(Photo posted on Facebook at the Everett Free Library)
Nancy I. Sanders (far left) was just 8 years old when her family was named the “Library Family of the Year” in her small hometown at the Everett Free Library. Growing up on a dairy farm in the Appalachian mountains of Pennsylvania, she grabbed any opportunity to read a book in between milking the cows and driving tractor.
Nancy has always loved trees. A sugar maple turned a brilliant red at the end of her driveway each fall. A willow tree’s graceful branches reached down to touch the tips of her toes as she would swing on the old wooden swingset her father built in the back yard. At Christmas, she hiked with her father up to Warrior Ridge behind the barn to chop down a pine tree and drag it home over the snow for Christmas.
She climbed wild apple trees with her sisters to pick apples that grew along the cow path. She picked cherries from the cherry tree that grew in the yard next to their 100-year-old farmhouse. Standing on a tall ladder, she picked pears from the two pear trees that grew in the horse pasture.
As Nancy grew up, she moved to California and married her husband Jeff. While raising their two sons, she established a prolific career as a children’s writer, publishing 5 or more books each year along with numerous articles. She has published over 100 books including bestselling and award-winning titles. Topics she loves to write about include retold Bible stories, African American history, and biographies. She’s written numerous picture books, chapter books, teaching resources, beginning readers, fiction and nonfiction.
THE VERY OLDEST PEAR TREE is the first biography Nancy has ever written about a tree. What a joy it was to travel to the Boston area and actually get to meet that grand old patriot, the Endicott pear tree.