by Margaret Anne Hume

Book Cover: “Just Mary” Reader: Mary Grannan, Selected Stories

Selected, edited, and introduced by Margaret Anne Hume.

Presents a selection of Mary Grannan’s CBC broadcast scripts from children’s radio programs Just Mary, The Land of Supposing, and Jubilee Road, and television program Maggie Muggins. Broadcast from 1947 to 1962.

For twenty-three years during the golden age of radio in Canada, stories for children by Mary Grannan, "Just Mary," were broadcast by CBC and beloved across the country. She retired from broadcasting in 1962 and died in 1975, but her sweet-tempered and humorous stories still have the power to entertain, while recapturing the atmosphere of another time.

Grannan published stories from Just Mary and Maggie Muggins in over thirty best-selling books, but she had other radio series that were never released in print. The "Just Mary" Reader presents for the first time a selection of her stories from two other radio drama series. Jubilee Road tells the adventures and misadventures of Johnny and Patty Little and their friend Salty Pickle. Or, as Johnny describes it: "We get into quite a few messes, but if you know us, you'll know that it's hardly ever our fault."

In Land of Supposing, Grannan retold fairy tales and legends from around the world, as well as a few legends of her own making. Previously unpublished selections from Just Mary and Maggie Muggins complete the collection in “Just Mary” Reader: Mary Grannan, Selected Stories.


The collection of radio and television scripts presented in the “Just Mary” Reader offers a cross-section of works by Mary Evelyn Grannan, who wrote and broadcast children’s programs for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, first on radio and later on television, between 1939 and 1962. The former elementary schoolteacher from Fredericton, New Brunswick, produced some of the most popular children’s programs broadcast by CBC during this period. Although she wrote around twenty different series, the longest running and best loved were Just Mary and Maggie Muggins, both of which became best-selling books.


With the broadcasts long faded, the books alone do not permit a full appreciation of Grannan’s talent for dialogue and script-writing. The goal of this collection is to enhance the understanding of her work by presenting to readers the opportunity to peruse and reflect upon her writings in their original script form, and to present some scripts from two other series – Land of Supposing and Jubilee Road – that have never appeared in print. Since the scripts are set in their cultural time period, they offer as well a glimpse into the content of broadcast writing for Canadian children in the 1940s, 1950s, and early 1960s.

Reviews:John Twomey, former director of CBC's The Friendly Giant and Mr. Dressup and Professor Emeritus, Radio / Television Arts, Ryerson University, Toronto wrote:

"Mary Grannan's stories were part of the golden age of CBC's programs for children. This collection of original scripts will delight all who heard them as children, today's storytelling parents, children's librarians, and students studying early childhood education and radio / TV arts."

Judy MacLean, Acting Director, Nashwaaksis Public-School Library, Fredericton, New Brunswick wrote:

"I am honoured to recommend this book. The format will allow students to use the "Just Mary" Reader for Reader's Theatre, bringing Mary Grannan's stories to life for a new generation."

About the Author

Margaret Anne Hume, a former librarian at Concordia University in Montreal, is a graduate of the universities of New Brunswick and McGill. Her book, Just Mary: The Life of Mary Evelyn Grannan (Dundurn Group, 2006), is the first published biography of the award-winning CBC children’s writer and broadcaster, Mary Grannan, who was named as an historic national person by Parks Canada in 2018. “Just Mary” Reader”: Mary Grannan, Selected Stories (Dundurn Group, 2006) presents some of Grannan’s broadcast stories selected, edited, and introduced by Margaret. My Life: Adventures of an RCAF Flying Officer, Eaton’s Manager, and Family Man (Caissie Cape Publications, 2012), co-written by Margaret and her father, Albert Mair MacLean (1922-2012), details his family history, his service in the Second World War as an RCAF pilot on the Avro Lancaster bomber, and his career with Canadian retailer T. Eaton Company.

Margaret is the national chair of Canadian Authors Association.