James W. Bennett
Pen Name: James Bennett
Born: 1942 in Piatt County, Illinois
Bennett lived in Canton, Monticello and Bloomington, Illinois as a child. He graduated from Illinois Wesleyan University, Bloomington, Illinois with his BA and Illinois State University in Normal, Illinois with a MA. He once taught at Black Hawk Jr. College in Moline, Illinois and he currently resides in Normal, Illinois.
Biographical and Professional Information
James W. Bennett is the author of a number of uncompromising, challenging novels for teens. The books have earned him recognition as one of the nation's leading nevelists for young adults. Bennett's fiction, often revolving around sports themes, has been used successfully as a curriculum choice in schools.
Bennett has worked as a teacher of creative writing at a community college until 1976 and as an aide to high school-aged mentally handicapped students in Bloomington, Illinois, 1983-95. He was a writer-in-residence for Illinois secondary schools.
His book The Squared Circle is considered by many to be the finest basketball novel ever written.
- A Quiet Desperation, Thomas Nelson, 1983
- I Can Hear the Mourning Dove, Houghton Mifflin, 1990
- Dakota Dream, Scholastic, 1994
- The Squared Circle, Scholastic, 1995
- The Flex of the Thumb, Pin Oaks Press, 1996
- Blue Star Rapture, Scholastic, 1997
- Plunking Reggie Jackson, Simon and Schuster, 2001
- Old Hoss, McFarland, 2002
- Faith Wish, Holiday House, 2003
- Harry Porter Does Dallas, 2004
- How the Bible was Built, 2005
Titles for Purchase and at Your Library
A quiet desperation
Release Date: 1983
I Can Hear the Mourning Dove (Point Signature)
Release Date: 1997-01
Release Date: 1997
The Squared Circle
Release Date: 2002-01
The Flex of the Thumb
Release Date: 1996-08-01
Blue Star Rapture
Release Date: 2001-03-01
Plunking Reggie Jackson
Release Date: 2001-02-01
Old Hoss: A Fictional Baseball Biography of Charles Radbourn
Release Date: 2002-03-27
Release Date: 2003-04
Harvey Porter Does Dallas
Release Date: 2004-03-29
- "1995's Finest YA Novel" citation, Voice of Youth Advocates, 1996, for The Squared Circle
- James was honored at the 2004 Illinois Authors Book Fair sponsored by the Illinois Center for the Book and the Illinois State Library in Springfield, Illinois.
Speaking Engagements and Upcoming Appearances
Speaking Engagement Availability: Yes, contact publisher:
c/o Author Mail
425 Madison Avenue
New York, NY, 10017
This page can only be edited by Illinois Center for the Book staff, this author or this author's representatives. Please contact us for access.