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Mary Hooper - Author

About the Author

Says of herself: I was born in Barnes, South West London, which became expensive and trendy as soon as I left it. I often – nostalgically and rather lazily – use Barnes as a setting for my books. If I speak of a river then I’m thinking of the Thames, and if it’s a park or common then I picture Barnes Common. I was able to utilise all these local points and bring in Mortlake and Richmond, too, when I was writing two books about Queen Elizabeth I’s magician, Dr Dee, who lived in Mortlake.

I wasn’t very clever at school, although I was always good at English. I failed my 11-plus exam, and then my 13-plus, and after this there wasn’t a lot of hope for me, so I didn’t get any qualifications or certificates. My last school report says, “Far too noisy and talkative” and I think this was because, being an only child, I just loved having someone around to talk to. I left school when I was fifteen (you could in those days) but it wasn’t until many years later than I did a part-time degree at Reading University and began to get officially educated.

I started working as a window dresser, but soon went into an office and – very valuable, this, for a writer – learned to type. One day I read a short story, thought that I could do better and sat down and wrote one. I sent it to Jackie, a teenage magazine, and much to my surprise sold it for £14. I was launched as a writer! I went on to write lots of short stories, and then serials, and eventually decided to write a book. At the time, there were hardly any books for teenagers, so I found getting published quite easy, but it’s very different now. I’ve written perhaps seventy or so books for children and young adults, most of them set in modern times, but as soon as I began writing historical novels I realised how much I loved doing this, and decided I didn’t want to write any more modern ones. No, not even any Megans!

I’m married to Richard and we live in Henley on Thames, Oxfordshire. I’ve still got a VW Beetle, but have upgraded it to a cabriolet version, which will be lovely when the weather improves and I can put the top down (if I can remember how to do it). My children are very grown up, my son is a writer and works for New Scientist and my daughter works for Microsoft - and has recently presented me with a gorgeous first grandson, Mackenzie. I look after him on Wednesdays so don’t ever bother me then! My hobbies are reading (of course), pottering around the house, painting furniture and being nosy (which goes with being a writer).

Featured books by Mary Hooper

Other books by Mary Hooper

Velvet

Velvet

Author: Mary Hooper Format: eBook Release Date: 03/09/2011

London, 1901. Nach dem Tod ihres Vaters ist die junge Velvet ganz auf sich gestellt. Eine Stelle als Wascherin bewahrt sie zwar vor dem Schlimmsten, doch erst als Madame Savoya, ein stadtbekanntes Medium, die Waise unter ihre Fittiche nimmt, scheint die groe Chance des Madchens gekommen.

Fallen Grace

Fallen Grace

Author: Mary Hooper Format: Hardback Release Date: 07/06/2010

Grace Parkes has just had to do a terrible thing. Having given birth to an illegitimate child, she has travelled to the famed Brookwood Cemetery to place her small infant's body in a rich lady's coffin. Following the advice of a kindly midwife, this is the only way that Grace can think of to give something at least to the little baby who died at birth, and to avoid the ignominy of a pauper's grave. Distraught and weeping, Grace meets two people at the cemetery: Mrs Emmeline Unwin and Mr James Solent. These two characters will have a profound effect upon Grace's life. But Grace doesn't know that yet. For now, she has to suppress her grief and get on with the business of living: scraping together enough pennies selling watercress for rent and food; looking after her older sister, who is incapable of caring for herself; thwarting the manipulative and conscience-free Unwin family, who are as capable of running a lucrative funeral business as they are of defrauding a young woman of her fortune. A stunning evocation of life in Victorian London, with vivid and accurate depictions, ranging from the deprivation that the truly poor suffered to the unthinking luxuries enjoyed by the rich: all bound up with a pacy and thrilling plot, as Grace races to unravel the fraud about to be perpetrated against her and her sister.

