Mormon author who won the prestigious Newbery Honor for her young adult fantasy book, Princess Academy (2005). Seven years later in 2012, she released the book's sequel, Palace of Stone.
She graduated from the University of Utah with a degree in English and, after pursuing an acting career for a time, received her graduate degree in Creative Writing from the University of Montana.
She was raised in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and remained in the faith during her adulthood years, writing both books for children and for adults.
She and her husband, Dean Hale, wrote two graphic novels together and became parents to four children: Max, Magnolia, Dinah and Wren.
She and fellow author Lois Lowry both received the Josette Frank Award for their works of children's literature.