Isabel was born in Lisbon in 1974.
When she was a child, she wanted to be a journalist, an archaeologist or a pediatrician. She didn’t end up being any of those things, but she does love what she does.
“For me, writing is like digging: you always find something – sometimes worms, sometimes water, sometimes stones, roots, tunnels… a lost shoe.
I like writing because I almost always find something unexpected. And I like reading for the same reason: someone dug and dug and dug and found something that then they show us in words”.
She studied at the Lisbon College of Fine Arts, before working as a creative in children’s communication. Later, together with a group of friends, she founded the publisher Planeta Tangerina.
A number of her books have won prizes or been distinguished by institutions connected to the world of children’s books: White Ravens Catalogue, Andersen Prize, Banco del Libro, Portuguese Society of Authors (2015), Gustav-Heinemann Friedenspreis (2017), Deutscher Jugendliteraturpreis (2017). She received nominations to the ALMA – Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award in 2022 and 2023.
Many of her books have been published in other countries all over the world (France, Brazil, Korea, United Kingdom, Italy, Spain, Holland…).