Born and raised in New York City, Avi was educated in local schools before going to the Midwest to complete his education. He is part of a family of writers extending back into the nineteenth century. It was his twin sister—also a writer—who gave him the name Avi, because she was unable or unwilling to use the name his parents had given him—Edward.
Avi flunked out of the first high school he attended and was sent to a private school. At the end of his second year, the English teacher informed his parents that he was “the worst student he’d ever had.” Tutoring was required. It was that tutor who got him interested in writing.
At first, Avi chose to write for the theater. Not until he had children of his own did he turn to writing for young people. Avi’s first book, Things That Sometimes Happen, was published in 1970. Since then Avi has published seventy-four books, the latest being Catch you Later, Traitor.
Avi lives in Clark, Colorado, in a log house high in the Rocky Mountains, with his wife, Linda, who is an inventor. No cell phones. No mail delivery. Just a beautiful, quiet place.