RPCV author Dorothea Johnson Jensen (Brazil 1969-70) was born in Boston. As a child, she moved to Chillicothe, Illinois. Jensen majored in English Literature (Carleton College) and earned an M.A. in Education (University of New Mexico). She lives now in Contoocook, New Hampshire.
Her brother, Paul C. Johnson, was a PCV in Ghana in 1968-70. Her son, Nathaniel Jensen, was a PCV in Estonia, and her daughter, Louisa Wood, was a PCV in China.
She and her husband (also an RPCV Brazil 1969-70) ) have lived all over the United States, as well as in The Netherlands.
Jensen’s first historical novel for young readers, The Riddle of Penncroft Farm, was named an International Reading Association Teachers’ Choices Selection soon after publication. It is used in classrooms throughout the U.S. as an enrichment resource for studying the American Revolution.
Jensen’s second historical novel for young readers, A Buss from Lafayette, was released in 2016 and has won a number of honors and awards since its publication in 2016. It concerns a witty, troubled young girl whose life might just be changed by a playful kiss from a great hero of the American Revolution.
With a colleague, Sienna Larson, Jensen has written a complete teacher’s guide for A Buss from Lafayette. This makes it easy to use this story in the classroom to enrich study of the Revolution, General Lafayette, and life in the early 19th century. Jensen is now working on a story set in 17th century Massachusetts, called A Scalp on the Moon.
Tizzy, the Christmas Shelf Elf was Jensen’s first illustrated story in verse for elementary school-aged children. She has now completed three sequels: Blizzy, the Worrywart Elf, Dizzy, the Stowaway Elf, and Frizzy, the S.A.D. Elf. Modeled on the classic poem, “A Visit from St. Nicholas”, these all feature decidedly 21st century elves and have won honors/awards. So far, she has written five elf stories.
Inspired by the Broadway hit, HAMILTON, and by Longfellow’s “The Midnight Ride of Paul Revere,” author Dorothea Jensen wrote this short rhyming narrative about the Marquis de Lafayette and his crucial role in our Revolutionary War.
A glossary and extensive endnotes supply further information about the historical figures and events mentioned in the poem. This playful historical account is aimed at middle schoolers, as well as young and older adults.