With a father in the Royal Canadian Air Force, Wendy Orr grew up in many different places, and went to eleven schools between nursery school and grade twelve. Today, Wendy lives in Australia with her husband and family. She was a compulsive reader and writer from an early age, and now writes for children, young adults and adults. Her books have been published in 25 countries and languages and have won awards including the CBC (Australian) Book of the Year, ALA Book for older readers, and the Israeli March of Books. Wendy also worked on the screenplay that turned her book Nim’s Island into a 2008 Hollywood feature film starring Jodie Foster, Abigail Breslin and Gerard Butler, and is hoping to see the production of Nim at Sea soon.
Facing the Mountain grew out of a love for mountains that started when she was living in Red Deer, Alberta and went to summer camp in the Rockies. Later, when she was twelve, she climbed Pikes Peak in Colorado with her father and sister, and will never forget the thrill of reaching the top. Raven in Facing the Mountain shares that thrill, although the rest of her story turned out to be much more difficult and dramatic than the hike that inspired it. What Wendy particularly loves about Raven is that she is just a normal kid, and has no idea how strong or brave she can be until she needs to. Wendy says, “One of the best things about fiction is that by living in other people’s skins, we start to realize that we, too, can be capable of extraordinary things.”