Lois Lowry is the author of more than 30 books for young adults. Her celebrated novels Number the Stars and The Giver both earned the Newbery Award. Number the Stars, which is celebrating its 25th anniversary this year, was also awarded the National Jewish Book Award and the Sidney Taylor Award from the National Jewish Libraries. She additionally received the International Reading Association’s Children’s Book Award for her first novel, A Summer to Die, as well as the Boston Globe-Horn Book Award, the California Young Reader Medal, the Mark Twain Readers Prize, and the Dorothy Canfield Fisher Award. Her novel Rabble Starkey, published in 1987, won the Boston Globe-Horn Book Award, Golden Kite Award from the Society of Children’s Book Writers. Her many beloved books also include the Anastasia Krupnik series, the Gooney Bird series, and The Giver quartet: Gathering Blue, Messenger, and Son. This fall, The Giver was adapted into a feature film starring Jeff Bridges.
Sean Astin is an actor, director, voice artist, and producer best known for his roles as Samwise Gamgee in the Lord of the Rings trilogy, the title character in Rudy, and Mikey Walsh in The Goonies. Astin has appeared in many films, including Like Father Like Son, The War of the Roses, Encino Man, Courage Under Fire, and more recently in 50 First Dates, Click, Mom’s Night Out, The Boys of Abu Ghraib, Extraction, The Freemason, and many others. He directed and co-produced, with his wife, Christine Astin, the short film Kangaroo Court, which was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Live Action Short Film. He is currently the voice of Raphael in the new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles animated series on Nickelodeon and the voice of the title character in the upcoming animated feature Ribbit. Astin also currently appears on FX’s The Strain, based on Guillermo del Toro’s trilogy of novels. Sean and Christine Astin are at work on a feature length film based on Lois Lowry’s novel Number the Stars.
Lauren Oliver is the author of the New York Times-bestselling young adult novels Before I Fall and Panic, as well as the Delirium trilogy – Delirium, Pandemonium, and Requiem – which have been translated into more than 30 languages and are international bestsellers. She is also the author of two novels for middle-grade readers, The Spindlers and Liesl & Po, the latter of which was an E.B. White Read-Aloud Award nominee. Her newest book, Rooms, a novel for adults, was published in September 2014. A graduate of the University of Chicago and NYU’s MFA program, Oliver has worked in publishing and is the co-founder of the boutique literary development company Paper Lantern Lit.