Lian Tanner has worked as a teacher, a tourist bus driver, a juggler, an editor and a professional actor. She has been dynamited while scuba diving and arrested while busking. She once spent a week in the jungles of Papua New Guinea, hunting for a Japanese soldier left over from the Second World War. It took her a while to realise that all this was preparation for becoming a writer.

Lian was inspired by an over-protected boy (and her own wild childhood) to write her best-selling Keepers Trilogy, which has been translated into eleven languages and won two consecutive Aurealis Awards for Best Australian Children’s Fantasy. A story about her uncle running away from home started her thinking about the Hidden series, which was shortlisted for two Aurealis Awards and received three starred reviews from School Library Journal (USA). And a conman she once met in Madrid was the inspiration for the Rogues trilogy, which was also shortlisted for two Aurealis Awards.

Her first picture book, Ella and the Ocean, illustrated by Jonathan Bentley, won the 2020 NSW Premier’s Award for Children’s Literature. Her latest novel, A Clue for Clara, is a hilarious mystery involving a small chook and a big crime.

Lian held her audience in the palm of her hand for the entire time.

Librarian, Kambala School, Sydney

Lian was absolutely marvellous, leaving staff and students most inspired to write.

Teacher, Bellerive Primary School, Hobart

The whole Year 5 level was buzzing after Lian’s visit, with many students coming to me at lunch the next day with more plot twists. 

Librarian, Haileybury College, Brighton

Published Titles

A Clue for Clara, Allen & Unwin, 2020

Ella and the ocean, Allen & Unwin, 2019

Winner of the 2020 Patricia Wrightson Prize for Children’s Literature (NSW Premier’s Awards)

The Rogues Series 

Allen & Unwin

Book 1: Accidental Heroes, 2017

Shortlisted for the 2017 Aurealis Award

Book 2: Secret Guardians, 2018

Shortlisted for the 2018 Aurealis Award

Book 3: Haunted Warriors, 2019

The Hidden Series

Allen & Unwin

Book 1: Ice Breaker, 2013

Shortlisted for the 2013 Aurealis Award

Starred reviews from School Library Journal and Kirkus reviews

Book 2: Sunker's Deep, 2014

Shortlisted for the 2014 Aurealis Award 

Starred review from School Library Journal

 Book 3: Fetcher's Song, 2016

The Keepers Series

Allen & Unwin

Book 1: Museum of Thieves, 2010

Winner o the 2010 Aurealis Award for Best Australian Children’s Fantasy

Shortlisted for the Adelaide Festival Award for Children’s Literature

Selected as one of the Bank Street Children's Book Committee's Best Children's Books of the Year (USA)

Named as a 'White Raven' (books that deserve worldwide attention) by the International Youth Library in Munich

Starred reviews from School Library Journal and Kirkus reviews.

Book 2: City of Lies, 2011

Winner of the 2011 Aurealis Award 

Starred review from School Library Journal.

Book 3: Path of Beasts, 2012