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Sally Gardner - Author

About the Author

Sally Gardner is an award-winning novelist from London. Her books have been translated into 22 languages and have sold more than one million copies in the UK.

Her historical novel for older readers, I, Coriander, won the Smarties Children's Book Prize in 2005. Two thrillers both set at the time of the French Revolution, The Red Necklace and The Silver Blade, which was shortlisted for the Guardian Children's Fiction Prize in 2009, followed.  Actor Dominic West (The Wire) has bought the film rights to both titles.

Her YA novel, The Double Shadow, was published in 2011 to critical acclaim. Sally Gardner's stories for middle readers include Lucy Willow and the popular Magical Children series of six titles: The Strongest Girl in the World, The Invisible Boy, The Boy with Magic Numbers, The Smallest Girl in the World, The Boy with the Lightning Feet, and The Boy who could Fly, which are also available as audio books. She has also written and illustrated picture books including The Fairy Catalogue, The Glass Heart, The Book of Princesses and Playtime Rhymes. Sally Gardner continues to be an avid spokesperson for dyslexia, working to change the way it is perceived by society. She is dyslexic and argues that it is not a disability, but a gift.

If you'd love to know more about Sally, click here to download a more detailed biography and Q&A.

To see a video of Sally talking about her book Fairy Shopping - CLICK HERE

Or watch a video of her talking about The Silver Blade:

 

Featured books by Sally Gardner

My Side of the Diamond

My Side of the Diamond

YA readers

Author: Sally Gardner Format: Paperback Release Date: 27/09/2017

Jazmin has been shunned ever since her best friend Becky disappeared. But Becky didn't just disappear - she jumped off a tall building and seemingly never reached the ground. It was as if she simply vanished into thin air. Did Jazmin have something to do with her disappearance? Or was it more to do with Icarus, so beguiling and strangely ever youthful, with whom Becky became suddenly besotted . . . With detailed and intriguing black and white illustrations throughout.

ebook of the month
The Vanishing of Billy Buckle The Detective Agency's Third Case

The Vanishing of Billy Buckle The Detective Agency's Third Case

7+ readers

Author: Sally Gardner Format: Paperback Release Date: 05/12/2013

Spot on the Fishcake! The famous fairy detective agency, Wings & Co, has a problem. Really quite a big problem. Well, a few of them actually. There's the missing giant, Billy Buckle, who has vanished without a trace, and left his giant daughter with the detectives. There's a surprise visit to the seaside, which uncovers a murder and a stolen diamond. And then there's that tricky business of the TV talent show. Squat on a squid, this is Emily, Buster and Fidget's most complicated case yet.

ebook of the month

Other books by Sally Gardner

The Wind in the Wall

The Wind in the Wall

Author: Sally Gardner Format: Hardback Release Date: 19/09/2019

'I have no idea how long I have been incarcerated in these ancient walls . . . Let me explain how I find myself in this predicament . . .' Set in the hot houses of a stately home in eighteenth century England, a gardener falls from grace when the Duke sets him the impossible task of growing prize pineapples fit to show off in high society. The gardener's star falls further when he is replaced by Mr Amicus, a pineapple 'specialist', whom he believes to be a charlatan and a trickster - but nevertheless miraculously produces fruit to delight the Duke. Determined to uncover Mr Amicus's tricks, the gardener sneaks into the pineapple house to uncover the mysterious shrouded birdcage Mr Amicus carries with him. And what he finds changes his life for ever . . . A cautionary tale with echoes of myth and fairy tale, this bewitching fable will make you careful what you wish for.

