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Kiran Millwood Hargrave was born in Surrey in 1990, and her earliest ambition was to be a cat, closely followed by a cat-owner or the first woman on Mars. She has achieved only one of these things, but discovered that being a writer lets you imagine whatever you want.
She started writing poetry in her final year at university, producing three poetry books and a play before she turned to children’s fiction. Her bestselling debut The Girl of Ink & Stars, about a mapmaker’s daughter who must save her island, won the Waterstones Children’s Book Prize 2017 and the British Book Awards Children’s Book of the Year. Her second standalone story, The Island at the End of Everything, was shortlisted for the Blue Peter Book Award and the Costa Children’s Book Award, and long listed for the CILIP Carnegie Medal. Her third book, The Way Past Winter, was the Blackwell’s Children’s Book of the Year 2018.
Her debut YA title, The Deathless Girls, was long listed for the Diverse Book Awards 2020, and shortlisted for the YA Book Prize and the Foyles Children’s Book of the Year. Her first book for adults, The Mercies, was subject to a 13-way auction and debuted at number 1 on The Times Bestseller Chart, and number 5 on the Sunday Times Bestseller List. It has been longlisted for Not the Booker Prize.