Kelly Yang’s family immigrated from China when she was a young girl, and she grew up in California, in circumstances very similar to those of Mia Tang – helping her parents manage several motels. Her only sanctuary was the library, where she could immerse herself in the world of a book, and where the librarians would encourage her. They saw potential in her, made her feel smart and valued, and she credits them with the success she went on to achieve – attending university at the age of thirteen, and graduating from UC Berkeley, and then Harvard Law School as one of the youngest ever female graduates.
Upon graduation, Kelly gave up law to pursue her dream of writing and teaching kids to write. She is the founder of The Kelly Yang Project, a leading writing and debating programme for children in Asia and the United States. She is also a columnist for the South China Morning Post and has been published in the New York Times, the Washington Post and The Atlantic. Kelly is the mother of three children and splits her time between Hong Kong and San Francisco.