Besides being a children’s book author, Mike Winerip is a Pulitzer Prize winning reporter for the New York Times. In his twenty-five years with the Times, he has done a number of assignments, including investigative reporter, magazine staff writer, national political correspondent based in Ohio, national education columnist, deputy metro editor, suburban columnist, and parenting columnist.

His children’s novels about a middle school newspaper—Adam Canfield of the Slash, Adam Canfield Watch Your Back!, and Adam Canfield: The Last Reporter (all Candlewick)—draw on many of the newspaper stories he actually covered as a reporter. Like Adam Canfield, he’s investigated corrupt principals and crazy zoning board officials who wanted to tear down children’s basketball hoops. Like Phoebe, he wrote about a smile contest sponsored by a dental association (in Louisville, Kentucky) where kids ate tons of candy to give themselves energy so they could smile for four straight hours.

Before the Times, he worked at three smaller papers, the Miami Herald, Rochester Times-Union and Louisville Courier-Journal, where he covered Appalachia out of a one-man bureau in Hazard, Kentucky. His work as a reporter has taken him into some of the poorest housing projects in America, the worst mental institution in Mexico, major corporate board rooms, and the White House. He led a team of reporters that won the 2001 Pulitzer in national reporting for the series, “How Race is Lived in America.” He was a finalist for the Pulitzer in 2000 for his expose in the New York Times magazine on New York state’s mental health system.

His adult nonfiction book, 9 Highland Road (Pantheon), about community mental health, was an American Library Association book of the year and a finalist for the PEN award in nonfiction. He is a product of the Quincy, Massachusetts, public schools, a graduate of Harvard, and lives in Lido Beach, NY, with his wife and four children.

Contact Mike Winerip by email at