Mr Tiger, Betsy and the Sea Dragon

Mr Tiger, Betsy and the Sea Dragon

Author: Sally Gardner Format: Hardback Release Date: 02/05/2019

The mysterious Mr Tiger and the inquisitive Betsy K. Glory set off on their second adventure, from bestselling author Sally Gardner, sumptuously illustrated by Nick Maland. Crumble cakes! A red rogue wind is blowing and a wicked pirate captain and his crew are marauding the seven seas near the island left off the map of the world. A rare egg has gone missing and a very unhappy sea dragon wants it back. A pirate ship, the Kettle Black, is anchored in a secret cove off the island left off the map of the world. Betsy and her mum, Myrtle the mermaid, must dive deep beneath the waves, while Alfonso Glory and Mr Tiger fly high above the clouds in a hot air balloon... It's time for Mr Tiger, Betsy and the Gongalongs to set off on their second adventure... The hardback edition of this book is printed in blue ink in Dyslexie, a font specially designed to make reading easier - and more fun. Sally is the founder of NUword, which champions positive debate about dyslexia.

Mr Tiger, Betsy and the Blue Moon

Mr Tiger, Betsy and the Blue Moon

Author: Sally Gardner Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 04/04/2019

A 2018 Times Book of the Year. An enchanting fairytale about Mr Tiger, and his troupe of acrobats, Betsy K Glory, the daughter of a mermaid and an ice cream maker, from bestselling author Sally Gardner and illustrated by Nick Maland. 'Tigers have their secrets and their whiskers, their tails and their tales.' Sally Gardner's enchanting new series, illustrated by Nick Maland, is a fairytale full of traditional ingredients. When Betsy K Glory, the daughter of a mermaid and an ice cream maker, meets the mysterious Mr Tiger they have a giant challenge: a moon to turn blue, berries to collect and wishable-delicious ice cream to create. The sort that makes wishes come true. With Mr Tiger and his troupe of Gongalong circus acrobats, a toad under a spell, a lonely giant, and Mum and Dad, Betsy sets off on her quest. The hardback edition of this book is printed in blue ink in Dyslexie, a font specially designed to make reading easier - and more fun. Sally is the founder of NuWord, which champions positive debate about dyslexia. Mr Tiger, Betsy and the Blue Moon made the 2018 Books of the Year round-ups in The Times, the Telegraph, Evening Standard, the Scotsman and Big Issue.

Mr Tiger, Betsy and the Blue Moon

Mr Tiger, Betsy and the Blue Moon

Author: Sally Gardner Format: eBook Release Date: 04/10/2018

An enchanting fairytale about Mr Tiger, and his troupe of acrobats, Betsy K. Glory, the daughter of a mermaid and an ice-cream maker, from bestselling author Sally Gardner and illustrated by Nick Maland. 'Tigers have their secrets and their whiskers, their tails and their tales.' Sally Gardner's enchanting new series, illustrated by Nick Maland, is a fairy tale full of traditional ingredients. When Betsy K. Glory, the daughter of a mermaid and an ice-cream maker, meets the mysterious Mr Tiger they have a giant challenge: a moon to turn blue, berries to collect and wishable-delicious ice-cream to create. The sort that makes wishes come true. With Mr Tiger and his troupe of Gongalong circus acrobats, a toad under a spell, a lonely giant, and Mum and Dad, Betsy sets off on her quest. This book will be printed in blue ink in Dyslexie, a font specially designed to make reading easier - and more fun. Sally is the founder of NuWord, which champions positive debate about dyslexia.

