Linda Sue Park was born in Urbana, Illinois, and grew up outside Chicago. The daughter of Korean immigrants, she has been writing poems and stories since she was 4 years old, and her favorite thing to do as a child was read. She sold her first piece of writing—a haiku—at 9. After a varied career in public-relations writing, food journalism and teaching English as a second language, she began writing books for children in 1997. Her third book, A Single Shard, won the 2002 Newbery Medal, and her most recent novel, the New York Times best-seller A Long Walk to Water, won the 2011 Jane Addams Children's Book Award. She lives in Rochester, New York.