Get to know our 2019 local, national and international guest authors and illustrators.
Philip Ardagh (UK)
Philip Ardagh, whose very first Grubtown Tale won him the Roald Dahl Funny Prize, is author of numerous books including the award–winning Eddie Dickens adventures, currently available in over 30 languages. He wrote BBC radio’s first truly interactive radio drama, collaborated with Sir Paul McCartney on his first children’s book and is a ‘regularly irregular’ reviewer of children’s books for The Guardian.
AJ Betts (WA)
AJ Betts has written four novels for young adults. Her third novel, Zac & Mia, won the 2012 Text Prize, the 2014 SCBWI Crystal Kite Award, and the 2014 Ethel Turner prize for young adults at the New South Wales Premier’s Literary Awards. Her most recent novel Hive, the first in a duology, was published in 2018. Rogue will be published in 2019.
Cristy Burne (WA)
Cristy Burne grew up climbing trees, jumping drains, chasing runaway cows and inventing stories. She has a passion for learning through doing and loves to inspire creativity, daring and resilience in her readers. Cristy is a children’s author and science writer with degrees in Biotechnology and Science Communication. She has also worked as a science circus performer, garbage analyst, Santa’s pixie, and atom–smashing reporter.
Photographer: J Wyld
Dhonielle Clayton (US)
Dhonielle Clayton is an author, a former librarian, COO of the non-profit We Need Diverse Books, and co-founder of Cake Literary, a creative kitchen whipping up decadent - and decidedly diverse - literary confections for middle grade, young adult, and women's fiction readers. The dazzling New York Times bestseller, The Belles, was published last year to rave reviews. The sequel to the acclaimed The Belle, Everlasting Rose is out March 2019.
Sha’an d’Anthes (NSW)
Sha’an d’Anthes is a Sydney–based creative whose career as an artist/illustrator has seen her travel, show and sell work all over the world. Through her brand Furry Little Peach, Sha’an has established and rallied a large audience that grows steadily by the day. Her first picture book Zoom is an adventure story full of fun sounds and action that is a delight to read aloud.
Photographer: Rocket K Biblio
Jacqueline Harvey (NSW)
Jacqueline Harvey is the author of the popular Alice–Miranda and Clementine Rose series, which have sold over one million copies in Australia alone. Her books have received numerous short–listings and awards while her picture book, The Sound of the Sea, was a CBCA Honour Book. Jacqueline’s latest series, Kensy and Max, is an action–packed spy–adventure series for girls and boys.
Kylie Howarth (WA)
Kylie Howarth is an award–winning graphic designer and artist. She was raised in the country alongside her brother, dog, sheep, several orphaned kangaroos and one very cheeky echidna. She is the author and illustrator of children’s picture books Fish Jam, Chip and 1, 2, Pirate Stew. The Fish Kid series will be released through Walker Books in 2019.
Celine Kiernan (IRE)
Celine Kiernan is the critically acclaimed and multi–award–winning author of five novels for young people. Her ghost story, Into the Grey, was the first book to receive both the Children’s Books Ireland Book of the Year Award and Children’s Choice Award. She is best known for The Moorehawke Trilogy. The Wild Magic Trilogy is Celine’s first series for middle–grade readers. She lives in Ireland.
Karl Kruszelnicki (NSW)
Dr Karl Kruszelnicki is the Julius Sumner Miller Fellow at the University of Sydney. He is a qualified medical doctor, engineer, physicist and mathematician, and has been
named one of Australia's National Living Treasures. Dr Karl brings science to the airwaves every Thursday on the popular Science segment on the triple j Mornings show. He is gaining even more popularity with his newest podcast Shirtloads of Science and was the host of the Discovery Channel's ten-part TV series Dr Karl's Outrageous Acts of Science. His latest book is Vital Science.
Jeremy Lachlan (NSW)
Jeremy Lachlan has always been obsessed with big epic adventures in both literature and film—big, bad blockbusters like Star Wars, The Chronicles of Narnia, and Jurassic Park. Years of experience as a Sydney bookseller have paid off and Jeremy has delivered the blockbuster duology title the world has been waiting for! Book one Jane Doe and the Cradle of All Worlds is out now.
