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Our author champion

HI RES Frances Hardinge 055

Frances Hardinge was brought up in a sequence of small, sinister English villages, and spent a number of formative years living in a Gothic-looking, mouse-infested hilltop house in Kent. She studied English Language and Literature at Oxford, fell in love with the city's crazed archaic beauty, and lived there for many years.

Whilst working full time as a technical author for a software company she started writing her first children's novel, "Fly by Night", and was with difficulty persuaded by a good friend to submit the manuscript to Macmillan.  "Fly by Night" went on to win the Branford Boase Award, and was also shortlisted for the Guardian Children's Fiction Award. Her subsequent books, "Verdigris Deep," "Gullstruck Island", "Twilight Robbery", "A Face Like Glass", "Cuckoo Song" and "The Lie Tree" are also aimed at children and young adults.

Frances is seldom seen without her hat and is addicted to volcanoes.

 Being able to write and find the confidence to write is a really powerful thing. It is about putting your unique view out in the world. I could not have dedicated my life to writing if it was not fun.



We are delighted to say that  Frances Hardinge’s book The Lie Tree has been named Costa Book of the Year. It is just the second time a children’s book has won the prestigious prize since it launched in 1985.

Frances will be attending the Oxfordshire Gaining Momentum literacy festival in June. 


The National Literacy Trust is a registered charity no. 1116260 and a company limited by guarantee no. 5836486 registered in England and Wales and a registered charity in Scotland no. SC042944.
Registered address: 68 South Lambeth Road, London SW8 1RL.