Mr Tiger, Betsy and the Blue Moon

Mr Tiger, Betsy and the Blue Moon

Author: Sally Gardner Format: Hardback Release Date: 04/10/2018

A 2018 Times Book of the Year. An enchanting fairytale about Mr Tiger, and his troupe of acrobats, Betsy K Glory, the daughter of a mermaid and an ice cream maker, from bestselling author Sally Gardner and illustrated by Nick Maland. 'Tigers have their secrets and their whiskers, their tails and their tales.' Sally Gardner's enchanting new series, illustrated by Nick Maland, is a fairytale full of traditional ingredients. When Betsy K Glory, the daughter of a mermaid and an ice cream maker, meets the mysterious Mr Tiger they have a giant challenge: a moon to turn blue, berries to collect and wishable-delicious ice cream to create. The sort that makes wishes come true. With Mr Tiger and his troupe of Gongalong circus acrobats, a toad under a spell, a lonely giant, and Mum and Dad, Betsy sets off on her quest. The hardback edition of this book is printed in blue ink in Dyslexie, a font specially designed to make reading easier - and more fun. Sally is the founder of NuWord, which champions positive debate about dyslexia. Mr Tiger, Betsy and the Blue Moon made the 2018 Books of the Year round-ups in The Times, the Telegraph, Evening Standard, the Scotsman and Big Issue.

B is for Bear

B is for Bear

Author: Sally Gardner Format: Hardback Release Date: 25/01/2018

My Side of the Diamond

My Side of the Diamond

Author: Sally Gardner Format: eBook Release Date: 05/10/2017

An extraordinary tale about the search for love from the acclaimed Costa and Carnegie Award winning novelist Sally Gardner.Jazmin has been shunned ever since her best friend Becky disappeared. But Becky didn't just disappear - she jumped off a tall building and seemingly never reached the ground. It was as if she simply vanished into thin air. Did Jazmin have something to do with her disappearance? Or was it more to do with Icarus, so beguiling and strangely ever youthful, with whom Becky became suddenly besotted . . .With detailed and intriguing black and white illustrations throughout.

My Side of the Diamond

My Side of the Diamond

YA readers

Author: Sally Gardner Format: Paperback Release Date: 27/09/2017

Jazmin has been shunned ever since her best friend Becky disappeared. But Becky didn't just disappear - she jumped off a tall building and seemingly never reached the ground. It was as if she simply vanished into thin air. Did Jazmin have something to do with her disappearance? Or was it more to do with Icarus, so beguiling and strangely ever youthful, with whom Becky became suddenly besotted . . . With detailed and intriguing black and white illustrations throughout.

ebook of the month
The Fairy Detective Agency: The Flying Carpet Thief

The Fairy Detective Agency: The Flying Carpet Thief

Author: Sally Gardner Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 28/07/2016

'Agatha Christie for kids' - a brand new mystery in the detective agency series brimming with mystery and magic by million-copy-selling author, Sally Gardner. The detectives at Wings and Co are in a bit of bother. There is a lost leprechaun on the loose and carpets are flying all over the village of Podgy Bottom, as if by magic. Oh, and worst of all, Fidget the cat has vanished on VERY URGENT business. It looks like a tricky case for our fairy detectives . . .

The Rollercoaster Case

The Rollercoaster Case

Author: Sally Gardner Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 14/07/2016

'Agatha Christie for kids' - the third in a detective agency series brimming with mystery and magic by million-copy-selling author, Sally Gardner, and illustrated by acclaimed artist, David Roberts. The famous detective agency, Wings & Co, has a problem. Really quite a big problem. Well, a few of them actually. There's the missing giant, Billy Buckle, who has vanished without a trace, and left his giant daughter with the detectives. There's a surprise visit to the seaside, which uncovers a murder and a stolen diamond. And then there's that tricky business of the TV talent show. Squat on a squid, this is Emily, Buster and Fidget's most complicated case yet! Includes Wings and Co detective case notes, character profiles and clues. Previously published under the title THE VANISHING OF BILLY BUCKLE.

The Door That Led to Where

The Door That Led to Where

Author: Sally Gardner Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 06/08/2015

AJ Flynn has just failed all but one of his GCSEs, and his future is looking far from rosy. So when he is offered a junior position at a London law firm he hopes his life is about to change - but he could never have imagined by how much. Tidying up the archive one day, AJ finds an old key, mysteriously labelled with his name and date of birth - and he becomes determined to find the door that fits the key. And so begins an amazing journey to a very real and tangible past - 1830, to be precise - where the streets of modern Clerkenwell are replaced with cobbles and carts, and the law can be twisted to suit a villain's means. Although life in 1830 is cheap, AJ and his friends quickly find that their own lives have much more value. They've gone from sad youth statistics to young men with purpose - and at the heart of everything lies a crime that only they can solve. But with enemies all around, can they unravel the mysteries of the past, before it unravels them? A fast-paced mystery novel by one of the country's finest writers, THE DOOR THAT LED TO WHERE will delight, surprise and mesmerise all those who read it.

