I first heard about Malorie Blackman when my niece and her mother were planning to go to our local theatre to see the theatre show of Noughts and Crosses. I’m not sure why I hadn’t heard of the book before then. However, I made sure shortly after to read the book. I was disappointed then that I hadn’t read it before because the feedback from the theatre show was that it was excellent, and I’d felt that I’d missed out. Noughts and Crosses (although aimed at 12-year-olds) was one of those books that I couldn’t put down, and I was sad when I‘d finished reading it.
Malorie was born in 1962, and initially, her career aspirations were to be an English teacher. After studying and HNC in Computer Science she worked in IT for some time before graduating from the National Film and Television School, later changing career and to become a writer in her late twenties.
Her first book (Not So Stupid) was published when she was twenty-eight (1990), it was a collection of science fiction and horror stories. It was also the year that she got married. That book was followed by her first in the series of the Girl Wonder books (1991) and in 1992 the first in the series of her first Betsey Biggalow books. In the same year (1992) Hacker and Trust Me were also published.
Altogether there are four Girl Wonder Books, published from 1991 to 2014 and five Betsey Biggalow Books, published from 1992 to 2014. Girl Wonder books are aimed at children aged 7 to 9, the Betsey Biggalow series is suitable for children aged 5 -7. Hacker is aimed at readers aged 9 to 12, whereas Trust Me is ideal for children 12+. This is the uniqueness of Malorie’s talent, to be able to successfully write stories for various aged children. Malorie has also written picture books suitable for children aged 3 to 5. In total today Malorie has written over fifty books that are suitable for young children and young adults.
There are several books, including Big Heart Boy and Noughts and Crosses that have been made into TV series, stage plays and radio such is her capability to cross different genres of writing.
Malorie is inspirational and worthy of her many awards including receiving her OBE in 2008 and then becoming Children Laureate from 2013 to 2015.
To date, Malorie is now writing episodes for the new Doctor Who and is continuing to write children’s stories and taking part in Human Rights projects. She truly is an inspiration.
2020© Sharon RM Stevens