Scott O’Dell

Scott O’Dell

Scott O’Dell (May 23, 1898 – October 15, 1989) was an American author of 26 novels for young people, along with three novels for adults and four nonfiction books. He wrote historical fiction, primarily, including several children’s novels about historical California and Mexico. For his contribution as a children’s writer he received the biennial, international Hans Christian Andersen Award in 1972, the highest recognition available to creators of children’s books. He received The University of Southern Mississippi Medallion in 1976 and the Catholic Libraries Association Regina Medal in 1978.

O’Dell’s best known work is the historical novel Island of the Blue Dolphins (1960), which won the 1961 Newbery Medal and the 1963 Deutscher Jugend literatur preis in its German translation. It was also named to the Lewis Carroll Shelf Award list. He was one of the annual Newbery runners-up for three other books: The King’s Fifth (1966), The Black Pearl (1967), and Sing Down the Moon (1970).

Books in order of publication:


  • Country of the Sun (Southern California, an Informal Guide), Thomas Y. Crowell Co. 1/1957

Children’s book series


  1. Island of the Blue Dolphins, Houghton Mifflin 1/1960
  2. Zia, Houghton Mifflin 3/1976

Seven Serpents

  1. The Captive, Houghton Mifflin 1/1979.
  2. Feathered Serpent, Houghton Mifflin 10/1981
  • The Amethyst Ring, Houghton Mifflin 4/1983
  • Omnibus Seven Serpents Trilogy, Sourcebooks Jabberwocky 3/2009

Other novels

  • Woman of Spain (a Story of Old California), Houghton Mifflin 1934
  • Hill of the Hawk (Novel of Early California), Houghton Mifflin 1/1947
  • The Sea is Red, Henry Holt and Company 1958
  • Journey to Jericho, Houghton Mifflin 8/1964
  • The King’s Fifth, Houghton Mifflin 9/1966
  • The Black Pearl, Houghton Mifflin 1/1967
  • Dark Canoe, illustrated by Milton Johnson, Houghton Mifflin 1/1968
  • Sing Down the Moon, Houghton Mifflin 9/1970
  • Treasure of Topo-El-Bampo, Houghton Mifflin 2/1972
  • Cruise of the Arctic Star, Houghton Mifflin 3/1973
  • The Child of Fire, Houghton Mifflin 9/1974
  • Hawk That Dare Not Hunt by Day, Houghton Mifflin 9/1975
  • The 290, Houghton Mifflin 10/1976
  • Carlota, Houghton Mifflin 10/1977
  • Kathleen Please Come Home, Houghton Mifflin 5/1978
  • Daughter of Don Saturnino, Oxford University Press 3/1979
  • Sarah Bishop (They Took Away Her Home and Her Family), Houghton Mifflin 1/1980
  • The Spanish Smile, Houghton Mifflin 10/1982
  • Castle in the Sea, Houghton Mifflin 10/1983
  • Alexandra, Houghton Mifflin 4/1984
  • The Road to Damietta, Houghton Mifflin 10/1985
  • Streams to River, River to the Sea (a Novel of Sacagawea), Houghton Mifflin 4/1986
  • Serpent Never Sleeps (a Novel of Jamestown and Pocahontas), Houghton Mifflin 9/1987
  • Black Star, Bright Dawn, Houghton Mifflin 1/1988
  • My Name Is Not Angelica, Houghton Mifflin 10/1989
  • Thunder Rolling in the Mountains, with Elizabeth Hall, Houghton Mifflin 4/1992
  • Venus Among the Fishes, with Elizabeth Hall, Houghton Mifflin 4/1995
%d bloggers like this: