Gidget: The Septuagenarian Jewish Surfing Icon

Alice Gregory at Tablet:

The word Gidget, if it evokes anything in one’s mind, likely compels mental images of gingham bikinis, improvised luaus, and berserk 1950s-style optimism. Maybe Sandra Dee, pre-alcoholism, is pictured, or Sally Field before she was a flying nun. One definitely does not imagine a Jewish septuagenarian, married to a Yiddish scholar, with a tendency toward recreational hitchhiking. But that is who Kathy Zuckerman is, and Kathy Zuckerman is Gidget.

Gidget: The Little Girl With Big Ideas was written by Kathy’s father, the Czech-born screenwriter Frederick Kohner, in less than a month in 1957 and published the same year by G.P. Putnam’s Sons. It skyrocketed up the best-seller list, went on to sell 30 million copies, and was translated into dozens of languages, including Hebrew.

more here.