Karen Spafford-Fitz grew up on a farm near Kingston, Ontario where her early training as a writer involved reading stacks of books, including Anne of Green Gables, Nancy Drew, and The Hardy Boys. Eager to read more, she studied English Language and Literature at Queen’s University, followed by a degree in Education. After teaching elementary and junior-high students for eight years, Karen stepped away from the classroom to focus on her own stories. She writes with the heart of an educator, and her middle-grade and young adult novels have been recognized as “The Year’s Best Books” by Resource Links Journal and the Canadian Children’s Book Centre. Her teen novel, Pickpocket, is set in southern France and was longlisted for the American Library in Paris Book Awards for a title that deepens an understanding of France and the French. An energetic presenter, Karen has spoken to thousands of students in English and in French about the transformative power of books, reading and writing. When she is not presenting at schools or writing in her Edmonton studio, Karen is often outdoors—hiking, running and dreaming about her next story.