Elizabeth Holden, better known by her pen name Louise Lawrence, was an English science fiction author, acclaimed during the 1970s and 1980s. She has been classified as a writer for young adults, though due to the harsh content of her books some have disagreed. She died on December 6, 2013 of a heart attack in her home at Kiltimagh, Ireland, after suffering from heart problems a number of year prior.
Life Before Writing
Lawrence was born in Leatherhead, Surrey, England, on June 5, 1943. She became fascinated with Wales at a young age, and has set many of her novels there. She has flourished as an autodidact; she left school early on to become an assistant librarian. She married and had the first of her three children in 1963. Her departure from the library, she recalls, gave her the potential to turn toward writing: "Deprived of book-filled surroundings, I was bound to write my own."
In 1971, Lawrence released her first science fiction novel, Andra, about a futuristic society in which the ruler dominates the lives of the citizens of an underground city. The novel, a commentary on fascism, was labeled young adult, despite Lawrence's disagreement with the classification. The novel, which featured some adult content, was toned down and adapted into a short-lived Australian children's show in 1976.
Children of the Dust
Lawrence's eighth novel, Children of the Dust, was published in 1985. The novel, about the aftermath of a nuclear holocaust, sparked controversy for its nightmarish vision of a future in which children are born with deformities and the government leaves the citizens to fend for themselves. It contains graphic violence, profane language, and descriptions of sexual activity, for which it was banned from many school libraries. Despite this, the novel has developed a cult following.
- The Power of Stars
- The Wyndcliffe
- Sing and Scatter the Daisies
- Star Lord
- To Whom the Wilderness Speaks
- Cat Call
- The Earth Witch
- Calling B for Butterfly
- The Dream Road
- Children of the Dust
- The Warriors of Taan
- Keeper of the Universe
- The Disinherited
- The Crowlings
- The Llandor Trilogy
- The Witch and the Weather Mage
- Louise Lawrence official website
- A short biography and listing at Fantastic Fiction
- Louise Lawrence at the Internet Speculative Fiction Database