Theresa Tomlinson was born in Sussex. The daughter of a vicar, she spent her early childhood in various places in the north of England. As a child she had no interest in writing, but she loved reading. Her main interest was drawing and painting. She attended Hull College of Art, and later trained as a teacher at Hull College of Education. She taught as an infant teacher for five years
Theresa and her husband live in Whitby, North Yorkshire, where Theresa spent her childhood. Over the years she has acquired an outstanding reputation for her historical novels, particularly those, like Wolf Girl, set on the north-east coast of England.
Shortlisted twice for the Carnegie Medal and for the Sheffield Children's Book Award, Theresa takes a keen interest in the area where she lives. Recent visits to Turkey have fuelled her enthusiasm for the ancient mythology of that part of the world. Her scrupulous research has resulted in two epic stories, The Moon Riders and Voyage of the Snake Lady.