November 7th, 2008

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Danny Dunn and the Internet Search

Yesterday afternoon, I taped an episode of Brookline Writes, a TV show on Brookline Access Television devoted to authors in Brookline. Dan Kimmel, Gary Wolf, and I had a panel discussion on science fiction that will be broadcast in Brookline in December. At some point it will probably also end up as streaming video on the BATV website.

The host of the show, Peggy Hogan, began the panel discussion by asking us what science fiction book we remembered having first read as a kid. Unfortunately, I can't recall the exact first science fiction book I read, although I did mention that Isaac Asimov was the first writer I really became aware of. But Peggy's question did spark another memory, and I answered that I also remembered a series of young adult science fiction books very fondly, the Danny Dunn series.

Does anyone else remember the Danny Dunn series by Raymond Abrashkin and Jay Williams? Danny was a teenager who lived with his widowed mom in the home of Professor Euclid Bullfinch. Danny had two friends, Joe and Irene, and the three of them would get into odd adventures, usually because the professor had invented some sort of new technology. My favorite book was Danny Dunn, Time Traveler, in which a quick trip to the future causes them to have two versions of Joe adventuring with them as they go back to the eighteenth century. But I also vividly remember Danny Dunn and the Smallifying Machine, in which Danny and his friends get shrunk to a tiny size and have to figure out how to get rescued.

I went looking for fan sites and there don't seem to be any. I found the Wikipedia page about Danny Dunn, but there isn't much there. Sadly, it looks like all the books are out of print, and any copies I might own, if I still do, are in storage.

I've requested a few from the library, but it would be really nice if some publisher considered bringing these books back into print.