"We must never simply accept the voice of authority. We must think for ourselves. Throughout the centuries, Jews have learned by argument. I have tried to follow in that tradition, using the context of Jewish wisdom, by posting moral and ethical problems in my books and challenging young people to think about them, to think for themselves. Surely, that is the most important thing a young person can do — think independently."Carol Matas is an internationally acclaimed author of more than 45 books for children and young adults. Her best-selling work, which includes three award-winning series, has been translated into over a dozen languages including Spanish, Catalan, Japanese, Taiwanese, Turkish, Dutch, Danish, Swedish, Finnish, Norwegian, German, French, Indonesian, Bulgarian and Russian. She has adapted some of her books into plays and has had productions in Tel Aviv, Montreal, Toronto and Winnipeg.
A graduate of Actor’s Lab in London, England, Carol first earned a B.A. (English) from the University of Western Ontario. Her teaching experience includes Artists in the School (Manitoba Arts Council); visiting professor at Bemidji State University, Minnesota; and creative writing instructor with Continuing Education at the University of Winnipeg.
Carol writes contemporary and historical fiction, as well as science fiction and fantasy, and has recently expanded into picture books. She first began writing historical fiction when her Danish husband told her stories about his parents' experiences fighting the Nazis in World War II. Most of her books incorporate Jewish themes and 11 of her novels deal specifically with the Holocaust. Because she was well known for her Holocaust books for young readers, the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C. asked her to write Daniel’s Story, which became a best seller.
Over the years, Carol's knack for successfully infusing serious and thought-provoking issues into an action-driven format has kept readers of all ages engaged. Carol is also an inspiring and passionate speaker who is frequently invited to address children and adults alike across North America.
Carol's books have won over 100 awards and honours, including the Sydney Taylor Honor Award, Geoffrey Bilson Award, Silver Birch Award, Canadian Jewish Book Award, National Jewish Book Awards Finalist, and the ALA Notable List, The New York Times Review Notable List, The New York Public Library List for the Teen Age, and the Voya Best Book List. She has also been twice nominated for Canada's prestigious Governor General's Award.