Joan Lingard started to write when she was eleven years old and has continued ever since. In a career spanning over 4 decades she has published 14 books for adults and over 40 books for young people including the popular Kevin and Sadie quintet. Joan has received numerous awards for her work and in 1998 she was awarded an MBE for Services to Children’s Literature. Whilst most of her childhood was spent in Belfast she was born and lives in Edinburgh. Both places feature heavily in her writing. Joan Lingard has appeared regularly at the Edinburgh International Book Festival, delighting youngsters with her descriptions of what inspires her work. She says about writing: ‘…by reading and by writing we can enter different worlds, get inside the skins of different people in different places, and, in so doing, push out the boundaries of our own lives. That is why I started to read and later to write.'