John Wilkens may be the first critic on record to write about a forthcoming book by the late San Diego writer Dr. Seuss (Ted Geissel). The Bippolo Seed and Other Lost Stories will be published by Random House and appear in September 2011. According to Wilkens' essay in the San Diego Union Tribune, the book collects work by Dr. Seuss that appeared in the 1950's but that hasn't been seen since. Scholars Phillip Nel and SDSU's Joseph Thomas are quoted in the essay and make a case for the work's showing Seuss at the top of his game.
The book is edited by Charles Cohen, who has written to this blog:
What makes these stories so fascinating (and, to me, vitally important) is that (to turn one of Philip Nel's phrases around a bit), this was Dr. Seuss at exactly the time that he was becoming Dr. Seuss as we know him. Along with the excitement of recovering these "lost" stories so that fans can enjoy them, one of the main things that I cover in the introduction is how these stories mark the transition in Ted Geisel's career from predominantly prose stories to the rhyming tales that we so closely associate with him now. He already was a stellar children's book author. But these were the stories in which he experimented with perfecting his skills with the rhythm and sound of language in order to change how children would ultimately learn to read.
This is the first book of stories that are completely written and illustrated by Dr. Seuss to be published in more than two decades. We lost the marvelous man in 1991, so "new" material, especially of this quality, is a remarkable opportunity for fans around the globe.
John Wilkens, incidentally, seems to have a special interest in these subjects. See his essay where he suggests San Diego is the Capitol of Children's Literature:
See also an essay in the Guardian:
See also report on NPR: