Author Theodore Taylor was born in Statesville, North Carolina on June 23, 1921. At the age of seventeen, he became a copyboy at the Washington, D. C. Daily News and was writing radio network sports for NBC in New York two years later. During World War II, he joined the merchant marines and earned a commission as an ensign in the U. S. Navy. He was recalled to active duty during the Korean War. In 1955, he became a press agent for Paramount Pictures and later became a story editor and an associate producer. He has written over fifty fiction and non-fiction books for young adults and adults. He has received numerous awards for his works including the Lewis Carroll Shelf Award for The Cay, the 1992 Edgar Allen Poe Award for Best Young Adult Mystery for The Weirdo, and the 1996 Scott O'Dell Award for historical fiction for The Bomb. He died on October 26, 2006.