Joss Ackland has had a distinguished acting career on stage, film and in television. Stage successes include Falstaff in Henry IV, both Captain Hook and Mr Darling in Peter Pan, Jorrocks in Jorrocks, Peron in Evita and Frederick in A Little Night Music. His films include White Mischief, The Sicillian and Lethal Weapon. His hundreds of television appearances include most famously CS Lewis in Shadowlands and Alan Holly in First And Last, both of which won Emmy and BAFTA awards. He has been a subject of This Is Your Life and Desert Island Discs.
Georgie Adams was born in Tunbridge Wells, and grew up in Kent and Sussex. She was an editor for many years in the UK and Australia, was co-director of a small publishing company in London, before becoming a successful writer of children's books. She has written over 70 books, mostly for young children. Georgie is married to artist and printmaker, Tom Adams, has two daughters and three stepchildren, and lives in a rural part of North Cornwall, overlooking the Kensey Valley. Her website is http://www.georgieadams.com/
Adjoa Andoh has worked extensively in both television and theatre with parts in TV projects such as 'Dr. Who' and Philip Pullman`s `The Shadow of the North`. She also had a role in 'His Dark Materials' at the National Theatre. Adjoa has read many audiobooks including numerous titles by Alexander McCall Smith's.
Peter Bailey has been illustrating books for more than 35 years and has worked with many of today's best known authors, including Philip Pullman, Allan Ahlberg, Michael Morpurgo and Joan Aiken. He lives near Liverpool with his wife, Sian, who is also an illustrator.
R. Scott Bakker is the son of a tobacco share-cropper, and spent his youth either exploring the wooded bluffs of Lake Erie's north shore or working in hot summer fields. He left the countryside to study English language and literature at University of Western Ontario, and from there moved to Nashville to pursue a PhD in philosophy. He now lives in London, Ontario with his fiancee, Sharron, and their cat, Scully.
Clare Balding is one of the BBC's leading sports presenters. She won the coveted Royal Television Society's Sports Presenter of the year Award in 2003. She has been working for the BBC in radio and television for over 15 years across a range of sports, covering three Olympic Games, two Paralympics, two Winter Olympics and a Commonwealth Games. Clare is the face of the BBC's coverage of horseracing, equestrian sports and rugby league. She has written for the Sunday Times, the Observer, the Evening Standard and the Racing Post and is currently involved in a web magazine called Eclipse.Clare Balding, a Cambridge graduate, was elected President of the Union in 1992. She was a good all-rounder in sport, and was champion lady rider in 1990 and leading amateur flat jockey in 1989 and 1990. Clare was honoured with the Horse Writers and Photographers Association (HWPA) Racing Journalist of the Year Award in 2003 and in 2004 she won both the HWPA Sir Peter O'Sullevan Broadcaster of the Year award and the prestigious Royal Television Society Sports Presenter of the Year award. In 2009, she was praised for "perfect presentation" by the judges of the Broadcast Awards who named the Grand National 2008 as their sports programme of the year.
Daniel Barenboim was born in Buenos Aires in 1942, educated in Rome and made his piano debut at the age of eight and as a solo pianist at the age of eleven with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra. His musical tours have taken him all over the world and he has made regular appearances at the Bayreuth, Edinburgh, Lucerne, Prague and Salzburg festivals. In 1967 he married the cellist Jacqueline du Pré (who died in 1987). In 1988 he married Elena Bashkirova. He was musical director of the Paris Orchestra 1975-88, and he has been Music Director of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra since 1991 and of the Berlin State Opera since 1992.
Martyn Beardsley has lived in Nottingham all his life. A civil servant for many years, he is now concentrating on his writing career. As well as being a children's author, one of his great passions is history. In 2002 he published a biography of Sir John Franklin, the Arctic explorer. A committed Buddhist, he is interested in reading, sport, keep-fit and yoga. Martyn Beardsley is married with one daughter and a mad dog.
Quentin Blake was born in 1932. He went to Chislehurst and Sidcup Grammar School before studying English at Downing College, Cambridge. After National Service he did a postgraduate teaching diploma at the University of London, followed by life-classes at Chelsea Art School.He is known for his collaboration with writers such as Russell Hoban, Joan Aiken, Michael Rosen, and Roald Dahl, as well as creating much-loved characters of his own, including Mister Magnolia and Mrs Armitage.His books have won numerous prizes and awards, including the Whitbread Award, the Kate Greenaway Medal, the Emil/Kurt Maschler Award and the international Bologna Ragazzi Prize. He won the 2002 Hans Christian Andersen Award for Illustration, the highest international recognition given to creators of children's books. Described by The Guardian, as 'a national institution', in 1999 he was appointed the first ever Children's Laureate, a post designed to raise the profile of children's literature.
