Check Out These
21 Books You’ve Been Meaning to Read
See the List

Elisa Carbone

Photo of Elisa Carbone

Photo: © Sharon Natoli

About the Author

“Novels are teaching tools. While the imagination is entertained, the brain absorbs all sorts of information about human nature, history, or how to make guacamole. That’s the fun of writing—I get to teach and entertain at the same time.”—Elisa Carbone

Elisa Carbone’s historical novel Stealing Freedom was named an ALA Best Book for Young Adults.


Elisa Carbone used to teach in the Speech Communications department at the University of Maryland, but now she is enjoying being a full-time writer and part-time rock climber, windsurfer, and white-water kayaker. “The physical exertion of the sports balances out the mental exertion of writing,” she says. She loves doing the research required to write historical fiction and is fascinated by the small details of everyday life in the past. Ms. Carbone’s “Sarah” books (Starting School with an Enemy and Sarah and the Naked Truth) have been praised for their accessibility to reluctant readers.


Born: January 2 in Washington, DC

Previous jobs: Taught in the Speech Communications department at the University of Maryland. Before that, I’d been a dance teacher and taught piano and guitar lessons.

Inspiration for writing: Things that make me laugh and fascinating stories from the past that have not yet been told.

Favorite foods: Baked potatoes (boring, huh?)

Favorite clothes to wear: Sweatpants with T-shirts in the summer and a sweater in the winter—and sandals all year round!

Favorite colors: Purple! I wear purple virtually every day, and even buy purple climbing ropes and paint my toenails purple.

Favorite books: Any book that makes me laugh or is beautifully written.


“Imaginatively and sensitively adapted from the historical records, this portrait will evoke admiration for the courage of both those who resisted slavery and those who endured it.”—Starred, Publishers Weekly

“This historical novel combines the appeal of exciting escape adventure with authentic details of the time and place. Carbone’s research is meticulous.”—Booklist

“The spunky ten-year-old heroine of Starting School with an Enemy is back, and she’s welcome.”—Kirkus Reviews

“This middle-grade novel belongs at the head of its class.”—Starred, Publishers Weekly

“Will keep even reluctant readers hooked until the end.”—School Library Journal

Sign me up for news about Elisa Carbone

Back to Top