Kelly Yang is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Front Desk series, including Front Desk, Three Keys, Room to Dream, and Key Player; New From Here; Finally Seen; Yes We Will, and young adult novels Parachutes and Private Label. Front Desk is Kelly’s award-winning middle grade debut novel about a 10 year old Chinese American immigrant girl who manages the front desk of a motel while her parents clean the rooms. Front Desk was awarded the 2019 Asian Pacific American Award for Literature, the Parents’ Choice Gold Medal, was the 2019 Global Read Aloud, and was named an Amazon Best Book of the Year, a Washington Post Best Book of the Year, a Kirkus Best Book of the Year, a School Library Journal Best Book of the Year, a NPR Best Book of the Year, and a Publisher’s Weekly Best Book of the Year. In 2022, Front Desk was selected as one of the 30 most influential children’s books of all time (Book Riot).
In addition to writing books for young children, she is also a screenwriter. Kelly immigrated to America when she was 6 years old and grew up in Southern California, where she and her parents worked in three different motels. She eventually left the motels and went to college at the age of 13 and law school at the age of 17. She is a graduate of UC Berkeley, where she majored in Political Science, and Harvard Law School. After law school, she gave up law to pursue her passion of writing and teaching children writing. She is the founder of The Kelly Yang Project (kellyyang.edu.hk), a leading writing and debating program for kids in Asia. As a writing teacher for 13 years, Kelly helped thousands of children find their voice and become better writers and more powerful speakers. Before turning to fiction, she was also a columnist for the South China Morning Post for many years. Her writing has been published in The New York Times, The Washington Post, and The Atlantic. She has three children and lives in Los Angeles.