An American author of young adult fiction, he is best known for his 2006 novel, London Calling, and for his 1997 novel, Tangerine. His other works include Crusader, A Plague Year, and Taken.
He graduated from Fordham University in 1973 and subsequently taught English to high school students in Florida.
His 2001 novel, Story Time, satirized standardized tests and the modern educational system.
He married Pamela Dixon in 1984 and later became the father of two children.
His work was compared by a School Library Journal reviewer to that of the renowned UK children's author, Roald Dahl.