Stuart Hill was born in Leicester, in the East Midlands of England, where he
still lives today. His family heritage includes English, Irish, Romany and
Jewish blood. As a student his grades were average at best, but he was
fortunate to have a teacher who inspired in him a lifelong love of reading.
Since leaving school, he has worked as a teacher and an archaeologist, and now
balances life as both a bookseller and a writer.
The Cry of the Icemark is his first novel. When he was a teenager, Hill lost "the real Thirrin," his red-haired sister Kathleen, to leukemia. The story of the brave young warrior-queen who faces impossible dangers is dedicated to her. The Cry of the Icemark won the Ottakars Prize for the best new childrens novel - Ottakars is one of the UK's leading book chains. Foreign rights have been sold to over 14 countries, and Fox have bought the movie rights.
Blade of Fire, the second in the Icemark Chronicles series was published in the UK in September 2006 and in the USA in February 2007. The third book of the Icemark Chronicles, Last Battle of the Icemark, was released in 2008.
Hill says that his influences include H. Rider Haggard, J.R.R. Tolkien, C.S. Lewis, and Margaret Abbeyhis former grade school teacher who is also a writer of historical novels.
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Where did you grow up?
What were you like at school?
What did you want to be when you grew up?
What did you do after you left school?
I went to work as a car trimmer in a mouse-infested asbestos hut with no sanitation (our toilet was a window in a secluded corner I'm not kidding). When it rained water flooded in and if you didn't keep the lid on your lunch box the mice had your sandwiches! After six years of this I finally came to my senses and I went to college and eventually university. Unfortunately insanity set in again and I was daft enough to become a teacher. At the time of writing I'm now in recovery and no longer work in schools.
Why did you begin writing/illustrating?
I couldn't read or write until I was seven and I can still remember that almost magical feeling when those strange angular symbols actually began to have a meaning. I'm not exaggerating, I remember that the letters literally suddenly started to make sense, almost as though a switch and been thrown in my brain and the light of ...
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No Man's Land
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Inspired by the experiences of his grandfather, J. R. R. Tolkien, during World War I.
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