I, Coriander

I, Coriander

Author: Sally Gardner Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 06/08/2015

The story is told by Coriander, daughter of a silk merchant in 1650s London. Her idyllic childhood ends when her mother dies and her father goes away, leaving Coriander with her stepmother, a widow who is in cahoots with a fundamentalist Puritan preacher. She is shut away in a chest and left to die, but emerges into the fairy world from which her mother came, and where time has no meaning. When she returns, charged with a task that will transform her life, she is seventeen. This is a book filled with enchantments -- a pair of silver shoes, a fairy shadow, a prince transformed into a fox - that contrast with the heartbreaking loss and cruelty of Coriander's life in the real world. With its brilliantly realized setting of old London Bridge, and underpinned by the conflict between Royalists and Puritans, it is a terrific page turner, involving kidnapping, murder and romance, and an abundance of vivid characters.

Maggot Moon Special Edition

Maggot Moon Special Edition

Author: Sally Gardner Format: Hardback Release Date: 07/11/2013

A beautiful limited edition of Sally Gardner's Costa Prize winning novel A starkly original and heartbreaking tale of friendship and rebellion Winner of the Carnegie Medal and a 2012 Costa Award winner. Narrated against the backdrop of a ruthless regime determined to beat its enemies in the race to the moon, MAGGOT MOON is the stunning new novel from award-winning author Sally Gardner. When his best friend Hector is suddenly taken away, Standish Treadwell realises that it is up to him, his grandfather and a small band of rebels to confront and defeat the ever-present oppressive forces of the Motherland. Utterly original and stunning, it is impossible not to be moved by MAGGOT MOON's powerful story and the unforgettable heroism of Standish.

Magical Children Complete eBook Collection

Magical Children Complete eBook Collection

Author: Sally Gardner Format: eBook Release Date: 03/10/2013

A complete collection of all 6 books in the Magical Children series, from bestselling, award-winning author Sally Gardner.The collection includes:The Boy Who Could FlyThe Boy With The Lightning FeetThe Boy With The Magic NumbersThe Invisible BoyThe Smallest Girl EverThe Strongest Girl In The World

Magical Children: The Invisible Boy

Magical Children: The Invisible Boy

Author: Sally Gardner Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 20/06/2013

When his parents are lost in space, Sam is left, heartbroken, in the care of the horrible Hilda Hardbottom. Then he finds a tiny spaceship in the cabbage patch and meets a little alien called Splodge. How Splodge makes him invisible, and how Sam uses his new talent in his darkest hour, makes a touching and extremely funny story with lovely memorable characters.

Magical Children: The Smallest Girl Ever

Magical Children: The Smallest Girl Ever

Author: Sally Gardner Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 20/06/2013

Ruby Genie is an orphan. Everyone expects her to have the same fantastic magical powers as her famous parents did, but Ruby can't do any magic at all - or so she thinks. and feels a complete failure. Then she begins to get smaller ...and smaller ...and smaller. With a cast of unforgettable characters such as the self-important magician the Great Alfonso, and Aunt Hat the kindly lady conjuror who is hopeless at doing tricks, this wonderful story is full of adventure and shows how a little girl who is so tiny that she fits into a handbag can still be clever and brave and find people to love and value her. An utterly charming story, full of feeling, and very funny. Sally's own delightful line drawings all the way through make it a very attractive package.

