New York Times bestselling author Megan Shepherd’s first novel, The Madman’s Daughter (HarperCollins, 2013), was a Kids’ Indie Next List selection from the American Booksellers Association, won the 2013 North Carolina Young Adult Book Award, and received a starred review from School Library Journal. It was followed by two more books in the series, Her Dark Curiosity and A Cold Legacy, and was optioned for film by Paramount Pictures. Megan’s second young adult series, The Cage (HarperCollins, 2015), is a New York Times bestselling title, and is followed by The Hunt and The Gauntlet. Her next young adult series, Grim Lovelies (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2018) is forthcoming.
Megan’s debut middle grade title, The Secret Horses of Briar Hill (Random House, 2016), received starred reviews from Kirkus, Booklist, and Shelf Awareness, and was written about in Time magazine and The Wall Street Journal. Her shorter works include the stories “Hide-and-Seek” in the young adult horror anthology Slasher Girls and Monster Boys (Penguin, 2015) and "Lady Firebrand" in the young adult historical fiction anthology The Radical Element (Candlewick, 2018).
“Born” into the book world, Megan grew up in her family’s independent bookstore in the Blue Ridge Mountains. Interested in foreign languages and travel, she earned a degree in International Studies from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and later joined the US Peace Corps, where she spent two years living and working in a small village in Senegal. There, she partnered with a local elementary school to transcribe oral folk tales into an illustrated picture book to distribute to students. Though she has always been an avid reader, this project first sparked her interest in telling her own stories.
Megan frequently speaks to schools and libraries and has taught for UNCA’s Great Smokies Writing Program, the Society for Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, and the NC Writers’ Network. In previous lives, she worked for a book publisher, an environmental nonprofit, as a raft guide, a nanny, and a park ranger in Montana.
When she is not writing, she can usually be found daydreaming in cafes, hiking in the mountains, binge-watching WestWorld and Game of Thrones, and gardening at her 125-year-old farm in the mountains of Western North Carolina, which she and her husband share with several hives of bees, five chickens, two cats, an especially scruffy dog, and a new baby.
She is represented by Josh Adams of Adams Literary.