Linda Sue Park
|Linda Sue Park|
Linda Sue Park at the 2007 Texas Book Festival
March 25, 1961 |
Urbana, Illinois, USA
|Genre||Young-adult fiction, poetry|
|Notable awards||Newbery Medal
Linda Sue Park is an American author of teen fiction. Park published her first novel, Seesaw Girl, in 1999. She has written six children’s novels and five picture books. Park's work achieved prominence when she received the prestigious 2002 Newbery Medal for her novel A Single Shard. She has written the ninth book in the 39 Clues series, Storm Warning, published on 25 May 2010.
Park was born on March 25, 1960 in Urbana, Illinois and grew up outside Chicago. Linda Sue Park's parents immigrated to the United States just after they were married in South Korea. Linda was soon forced to speak only English in the duration of her home and speaking Korean was especially forbidden. Park has been writing poetry and stories since the age of four. Park published her first poem when she was nine years old for Trailblazer magazine. Through elementary and high school, she continued to publish poems in magazines for children and young people. Linda was considered as an academically intelligent student, getting straight As in school. Ever since she was young, she struggled to make friends and encountered various emotional wounds especially when the others were talking about her. She would always relieve and alleviate this pressure by constantly going to the school library where she would mostly spend time during school breaks and lunches. She published her very first book in 1999, Seesaw Girl.
Park competed on the gymnastics team at Stanford University and graduated with a high degree in English. She also obtained advanced degrees in literature from Trinity College in Ireland and also from the University of London.
In early 2011, Park made her visit to South Korea, where she initially went to Gyeonggi Suwon International School for her personal and literary speeches of her life and also emphasizing the significance of reading to young people. Most of her short story books including Seesaw Girl and her book A Single Shard has been a popular source of class textbook in English lessons and being covered in lessons throughout the school curriculum.
Before writing her first book, Park worked at many jobs, including public relations for a major oil firm, food journalism for British magazines and newspapers, and teaching English as a second language to college students. She currently serves on the board of directors for the National Children's Book and Literacy Alliance.
Park competed in the television game show Jeopardy! on an episode aired October 20, 2006, where she finished in 3rd place—losing, ironically, on the final question from a category called "Literary Title Objects".
Park writes historical fiction. With the exception of three picture books and two novels, all of Park’s books center upon Korean history and Korean culture. Her first three novels are set in ancient or medieval Korea. However, her fourth novel, When My Name Was Keoko, is about the more recent history of Japanese occupation of Korea during World War II. Project Mulberry occurs in a contemporary setting outside Chicago. Park’s book, Archer’s Quest, introduces to you a historical figure into modern times. Park shares her passion for baseball in her book, Keeping Score. Park's latest book, A Long Walk to Water features family friend Salva Dut and his childhood experience growing up in the Sudan as well as another character Nya who spends her entire day gathering and transporting water to her family.
Park researches her Korean heritage for her books, demonstrated by historical details within the story along with sections for author’s notes and bibliographies. Her topics feature characteristic elements of Korean culture, including: embroidery (Seesaw Girl); kite fighting (The Kite Fighters); celadon pottery (A Single Shard); silkworms (Project Mulberry); Korean food (Bee-Bim Bop); and archery (Archer’s Quest). She also continues to publish poetry.
A Long Walk to Water
A Long Walk to Water involves the true story of Salva Dut. Dut is currently involved in a program of his creation called Water for Sudan, which builds wells for villages in Sudan. Each well is also accompanied by building a school. If an organization or person donates $5000 or more, a quarter of the cost of a well, they receive a partial dedication of a well. Linda Sue Park is using her book as a platform for promoting this program.
- Seesaw Girl (1999)
- Children's Literature Choices, Best Book 2000 List
- The Kite Fighters (2000)
- A Single Shard (2001)
- When My Name Was Keoko (2002)
- Jane Addams Honor citation
- The Firekeeper's Son (2004)
- Mung-Mung: A Foldout Book of Animal Sounds (2004)
- What Does Bunny See?: A Book of Colors and Flowers (2005)
- Yum! Yuck!: A Foldout Book of People Sounds From Around the World (2005)
- Project Mulberry (2005)
- Bee-bim Bop (2005)
- Archer's Quest (2006)
- Click: One novel ten authors, chapter one (2007)
- Storm Warning (2010)
- A Long Walk to Water (2010)
- Trust No One (2012)
- "On Meeting a Poet," "Changing the Sheets," "Mobius," " Fourth-Grade Science Project," Avatar Review, Summer 1999
- "Handstand", Atlanta Review, Spring/Summer 2000
- "Seven Sins: Portrait of an Aristocratic Young Woman," "Irreversible Loyalty," "A Little World," "The Ramparts at Calvi," The Alsop Review
- "Armchair Journey," "Hyphen," Miller's Pond, Spring 2002
- "Picturing the Words," "When the Last Panda Died," "Tide Pool," Avatar Review, Summer 2008
- "Linda Sue Park", The Horn Book Magazine, July/August 2002
- "Who Wrote That? Featuring Linda Sue Park, California Kids! October 2003
- "Linda Sue Park's Biography"
- "Linda Sue Park: A Teacher Found", Teaching PreK–8, Nov/Dec 2004
- "An Interview with Linda Sue Park"
- "Linda Sue Park: Bookfest 02", A Library of Congress video webcast
- "Linda Sue Park Q & A"
- "Linda Sue Park's Interview Transcript from Scholastic
- "A Interview With Linda Sue Park", The Alsop Review
- "Linda Sue Park", DownHome Books
- "Author Update: Linda Sue Park"