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Nancy Farmer, who grew up in a hotel on the Arizona/Mexico border, served in the Peace Corps in India, was an insect pathology technician in Africa, and taught chemistry before becoming a writer. Her short stories and books for children have won several awards including the 1995 Newbery Award Honor Book and the Golden Kite Award Honor Book. She is winner of the 2002 National Book Award for Young People's Literature for her most recent book "The House of the Scorpion" (Atheneum, 2002). Farmer lives in Menlo Park, Calif.