Betty Carter Brock, 80, a longtime Alexandria resident who wrote the popular children's book "No Flying in the House," died Dec. 4 at a nursing home in Lake Forest, Ill., where she had lived for three months. She had Alzheimer's disease.
Family members said that ever since Mrs. Brock's book was published in 1970, she had received mail and drawings from young admirers all across the country. Children loved to draw Gloria, the book's tiny, talking dog who raises a little girl, Annabel. The book was illustrated by Wallace Tripp and also published in Great Britain and Japan. It was performed as a play in 1995 by the Lifeline Theater in Chicago.
In her review of the book for the New York Times, writer Eudora Welty called the story a gentle and imaginative fantasy "especially commendable for the quality of its fairies, beings of an inhuman race, glittering, intense, unpredictable." It was reissued in 1982 and has appeared on a number of lists of books recommended for young readers.
Mrs. Brock's works for children also included "The Shades," published in 1971.
She was a scholar of Japanese culture and history, and her 1,500-volume Japanese book collection was acquired by Georgetown University in 2001.
She traveled extensively throughout Japan and for two decades was volunteer librarian for the Japan-America Society of Washington.
She was also a founding member of the Mount Vernon Genealogical Society and a member of the Children's Book Guild of Washington.
Mrs. Brock was a Washington native and a graduate of Wilson High School. She attended the University of North Carolina and George Washington University. She accompanied her husband to Navy posts in the United States before settling in Alexandria in 1969.
Her husband, retired Capt. C.C. Brock, died in June.
Survivors include two daughters, Alison Brock Owings-Cinelli of Lake Forest and Leslie Brock-Evers, who is posted with the Foreign Service in Budapest; three grandchildren; and a great-granddaughter.