Magical Children: The Strongest Girl In The World

Magical Children: The Strongest Girl In The World

Author: Sally Gardner Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 20/06/2013

Josie Jenkins, aged eight and three quarters, can do a few tricks, but she astonishes herself and everyone else when she finds she can lift a table, a car and even a bus with no effort at all. Josie becomes famous, and Mr Two Suit sweeps in with a contract and swoops the whole family off to New York. How Josie copes with fame and fortune, and with the loss of it when she wakes up one day to find she can't do her trick any more, makes a story of enormous charm, with a tiny, modest and sensible heroine you have to cheer for. Entrancing drawings on every page make this a really special book.

The Boy Who Could Fly

The Boy Who Could Fly

Author: Sally Gardner Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 20/06/2013

One day the Fat Fairy turns up at Thomas Top's house to grant him a birthday wish. Thomas can't think what to ask for, so he wishes he could fly. That's how Thomas goes from being just an ordinary boy whom no one notices to being the most popular boy in the school. But it makes him sad that grown-ups can't see the wonderful things he can do. His flying gets him suspended from school, and that makes life at home much worse, because his dad gets so cross and it makes his mum miserable. But then the Fat Fairy turns up again, and with help from her and Thomas's new friend Mr Vinnie, a retired painter and decorator who has been flying since he was Thomas's age, everything changes. This is an enchanting story in which an unconfident child discovers a special gift that brings him joy and heartache. The magic of the words, the humour and poignancy of the story and the wonderful characters, are all enhanced by the author's own delightful drawings.

The Red Necklace

The Red Necklace

Author: Sally Gardner Format: Hardback Release Date: 01/01/2007

The story of a remarkable boy called Yann Margoza; Tetu the dwarf, his friend and mentor; Sido, unloved daughter of a foolish Marquis; and Count Kalliovski, Grand Master of a secret society, who has half the aristocracy in thrall to him, and wants Yann dead. Yann is spirited away to London but three years later, when Paris is gripped by the bloody horrors of the Revolution, he returns, charged with two missions: to find out Kalliovski's darkest deeds and to save Sido from the guillotine. With a tangle of secrets, a thread of magic and a touch of humour, the follies of the aristocracy and the sufferings of ordinary people are unfolded as their lives move relentlessly towards the tragic and horrific days of the Terror. THE RED NECKLACE is not only a tremendous adventure story but a vibrant and passionate picture of Paris in turmoil and of a large cast of memorable characters.

I, Coriander

I, Coriander

Author: Sally Gardner Format: eBook Release Date: 27/06/2006

I looked back into the room. The floor had become a sea and my parents' bed a ship, seen from a great distance. I could hear their voices calling me from far away. It lasted a minute or less. Maybe I dreamed it. Maybe I didn't. It was an image that came to haunt me, and I have often wondered what would have happened if I had done as I was told and left the silver shoes alone. Would everything then have been all right?It is the night, and I have lit the first of seven candles to write my story by. My name is Coriander Hobie, and I have a great many things to tellof silver shoes that tempted me and an alligator most rare; of London, the home of my childhood, and another, stranger land, one that I thought only existed in dreams; and of an ebony box whose treasure only now am I beginning to understand. The box was once my mother's, but its secrets were meant for me.This being my story and a fairy tale besides, I will start once upon a time. . .

I, Coriander

I, Coriander

Author: Sally Gardner Format: Hardback Release Date: 04/08/2005

The story is told by Coriander, daughter of a silk merchant in 1650s London. Her idyllic childhood ends when her mother dies and her father goes away, leaving Coriander with her stepmother, a widow who is in cahoots with a fundamentalist Puritan preacher. She is shut away in a chest and left to die, but emerges into the fairy world from which her mother came, and where time has no meaning. When she returns, charged with a task that will transform her life, she is seventeen. This is a book filled with enchantments -- a pair of silver shoes, a fairy shadow, a prince transformed into a fox - that contrast with the heartbreaking loss and cruelty of Coriander's life in the real world. With its brilliantly realized setting of old London Bridge, and underpinned by the conflict between Royalists and Puritans, it is a terrific page turner, involving kidnapping, murder and romance, and an abundance of vivid characters. Coriander is a heroine to love. Her story will establish Sally Gardner as a children's writer of boundless imagination and originality.

