Katherine Applegate was born in Michigan, a fact which allows her to pretend she is a hearty Midwesterner, even though she hates the cold. Katherine’s parents, a tolerant sort, allowed her to have many pets growing up, and she worked for a veterinarian in high school. She lived in Michigan, Illinois and Texas before graduating from The University of Texas at Austin with a degree in Aimlessness and a minor in Indecision.

Katherine worked as a plant waterer (killed them) and a cocktail waitress (spilled them) before realizing the world would be a safer place if she’d write books instead. Since then, she’s written over 150 books for children and young adults, many in collaboration with her husband, Michael Grant. Animorphs (Scholastic), their long-running series, sold over 35 million copies worldwide. They don’t collaborate much anymore, because they would like to remain married.

Katherine’s recent work includes a picture book, The Buffalo Storm (Clarion); an early chapter series, Roscoe Riley Rules (HarperCollins); YA thriller Eve & Adam (Feiwel & Friends / Macmillan), which she wrote with her husband, and Home of the Brave (Feiwel & Friends / Macmillan), which won the SCBWI 2008 Golden Kite Award for Best Fiction, the Bank Street 2008 Josette Frank Award, and was a SLJ Best Book of the Year.

In 2013, Katherine won the Newbery Medal for The One and Only Ivan (HarperCollins) which she was inspired to write after reading about the true story of a captive gorilla known as Ivan, the Shopping Mall Gorilla. The real Ivan lived alone in a tiny cage for twenty-seven years at a shopping mall before being moved to Zoo Atlanta, where he was a beloved celebrity. The One and Only Ivan has gone on to win numerous additional accolades including the Christopher Medal, an SCBWI Crystal Kite Award, a nomination for the E.B. White Read Aloud Award as well as appearing in the coveted #1 spot on the New York Times bestseller list.

Katherine is currently working on a non-fiction picture book about the real life Ivan as well as various middle grade projects.

She lives near San Francisco with her husband, two children, and an array of neurotic pets.

Katherine Applegate is represented by Elena Giovinazzo.
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