Lynne Reid Banks

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Lynne Reid Banks
Born (1929-07-31) July 31, 1929 (age 85)
London, England
Nationality British
Notable works
from the BBC programme Bookclub, 6 June 2010.[1]

Lynne Reid Banks (born 31 July 1929) is a British author of books for children and adults.

She has written forty books, including the best-selling children's novel The Indian in the Cupboard, which has sold over 10 million copies and has been successfully adapted to film. Her first novel, The L-Shaped Room, published in 1960,[2] was an instant and lasting best seller. The L-Shaped Room was later made into a movie of the same name and led to two sequels, The Backward Shadow and Two is Lonely. Banks also wrote a biography of the Brontë family, entitled Dark Quartet, and a sequel about Charlotte Brontë, Path to the Silent Country.

Banks was born in London, the only child of James and Muriel Reid Banks. She was evacuated to Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada during World War II but returned after the war was over. She attended St Teresa's School in Surrey. Prior to becoming a writer, Banks was an actress, and also worked as a television journalist in Britain, one of the first women to do so.[3]

In 1962 Banks emigrated to Israel, where she taught for eight years on an Israeli kibbutz Yas'ur. In 1965 she married Chaim Stephenson, a sculptor, with whom she had three sons; Adiel, Gillon and Omri Stephenson with whom she has recently collaborated on two picture books (see below). She now lives with her husband in Shepperton, near London, UK.[4]

Although the family returned to England in 1971, the influence of her time in Israel can be seen in some of her books (including One More River and its sequel, Broken Bridge - and other books such as An End to Running and Children at the Gate) which are set partially or mainly on kibbutzim.

Selected works[edit]

Children's novels[edit]

  • The Indian in the Cupboard
  • Tiger, Tiger
  • The Adventures of King Midas, illustrated by Jos. A. Smith (1992)
  • Alice-By-Accident
  • Angela and Diabola (1997)
  • The Dungeon
  • Maura's Angel
  • One More River (1973); revised edition c. 1992
  • Broken Bridge
  • The Fairy Rebel (1985)
  • The Farthest-Away Mountain (1976)
  • Harry the Poisonous Centipede, illustrated by Tony Ross
    • Harry the Poisonous Centipede (1997)
    • Harry the Poisonous Centipede Goes to Sea (2006)
    • Harry the Poisonous Centipede's Big Adventure (2001)
  • I, Houdini: The Autobiography of a Self-Educated Hamster (1988)
  • Stealing Stacey
  • Melusine (1988)
  • Bad Cat Good Cat (2011)
  • Ella and her bad Yellow T-Shirt, illus. Omri Stephenson
  • The Wrong-Coloured Dragon
Short stories
  • The Magic Hare, illus. Hilda Offen

Adult novels[edit]

  • The L-Shaped Room (1960)
  • An End to Running
  • Children at the Gate
  • The Backward Shadow, sequel to The L-Shaped Room
  • Two is Lonely, completing the L-Shaped Room trilogy
  • Casualties
  • Defy the Wilderness
  • Fair Exchange


  • Letters to My Israeli Sons (1973)
  • Torn Country (1982)
  • Dark Quartet – the story of the Brontës
  • Path to the Silent CountryCharlotte Brontë's years of fame

Picture books[edit]

  • The Spice Rack, illus. Omri Stephenson (2010)
  • Polly and Jake, illus. Omri Stephenson (2010)


  1. ^ "Lynne Reid Banks". Bookclub. 6 June 2010. BBC Radio 4. Retrieved 18 January 2014.
  2. ^ Biography
  3. ^ Lynne Reid Banks, TV news in the 50s was more thrilling than The Hour, The Guardian, 14 August 2011
  4. ^ "Biography". 2011. Retrieved 14 February 2014. 

External links[edit]