Jonathan Stroud was born in Bedford, England and grew up in St. Albans. He always had a burning desire to write a full-length work of fiction which he would have wanted to read when he was younger, and so after graduating from York University he embarked on a publishing and writing career in the game book and non-fiction department at Walker Books. He moved to Kingfisher Publications to edit children's non-fiction, and for a time juggled working with writing; but Jonathan is now a full-time writer.
In May 1999, Jonathan burst onto the children’s book scene with his first novel, Buried Fire. This powerful and compelling read combines elements of fantasy and mythology in a contemporary setting. It is a pacey story that shows how the dark past lives on and can still have a vise-like hold on the present.
Jonathan’s second fantasy adventure, The Leap, was published in January 2001 as part of the new Definitions list. The Leap portrays the devastation of grief and the temptations and dangers of a world within a world as Charlie is devastated by the tragic accident up at the disused Mill Pool involving her best friend, Max. Refusing to believe Max is dead, she embarks on an emotional journey in her dreams. Soon her dream world becomes more important to her than anything else until this fantasy and real life begin to merge and give rise to strange events in the everyday world.
2003 saw the publication of a brand new novel, the first title of The Bartimeus Series called The Amulet of Samarkand, an enthralling new fantasy trilogy about a wickedly witty and thoroughly irresistible "djinni." Skillfully inventive in plot and structure and vividly atmospheric, this magical epic is Stroud at his best.