Mary Stolz was born on March 24, 1920, in Boston, Massachusetts. She went to school in New York City, and later lived on Florida’s Gulf Coast.
She was a writer from the time she was a teen, editing her school magazine. Ms. Stolz married at 18 and stopped writing to be a homemaker and raise her son, Bill. Shortly thereafter she began to experience severe pain, which grew to be so bad that she was confined to her home. Her doctor advised her to do something she enjoyed, so she wrote her first novel, To Tell Your Love, published in 1950.
Stolz’s illness eventually subsided but she continued writing. Two of her books, Belling the Tiger (1961) and The Noonday Friends (1965) received Newbery honors. The Edge of Next Year (1974) was a finalist for the National Book Award and was included on the Boston Globe/Horn Book Honor List. A Dog on Barkham Street is the story of how a boy deals with the neighborhood bully, and finally gets a dog of his own. The Bully of Barkham Street tells the same story, but instead through the eyes of the bully.
In 1982, Stolz was given a George G. Stone Recognition of Merit Award for her body of work. She died December 15, 2006.