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Chapter 28 - July Baby

I am a birthday/event card sender. While Dave sometimes thinks I am personally keeping Hallmark in business, the truth is that I have actually reduced my card buying in recent years. Now I get cards primarily for family and acknowledge other birthdays on Facebook, or via email or text. As I was getting together my cards for the month, it occurred to me just how many family members and friends were born in July - 11 at this writing. This is more than any other month of the year for me. As a July baby myself I wondered why. Is it that October is a particularly good month to get pregnant or do we July babies just attract other July babies?

Then, you know me, I started thinking about authors born in July and whether I gravitate towards their writing as well. As I started to dig and go down that rabbit hole on the internet I realized that there is no complete list or compendium of writer birthdays available. Some lists have more classical authors, others the top 10, still other lists show the most well known authors born in July. Whatever list I chose it seemed I could continue to add another one or two authors to my own list of writers born in July.

So here are some of my favorite July babies whose books I recommend.

David McCullough - David McCullough is best know as a historian and writer of history. He was born on July 7, 1933 and sadly passed away last August. He was a two time Pulitzer Prize winner. He graduated college with a degree in English and went to work for Sports Illustrated. McCullough left there and went to work for the history magazine American Heritage. While there he found a story so exiting that he spent three years writing The Johnstown Flood in his spare time. He wrote over 13 books, all extensively researched. My favorite is John Adams which was made into a mini-series years ago.

E.B. White - White was an American author born July 11, 1899. For a long time he worked for various magazines and newspapers and is known for his contributions to William Strunk's Elements of Style. I think his greatest contribution to the world of writing were his children's books - Charlotte's Web, Stuart Little, and The Trumpet of the Swan.

Ernest Hemingway - One of America's greatest writers and one of our tragic figures, Hemingway was born July 21, 1899. He is best known for his minimalist style of writing as he believed that the deeper meaning of ideas and themes in stories should not be evident. He was a man of his time and his works have come under fire recently for their language and attitudes. If you've never read him before I recommend you start with his first novel, The Sun Also Rises.

Celeste Ng - A more contemporary author than those listed above, Celeste Ng was born on July 30, 1980. While Ng is a relative newcomer to the world of writing, her works have gotten attention. Ng's first book was Everything I Never Told You which has been optioned for a movie and Little Fires Everywhere which became a series produced by Reese Witherspoon's production company. I have not read her latest book yet which is Our Missing Hearts.

J.K. Rowling - This is a lady who can pretty much stand on her own and needs no introduction. The creator of Harry Potter and author of many more books since then was born on July 31, 1965. Rowling is best known for her Harry Potter books and the rags to riches story of her success. As an author, that is only half of the picture as she does write adult mysteries under the name of Robert Galbraith which are quite good. I suggest you start with the first one - The Cuckoo's Calling. She has been criticized recently for her views on protecting natal women's rights.

So out of the 31 authors I found who were born in the month of July I find that I have read about 75% of them, I think I need to check out the remaining 25%!

Do you find that you have a lot of friends and family born in your birthday month? Have you ever checked to find out if your favorite authors were born in that month? Let me know!


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