Laura Ruby

Laura Ruby: Spins Haunting and Hopeful Young Adult Tales

December 5, 2019

In her latest creation, A National Book Award Finalist, Thirteen Doorways, Wolves Behind Them All, the New York Times calls Laura Ruby’s writing “Haunting and hopeful in equal measure.”

Set against the smokey embers of the Great Depression, kindling into the fires of World War II, with shadows of injustice, poverty, and death walking the streets in broad daylight, the protaganist, Frankie must find something worth holding on to in the ruins of a shattered America – and childhood.

When Frankie’s mother died and her father left her and her siblings at an orphanage in Chicago, she thought it was only temporary—just long enough for pops to get back on his feet. That’s why she is not prepared when he arrives for a weekend visit with a new woman on his arm and train tickets in his pocket. Frankie and her sister, Toni, find themselves abandoned at the orphanage, two young, unwanted women, doing everything they can to survive.

Ruby writes fiction for adults, teens and children. She is the author of the Printz Medal Winning novel Bone Gap, Edgar-nominated children’s mystery Lily’s Ghost, the ALA Quick Pick for teens Good Girls (2006), a collection of interconnected short stories about blended families for adults and the York trilogy. She is on the faculty of Hamline University’s Masters in Writing for Children Program and makes her home in the Chicago area.