23. ilb 06. – 16.09.2023
Portrait Piers Torday
© Bernhard Ludewig

Piers Torday

Piers Torday, son of English writer Paul Torday, was born in Northumberland in 1974. He attended Eton College then studied at the University of Oxford. He has worked as a writer for theater, live comedy shows, and television. After attending an Arvon writing course, he wrote his first book for children and adolescents in 2013.

This fantasy novel »The Last Wild« (2013) is about a twelve-year-old boy who loses his ability to speak after the death of his mother and lives in an institution for children with behavioral problems. Since a »red plague« killed off all animals, people have been living on an artificial nutrient made with different flavors. One day, the boy meets a flock of talking pigeons and thinks he has completely lost his mind. But the encounter is only the beginning of his experiences with the few animals that have survived the mysterious illness. Together with some of them, the boy starts looking for a cure. Torday’s debut was on the shortlist for the Waterstones Children’s Book Prize and the UKLA Award, and was Calderdale Children’s Book of the Year 2014 as well as Stockton Children’s Book of the Year 2015. The book was followed by the sequels »The Dark Wild« (2014), awarded the Guardian Children’s Fiction Prize, and »The Wild Beyond« (2015). In 2016, Torday completed a political satire piece »Death of an Owl«, which his father had begun. He then turned back to the genre of children’s literature in 2017 when be published »There May Be a Castle« (2017), a story that partly takes place in a fantasy world and tells of a family crisis. The novel was named The Times Childrenʼs Book of the Year. »Piers Torday continues to demonstrate that he is one of the best writers for children working today« (»The Guardian«). In »The Lost Magician« (2018), four children open a book in a magical library and find themselves transported to a world called Folio, in which fairy tale characters fight against data-recording robots. This war broke out in the absence of the magician who created the library so the four children go in search of him to bring an end the fighting. Torday’s most recent work, »The Frozen Sea« (2019) picks this story up forty years after the initial events in the magical library: in 1984 the daughter of one of the four original characters makes a mysterious discovery in a bookstore that seems to be calling her to save a missing prince.

Torday’s books have been translated into many languages, including German, Dutch, French, and Italian. He lives in London with his husband and a very naughty dog.


Die Große Wildnis


München, 2013

[Ü: Petra Koob-Pawis]

Aufstand der Tiere


München, 2015

[Ü: Petra Koob-Pawis]

The Wild Beyond

Quercus Childrenʼs Books

London, 2015

Death of an Owl

Weidenfeld & Nicolson

London, 2016

There May Be a Castle

Quercus Childrenʼs Books

London, 2017

The Lost Magician

Quercus Childrenʼs Books

London, 2018

The Frozen Sea

Quercus Childrenʼs Books

London, 2019