Playtime Rhymes

Playtime Rhymes

Author: Sally Gardner Format: Mixed media product Release Date: 12/05/2005

37 familiar rhymes, songs and games, ranging from the traditional Ring-a-Ring o' Roses to Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear. The CD contains ALL the songs, rhymes and games from the book PLAYTIME RHYMES performed by Angela Dijksman and Heather Chivers..

Magical Children 3 books in 1

Magical Children 3 books in 1

Author: Sally Gardner Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 18/11/2004

Each of the Magical Children stories is about a child with a special gift. In THE INVISIBLE BOY, Sam is left in the care of the horrible Hilda Hardbottom when his parents go missing on a trip to the moon, and makes friends with a little alien calls Splodge who shows him how to become invisible. THE STRONGEST GIRL IN THE WORLD is about Josie Jenkins, aged 8, who suddenly finds that she can lift up a double decker bus with no effort at all, and learns to live with the vicissitudes of fame and fortune. And THE BOY WHO COULD FLY is Thomas Top, who is granted a birthday wish by the Fat Fairy and finds that his new talent has a wonderful effect on his whole life. Funny, poignant, and charmingly packaged with the author's own drawings, these stories by the uniquely talented Sally Gardner have already proved immensely popular, and this collection is a lovely way to introduce them to a whole new readership.

Mummy Don't Go Out Tonight

Mummy Don't Go Out Tonight

Author: Sally Gardner Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 06/10/2003

A little girl is worried that her mother is going out for the evening and her worries soon take on an epic scale. Maybe her mother will be kidnapped, or eaten by giants, or even worse, maybe her mother will run away and not come back...But her mother is going to go out and have fun and soon the little girl is finding distraction in the form of a very playful babysitter. When the girl's mother returns at the end of the evening both parent and child have had a lovely time.

Boolar's Big Day Out

Boolar's Big Day Out

Author: Sally Gardner Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 15/09/2003

Boolar has his big chance of fame when he lands himself the plum role of Tom Thumb in the Puppet Theatre playing in the park. But Boolar's performance nerves get the better of him and an ill-fated romance mean that things don't turn out quite as Boolar would like. Despite this Boolar's sense of his own importance cause a rift between him and the mis-matched family of dolls. Can Boolar survive the pit-falls of stardom as well as negotiate the troubled area of romance and still stay true to himelf and his friends? Fortunately for him his family of dolls and the wonderful Mr and Mrs Mouse love him dearly and are on hand to offer help and advice just when Boolar needs it the most. In this fantastic book, and the series as a whole, Sally Gardner has brought all of life's mysterious and myriad adventures to play. Her characters are brilliant little microcosms of the human race and their stories are as touching as any can be.

The Boy Who Could Fly

The Boy Who Could Fly

Author: Sally Gardner Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/10/2001

One day the Fat Fairy turns up at Thomas Top's house to grant him a birthday wish. Thomas can't think what to ask for, so he wishes he could fly. That's how Thomas goes from being just an ordinary boy whom no one notices to being the most popular boy in the school. But it makes him sad that grown-ups can't see the wonderful things he can do. His flying gets him suspended from school, and that makes life at home much worse, because his dad gets so cross and it makes his mum miserable. But then the Fat Fairy turns up again, and with help from her and Thomas's new friend Mr Vinnie, a retired painter and decorator who has been flying since he was Thomas's age, everything changes. This is an enchanting story in which an unconfident child discovers a special gift that brings him joy and heartache. The magic of the words, the humour and poignancy of the story and the wonderful characters, are all enhanced by the author's own delightful drawings.

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