What Is It About Judy Blume?



Self-assured, sexually frank and sometimes controversial, American writer Judy Blume has been inspiring passion and devotion among her millions of fans for over forty years.

Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing, Blubber, Deenie, It's Not The End of The World, Starring Sally J Freedman as Herself, and, of course, Are You There God? It's Me Margaret - whether it was books about boys, first bras, bullying or best friend break ups, Judy accompanied her young readers on the awkward passage from childhood to adolescence.

Sarah Cuddon talks to Judy Bloom - and also to Grace Dent, Devorah Baum, Sarah Sheldon and Retta Bowen about the lasting impact Judy had on their lives.

Say 'Judy Blume' and 'Forever' to a bunch of thirty-something women and, chances are, they will glance dreamily into the middle distance, a few seconds before an embarrassed smirk hits their face.

Sarah hears from children's librarian Ferelith Hordon and children's book critic Nicholas Tucker, who once suggested in the Times Literary Supplement that Forever might more accurately be described as 'Five Go On An Orgy'.

Producer: Tamsin Hughes

A Testbed production for BBC Radio 4.