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Mary Hooper failed her eleven plus and left school without any qualifications. This early setback did not stop her in the least: in later life she went to the University of Reading to study English, thereby catching up on all the books she’d missed during her school career. Her first job after leaving school at 15 was as a window dresser: not for her she thought, so she got an office job, and learned to type. She started writing when she wrote a short story for Jackie magazine and had it accepted. Since then, she’s written over 90 books, from stories for the youngest reader to YA books dealing with difficult themes like teenage pregnancy and internet grooming. Fallen Grace was nominated for the Carnegie Medal in 2011. Her focus now is historical novels, and that’s where she sees it staying.
Her earlier career saw her write several series for younger readers. Best Pets and Lucy’s Farm both contain stories which revolve around ponies (or donkeys, if I’m being strictly accurate).
Finding the books
Easy to find.
Bibliography: pony books only
Becky and Beauty, Bloomsbury Children’s, London, 1998, 62 pp, illus Lucy Su
Lucy’s Wild Pony, Macmillan Children’s Books, London, 2000, 88 pp, illus Anthony Lewis
Lucy’s Donkey Rescue, Macmillan Children’s Books, London, 2000, 85 pp, illus Anthony Lewis