American children's writer who won a Newbery Medal for her 1993 book, Missing May. Her other acclaimed children's books include A Fine White Dust, I Had Seen Castles, and the Cobblestreet Cousins and Annie & Snowball series.
Her debut work, When I Was Young in the Mountains (1982), describes her childhood in the Appalachian region of West Virginia. She later received degrees from Morris Harvey College and Marshall University.
Her novel, A Fine White Dust, was a Newbery Honor winner in 1987.
She was raised by her grandparents after her parents divorced when she was four years old. Her brief marriage to a University of Akron professor produced a son named Nathaniel.
She won the Newbery Medal in 1993, one year before Lois Lowry won the same award for The Giver.