Bunting went to school in Northern Ireland and grew up with storytelling. In Ireland, "There used to be Shanachies...the shanachie was a storyteller who went from house to house telling his tales of ghosts and fairies, of old Irish heroes and battles still to be won. Maybe I'm a bit of a Shanchie myself, telling stories to anyone who will listen". This storytelling began as an inspiration for Bunting and has continued with her work.
With over 250 titles, Eve Bunting has included diversity in her work. Every title focuses on a different issue. Smoky Night discusses racism and the Los Angeles riots with colorful illustrations. Fly Away Home illustrates a homeless father and son who live in an airport. Bunting has also addressed such topics as death, war, and troubled family life. Her writing speaks about important social issues with clarity and empowerment.
During her writing career, Bunting has won several awards for her books. She received the Golden Kite Award from the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators in 1976 for One More Flight. Other honors include the Southern California council on Literature for Children and Young People Award, PEN Los Angeles Center Literacy Award for Special Achievement in Children's Literature, and Southern California council on Literature for Children and Young People Award Excellence is a Series Award. Coffin on a Case won an Edgar Award for Best Juvenile from the Mystery Writers of America in 1993.
Eve Bunting has also received the Heal the World award from a school. A young reader wrote Bunting to notify her of the achievement. She said, "It is among of the most cherished honors I have ever received and the plaque hangs proudly above my desk."
David Díaz won the 1995 Caldecott Medal for illustrating Smoky Night, a picture book with text by Bunting.
In 2006, Bunting's book One Green Apple, illustrated by Ted Lewin, won the inaugural Arab American Book Award for books written for Children/ Young Adults. One Green Apple tells the story of a young girl who just immigrated to America from an Arab country and how she discovers that her differences are what makes her special.
Bunting is proud of her writing and how it affects children of all ages.