New York Review of Books

“In 1963 thirty-four-year-old Louise Fitzhugh was fresh off a successful exhibition of her paintings and drawings at an Upper East Side gallery when she suddenly declared her fine art career a catastrophe. She’d recently illustrated the children’s book Suzuki Beane, a charming Beatnik spin on Eloise, written by her friend and sometime lover Sandra Scoppettone, and it was to children’s literature that Louise turned again. She wrote to her lifelong friend the poet James Merrill to tell him about her new book project: “It is called Harriet the Spy and is about a nasty little girl who keeps a notebook on all her friends.”

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