Barry Bostwick is an American actor and singer. He is best known for playing Brad in the 1975 cult classic The Rocky Horror Picture Show, and has also had considerable fame in musical theatre.
Richard Brassey is the author and illustrator of a host of colourful and original non-fiction books for children, among them the bestselling Nessie the Loch Ness Monster and The Story of Scotland, which won the TES/Saltire Society Award. He lives in Essex. Visit his website at http://www.richardbrassey.com.
John Brindley lives with his partner in the southeast of England. He has two children, both of whom have been instrumental in the development of his early stories for young people. John is a keen music fan and enjoys playing squash and socialising in London.
Jan and Sara were already friends when one day they decided they wanted to write children's stories and it would be more fun to write them together. That was 18 years ago. Since then they've written over 160 stories - including some about ghosts, football, ghosts playing football and naughty gargoylz. Jan lives in Essex with her family and Sara lives in London with hers. They both have black cats who completely rule their lives. For more information, please visit Jan and Sara's website www.burchettandvogler.co.uk and follow them on Twitter at https://twitter.com/BurchettVogler. Keep up-to-date with the Sam Silver: Undercover Pirate blog at http://samsilverundercoverpirate.blogspot.co.uk.
Meg Cabot is the author of nearly fifty books for both adults and teens, many of which have been bestsellers, most notably The Princess Diaries series, which is currently being published in over 38 countries, has sold over five million copies worldwide, and was made into two hit movies by Disney. Meg now divides her time between Key West, Indiana, and New York City with a primary cat (one-eyed Henrietta), various back-up cats, and her husband. Be sure to check out Meg's websites, http://www.megcabot.com.
Linda Chapman is the million-copy selling author of such series as My Secret Unicorn, Stardust, Skating School, Not Quite a Mermaid and Loving Spirit. She has also written for the Animal Ark series, Rainbow Magic and many more Working Partners' series. Linda lives in Leicestershire with her husband, two daughters and their three dogs. Her website is http://www.lindachapmanauthor.co.uk/
Lucy Coats read English and Ancient History at Edinburgh University, then worked in children's publishing and now writes full-time. She is a gifted children?s poet and has also written several picture book texts. She is widely respected for her lively retellings of myths and has also published a children?s novel. Her 12-book series, Greek Beasts and Heroes is being published by Orion throughout 2010. Lucy's website is at www.lucycoats.com. You can also follow her on Facebook http://tinyurl.com/lucycoatsfacebook and Twitter http://www.twitter.com/lucycoats
Stephen Coonts is the author of fifteen New York Times bestsellers, which have been published in over 20 countries worldwide. A former Navy pilot and Vietnam combat veteran, he and his wife live in Nevada. Visit his Web site at www.coonts.com.
Clare Corbett has had a successful career on stage, screen and radio. Theatre credits include 'To Kill A Mocking Bird' 'Pygmalion' and Spoonface Steinberg' and her TV credits include BBC's 'Spooks,' 'Fastnet' and 'Final Demand'. A winner of the prestigious Carleton Hobbs Radio Award, she has appeared in over 250 radio plays including 'Absolute Power' 'Venus and Adonis' and ' Dr Zhivago'. Her other voice work comprises of Aardman Animation's ' the planet sketch' and numerous audiobooks (children and adult) including 'Poppy Shakespeare', 'Swallowing Grandma' and 'Child X'. She read 'Alys, Always' by Harriet Lane for Orion.
Geoffrey Cousins is one of Australia's best known business and community leaders. His corporate life includes periods as CEO at George Patterson and Optus, in addition to positions on ten public company boards ranging from PBL to Telstra. He was the founding chairman of the Starlight Foundation and the Museum of Contemporary Art among many other community involvements. The Butcherbird is his first novel.
Steven Crossley graduated from the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London and has since established an acting career on both sides of the Atlantic in Theatre, Television, Film and Radio Drama; performing with distinguished Theatre companies in New York and London. His audio book performances cover an eclectic range of subjects in both fiction and non-fiction, from thrillers, mysteries, classics and histories to children's fantasy and biographies.