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(Contemporary Literary Criticism)

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Zibby Oneal 1934–

(Born Elizabeth Oneal) American novelist.

Oneal's two novels for young adults, The Language of Goldfish (1980) and A Formal Feeling (1982), are praised for their candid, unsentimental portrayals of teenagers with emotional difficulties. Struggling to preserve her childhood sensibility, the adolescent protagonist of The Language of Goldfish suffers so much internal tension that she attempts to commit suicide. In A Formal Feeling the central character contends with the conflicting emotions brought about by her mother's death and her father's remarriage. Oneal has also written three books for children.

(See also Contemporary Authors, Vol. 106 and Something about the Author, Vol. 30.)