book review, Something To Do

Sharing the Life Journeys of 3 Amazing Women Writers

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{Guest post from author, Julie K. Rubini}

The voice of justice in the world of sports. The most honored author of children’s literature. The original Nancy Drew ghostwriter.

I have had the honor of sharing the life journeys of these three amazing women writers through the Biographies for Young Readers published by Ohio University Press.

Christine Brennan was a 22-year-old intern at the Miami Herald when she made her way into a NFL locker room to get her story. Christine was one of the first female sports journalists to break down the walls and pave the way for future journalists to interview the players immediately after a game. In her roles as USA Today sports columnist, commentator, author and speaker, Christine uses her voice to ensure justice in the world of sports. My biography Eye to Eye: Sports Journalist Christine Brennan shares her journey from intern to insider in the male-dominated world of sports journalism.

Virginia Hamilton is the most honored author of children’s literature. Ever. Virginia was the first African American male or female, to receive the Newbery Medal in 1975, for her novel M. C. Higgins, the Great. As a child, the stories from family members flitted around Virginia much like the summer fireflies on their property in Yellow Springs, Ohio. Virginia combined the elements of imagination, memories, and fabrications of stories as the basis of her incredible tales. It was an honor to meet with the late Ms. Hamilton’s husband Arnold Adoff in the home where many of her stories were crafted, and then to share her journey in Virginia Hamilton: America’s Storyteller.

Mildred “Millie” Augustine was born in Ladora, Iowa, a town so small that as a child, she claims to have read every book available. Millie was first published when she was twelve years old and proclaimed to her father that she wanted to become a writer. After graduating from the University of Iowa (the first, male or female, to receive a master’s in journalism from the college) Millie began writing for Edward Stratemeyer, the genius behind many series for young readers. Edward contracted with Millie to write the first three books for the new Nancy Drew Mystery Stories. Twelve days after the books were published, Edward died suddenly. Missing Millie Benson: The Secret Case of the Nancy Drew Ghostwriter and Journalist takes the reader from Millie’s childhood to her role in the survival of the series. Millie’s personal journey reads much like a Nancy Drew story, where the heroine prevails despite challenges.

I came into the world of children’s literature through tragedy. My husband and I lost our oldest daughter nearly 19 years ago. We felt compelled to not only honor Claire, but our relationships with each other and our two children as well. We established Claire’s Day, a children’s book festival in her honor. Claire’s Day has grown from a one-day event to multiple sites, featuring dozens of children’s book authors and illustrators, honoring over 1200 young children selected as the most improved readers in their schools.

Claire's Day

Claire’s Day partners with over thirty schools for our author outreach program, impacting over 20,000 children and their families every year.

Claire not only loved to read but shared her passion with others. Claire’s Day does the same in our mission to honor and remember Claire by inspiring children and families to be lifelong readers through a variety of literary opportunities and experiences.

Julie K Rubini


Julie K. RubiniJulie K. Rubini is a children’s book author, founder of Claire’s Day, wife and mom.

Her published works include Eye to Eye: Sports Journalist Christine Brennan, Virginia Hamilton: America’s Storyteller, Missing Millie Benson: The Secret Case of the Nancy Drew Ghostwriter and Journalist, and Hidden Ohio.

Julie and her husband Brad established Claire’s Day, a children’s book festival in honor of their daughter. A highlight of the festival is the C.A.R.E. Awards, given to children selected as the most improved readers in their schools.

Julie and her family, including a daughter, Kyle, and son Ian have traveled extensively together, including all fifty states and several continents.

Julie is the recipient of the Toledo Area Jefferson Award (2015), YWCA Milestones Award (2016) and the University of Toledo Distinguished Alumni (2015).

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