Christina Soontornvat (she/her)

“When I was a child I was taught that only “certain types” of people could become authors. I thought that writing was a talent, and you either had it or you didn’t. When I speak to students, I try to break down this myth. I want them to leave my presentation knowing that writing is a craft and with practice, they can become anything they want, including a writer. I want them to know their stories are worthy of being told.”


Christina Soontornvat is the award-winning author of over a dozen books for children of all ages. Her picture books include The Ramble Shamble Children, illustrated by Caldecott Honoree Lauren Castillo, and To Change a Planet, illustrated by Rahele Jomepour Belle. She is the author of the beloved Diary of an Ice Princess chapter book series and the bestselling graphic novel, The Tryout, illustrated by Joanna Cacao. Christina has received three Newbery Honor awards for her books for middle grade readers, and her nonfiction account of the Thai Cave Rescue, All Thirteen, was also awarded the Kirkus Prize for Young People’s Literature. She travels all over the world to speak to children, writers, and educators about her love of reading and writing.

Christina grew up behind the counter of her parents’ Thai restaurant in a small Texas town with her nose stuck in a book. She is very proud of both her Thai and her Texan roots and makes regular trips to both Weatherford and Bangkok to see her beloved family members (and eat lots and lots of Thai food!). In addition to being an author, Christina holds a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering and a master’s degree in Science Education. She spent a decade working in the science museum field, where she designed programs and exhibits to get kids excited about science. She is passionate about STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) and loves learning new things. She currently lives in Austin, Texas with her husband and two daughters.

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