Betsy James is an award-winning author and illustrator who has published over a dozen books for children and young adults. James has worked as a freelance writer and illustrator for almost 28 years. She studied at Mount Holyoke College and the University of Utah and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in English. However, she did not attend art school and claims to be a “self-taught” illustrator. Her work covers a variety of fictional genres and includes from picture books to novels for young adults.
James has received an array of honors and awards for her writing and illustration, including the latest award, the 1998 Junior Library Guild selection for her book Flashlight. Her most recent work, My Chair, published by Scholastic, includes illustrations by Mary Newell DePalma. In My Chair, James portrays the imaginative capability of children. Each child’s chair is something special-a cave that can hold all the treasure of the world; a monster that eats pens and coins and someone’s little brother.
James currently lives in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Her hobbies include hiking in the desert in New Mexico and picking up rocks. She is fluent in Spanish and enjoys speaking to both adult and children’s audiences in English or Spanish.