Photograph: Julia Loersch
Alison Lester (VIC)
Alison Lester’s picture books mix imaginary worlds with everyday life, encouraging children to believe in themselves and celebrate the differences that make them special. In 2012, Alison became Australia’s first Children’s Book Laureate, a position she shared with Boori Monty Pryor. Alison Lester’s books are favourites with children and adults around the world. Magic Beach, Imagine, My Farm and Noni the Pony are Australian classics
Zoë Norton Lodge (NSW)
Zoë Norton Lodge is a writer, actress and television presenter, known for her work on ABC TV’s The Checkout and the live, storytelling night and podcast, Story Club, as well as her collected short stories Almost Sincerely. Elizabella Meets Her Match is her debut children’s novel.
Georgia Norton Lodge (NSW)
By day, Georgia leads her graphic design team at an award–winning interior design and branding agency specialising in the hospitality industry. By night, she is an illustrator, married to her side project Georgia Draws a House where she delights people with deliveries of their hand–drawn homes. She’s also Zoë Norton Lodge’s younger sister— Elizabella Meets Her Match is their second book together.
Megan McDonald (US)
Megan McDonald is the award–winning author of the bestselling Judy Moody series as well as a spin–off series about Judy’s brother, Stink. Megan has written and published over 60 books for children in 22 languages. The hilarious Judy Moody adventures are largely inspired by her childhood memories of growing up with four older sisters. She lives in California.
Meg McKinlay (WA)
Meg McKinlay is the author of eighteen books ranging from picture books and young adult fiction through to poetry for adults. Her work includes the much–loved No Bears, Once Upon A Small Rhinoceros and the critically acclaimed A Single Stone. Her latest work is a picture book called Let Me Sleep Sheep and the middle–grade title Catch a Falling Star.
Lynette Noni (QLD)
Lynette Noni studied journalism, academic writing and human behaviour at university before venturing into the world of fiction. She is now a full-time writer and the bestselling author of the six-book young adult fantasy series, The Medoran Chronicles, as well as a second series called Whisper, which was acquired in the US by the editor of The Hunger Games. Lynette is currently the number one YA fiction author in Australia.
Neal Shusterman (US)
Award-winning author Neal Shusterman grew up in Brooklyn, New York, where he began writing at an early age. He is the author of many books for young adults. His latest novel Dry is written with his son Jarrod Shusterman. The third book in his Arc of a Scythe series, The Toll, will be released in 2019.
Michael Speechley (WA)
Michael Speechley is a high school art and design teacher from WA. He's keen to explore themes of consumerism and the environment in his stories in a funny and accessible way. The All New Must Have Orange 430 is his first picture book.
Matt Stanton (NSW)
Matt Stanton is a bestselling children’s author and illustrator. He is the co–creator of several bestselling picture books, including the mega–hits There Is a Monster Under My Bed Who Farts and This Is a Ball. He launched his much–anticipated middle–grade series, Funny Kid, in 2017 and the series is fast winning legions of fans around the world.
Kate and Jol Temple (NSW)
Kate and Jol write funny books for kids and are the award-winning authors of Captain Jimmy Cook Discovers Third Grade. They are also the authors of Yours Troolie, Alice Toolie and their picture books include Room on Our Rock, Mike I Don't Like, Parrot Carrot, Are You My Bottom? and I Got This Hat.
Gavin Aung Than (WA)
Gavin Aung Than is a freelance cartoonist. His webcomic Zen Pencils, a cartoon blog which adapts inspirational quotes into comic stories, has been featured by The Washington Post, The Huffington Post, Slate, Buzzfeed, Gawker and Brain Pickings, and was named one of the top 100 websites of 2013 by PC Mag. His first series for children, Super Sidekicks, grew out of Gavin's long-time obsession with superheroes.
Renée Watson (US)
Renée Watson is the bestselling Newbery Honor and Coretta Scott King Award–winning author of Piecing Me Together, and the acclaimed novels This Side of Home and What Momma Left Me. Her new book, Watch Us Rise, is co–written with Ellen Hagan. Renée lives in New York, USA.
Photographer: David Flores
Eddie Woo (NSW)
Eddie Woo has been teaching maths for more than ten years and in 2018 was named Australia’s Local Hero and shortlisted as one of the top ten teachers in the world. His ‘Wootube’ channel has amassed a following of more than 270,000 subscribers and his videos have been viewed more than 14 million times. He is the author of Woo’s Wonderful World of Maths.