Award-winning children's author Konigsburg dies

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by Associated Press

Associated Press

Posted on April 21, 2013 at 11:05 PM

Updated Sunday, Apr 21 at 11:33 PM

FALLS CHURCH, Va. (AP) — E.L. Konigsburg, an author who twice won one of the top honors for children's literature, has died. She was 83.

Her son Paul Konigsburg says the longtime Florida resident died Friday at a hospital in Falls Church, Va., where she'd been living for the past few years with another son. She had suffered a stroke a week before she died.

She won the John Newbery Medal in 1997 for her book "The View from Saturday" and in 1968 for "From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler." The Newbery is one of the top honors for children's literature. Her family says she wrote 16 children's novels and illustrated 3 picture books.

In 1997, the Newbery committee called her story of a sixth grade Academic Bowl team and their coach "a unique, jubilant tour de force characterized by good humor, positive relationships, distinctive personalities and brilliant story telling."

Konigsburg said in an interview with The Associated Press at the time: "The award represents a kind of validation that I find just most gratifying."

Ingrid Bergman starred as Mrs. Frankweiler in a 1973 film adaptation of Konigsburg's book called "The Hideaways."

Konigsburg grew up in Pennsylvania and graduated from Carnegie Mellon University with a degree in chemistry. She married David Konigsburg in 1952, and the couple lived in several cities before settling in the Jacksonville, Fla., area.

Konigsburg, who had three sons, a daughter and a half-dozen grandchildren, started writing and illustrating children's books when her youngest child began kindergarten. Her husband died in 2001.

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