The Betrayal

The Betrayal

Author: Mary Hooper Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 07/09/2009

In this final volume, Lucy is asked to continue her work on behalf of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth I. And her romance with Tomas, the queen's fool, seems to be flourishing - or it is until Mistress Juliette, the new lady-in-waiting, arrives and Tomas pays her far too much attention for Lucy's liking. But then Lucy realises that Juliette is telling lies and is not what she appears to be. Lucy fears for the safety of the queen as there are always supporters of Mary, Queen of Scots who are willing to risk all. How will Lucy convince Tomas of her fears when he just teases her and tells her that she is simply jealous? Desperate times call for desperate measures A thrilling and romantic historical novel that will give all teenage readers an accurate sense of the Elizabethan period.

Zara

Zara

Author: Mary Hooper Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/06/2009

Zara and Ella were both two weeks late for the start of the school year. Ever since then they've been best friends. They're always fooling around finding out the star signs of boys they fancy, reading out their horoscopes and playing games to discover the initial of the boy they're going to marry - just things to pass the time and take their minds off exams and tests. Ella's never really taken it all very seriously, but then Zara starts to act a bit differently - dressing like a Goth and experimenting with her new-found spiritual side and psychic powers in order to get them noticed by the popular crowd in their class and earn them both a bit of kudos. But little does Ella know how far Zara is really prepared to go - even betraying their friendship - to get the attention she clearly seeks. Mary Hooper writes with haunting accuracy about the manipulative mind games and power struggles that go on within groups of friends at school. Zara is a brilliantly observed account of school life for teenage girls as well as being a book that one simply burns through - pacy, juicy and lively writing about issues that horrify and fascinate and resonate all at once.

Holly

Holly

Author: Mary Hooper Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/06/2009

'Holly. I hope you won't mind me buying you this. I think it's the sort of thing you'll like. Am I right? And I think it matches your eyes. This comes with best wishes from (and I know it's corny). A Friend.' And that was how it all started. Holly starts receiving anonymous gifts at the cafe where she works. She can't believe it - how romantic can you get? But when Holly finds out the identity of her admirer she is in for a shock - her admirer is not a potential boyfriend: her admirer is her father. Holly has to come to terms with the fact that her father is not the man who lives at home with her, who she loves and calls her father. Her father is a man who has lived all her life on the other side of the world, not even knowing of her existence. Holly and her mother have some talking to do. Mary Hooper tackles this emotionally fraught situation with tenderness and compassion, yet still with her trademark pacy readability that has proved so popular with the young teen girls' market.

Newes from the Dead

Newes from the Dead

Author: Mary Hooper Format: eBook Release Date: 20/05/2009

Anne Green cant move a muscle, cant open her eyes, cant scream. She lies paralyzed in absolute darkness, terrified by her final memorybeing hanged. Is she in purgatory? Hell? Was she buried alive? An innocent woman caught up in a nightmare, Anne Green is trapped with her racing thoughts, her burning need to revisit the eventsand the manthat led her to the scaffold.Meanwhile, a shy young medical student attends his first dissection and notices something strange as the doctors prepare their tools. Did her eyelids just flutter? Could this corpse be alive?Haunting, thrilling, and impossible to put down, Newes from the Dead is based on the true story of the real Anne Green, a servant who survived a hanging in 1650 England only to awaken on the dissection table. Newes from the Dead concludes with an excerpt from an original 1651 document that recounts this chilling medical phenomenon.

Ways and Tricks of Animals, with Stories about Aunt Mary's Pets

Ways and Tricks of Animals, with Stories about Aunt Mary's Pets

Author: Mary Hooper Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 10/04/2009

Newes from the Dead

Newes from the Dead

Author: Mary Hooper Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 05/03/2009

In 1650, Anne Green, a young servant girl, gave birth prematurely to an illegitimate child. Sadly the baby died and poor Anne was falsely accused of infanticide. In front of a large crowd she was hanged and then carried to the College of Physicians to be dissected for medical science. But as Anne's corpse lay on the table and the doctors assembled, a strange rattle was heard in her throat. Could she still be alive?

Little Dinners, How to Serve Them with Elegance and Economy

Little Dinners, How to Serve Them with Elegance and Economy

Author: Mary Hooper Format: Hardback Release Date: 28/01/2009