Jenny Han: Biography

Jenny Han

Jenny Han is an American author of books for children and young adults. She was born in Richmond, Virginia where she also spent all of her childhood and adolescence along with her parents and younger sister. She graduated from the University of North Carolina and then went on to achieve an MFA in Creative Writing from the New School.

Jenny Han finished the first draft of her first novel whilst still at University. This book, Shug, remains one of her most well-known titles to this day and follows the story of a twelve-year-old girl as she negotiates the difficulties of junior high school. She then went on to write a New York Times bestselling coming-of-age trilogy.

Some of the most influential books that she read in her own childhood and adolescence were I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith, The Hundred Dresses by Eleanor Estes, Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro and Daphne du Maurier’s Rebecca. These books have influenced her own children’s and young adult novels. Her own writing habits as a teenager also inspired the kind of books that she has written for young adults. Her novel, To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before, was inspired by the fact that Han herself used to write love letters to the boys that she liked when she herself was a teenager. She frequently draws on her own experiences to feed her inspiration for the characters in her books.

Jenny Han now lives in Brooklyn, New York, where she writes all of her new novels. She claims that she can write almost anywhere; on trains, in cafes and in other people’s homes.