Erin Hunter is a collective pseudonym used by the authors Victoria Holmes, Kate Cary, Cherith Baldry, Inbali Iserles, Tui T. Sutherland, Kasey Widhalm and Rosie Best, in the writing of several juvenile fantasy novel series, which focus on animals and their adventures. Notable works include the Warriors, Seekers, Survivors, and Bravelands book series. It was also previously used by Gillian Philip. Each of the authors play a different role: while Holmes creates the storyline of each book, Cary, Baldry, and Sutherland take turns writing the books. In addition, another person who isn't an Erin Hunter writes the manga: Dan Jolley.
In the year 2003, HarperCollins asked Victoria Holmes to write a fantasy series about feral cats, but, not being a reader of fantasy, she was less than enthusiastic, despite her love of cats. After writing one storyline, Kate Cary was brought in to write the book as Holmes went behind the scenes to supervise details and edit the book. Then on the third book, Forest of Secrets, Cherith Baldry joined Erin Hunter. Later, after Sutherland wrote the first Warriors field guide, she became the fourth Erin Hunter.
The name "Erin Hunter" was chosen for several reasons. First, if the authors used all of their own names, the books would be placed in different places in a library, making them hard to find. Second, they were trying to pick a surname that would place the books very close to the Redwall series by Brian Jacques, which was, at the time, the book series with the closest plot to Warriors. One of the authors suggested "Hunter", and the others found that it was "perfect" because not only did it place the book series close to Jacques, but it evokes the image of a cat. Victoria Holmes suggested ‘Erin' because she liked the name. One of Victoria Holmes's favourite given names is Erin, and it was accepted for being a strong Celtic name and "not particularly girly".
Victoria Holmes was born in Berkshire, England. Holmes was the original author of the series with Harper Collins requesting her to write the series. After inviting Kate Cary to do the actual writing of the book, she moved behind the scenes to help edit and supervise the details.
Holmes grew up on a farm in England. She learned how to ride horses at age two. Later she attended Oxford University, whose buildings "inspired an interest in history". She now lives in London where she works as the editor for the series.
On 5 April 2011, the Bookperk website ran a special for signed copies of Warriors: Omen of the Stars #4: Sign of the Moon. Because Erin Hunter is not an actual person, these books were signed by Victoria Holmes on her behalf.
As of 14 April 2017, Holmes announced on her Facebook page that she would no longer be writing for the series as she feels she has reached the point where she can contribute no more to the story. With this, Holmes is no longer a 'Hunter', but will apparently still play a role in the development of the film.
Kate Cary was the second author brought on board to write for the Warriors series. Holmes chose Cary to write the first book after Holmes had finished one storyline. In the first series she wrote Into the Wild, Fire and Ice and Rising Storm. In the second series (The New Prophecy) she only wrote Dawn, the third book. In the third series (Power of Three) she wrote The Sight, Dark River and Eclipse. In the fourth series (Omen of The Stars) she wrote Fading Echoes and The Last Hope.
She was born in England on 4 November 1967. She later moved to Scotland where she lived for 12 years before going back to England where she currently resides. Besides the Warriors series she has also written the books Bloodline and the sequel Reckoning.
Cherith Baldry was the third author brought in to the Erin Hunter team and was born on 21 January 1947. Holmes invited her to join on the third book, Forest of Secrets after seeing her writing style and feeling that it was similar to Kate Cary's. She wrote the rest of the books that Kate Cary did not write, since there were only 12 books of Cary's.
Tui T. Sutherland
Tui T. Sutherland was born in Caracas, Venezuela, but now lives in the United States which makes her the only non-British author of the series. She now lives in Boston and first wrote the field guide Secrets of the Clans. Sutherland was an editor of the Warriors series for HarperCollins until she quit editing to become a full-time writer. Victoria Holmes approached her and asked if she would like to become a writer for the Erin Hunter team, and Sutherland accepted. She is also the author of the novel series Wings of Fire.
Gillian Philip is the author of The Empty City and A Hidden Enemy, the first two books in the Survivors series. She lives in the northeast Scottish Highlands with her husband, two children, three dogs, two cats, and hamster. Philip has toured the United States twice as the face of the Erin Hunter responsible for "Survivors". In addition to Survivors, she has written the Rebel Angels series (Firebrand, Bloodstone, Wolfsbane and the forthcoming Icefall); the Darke Academy series, and young adult novels including Bad Faith, Crossing The Line and The Opposite of Amber. She was married in 1989 to Lan and had a set of twins, Lucy and Jamie. Philip no longer writes Erin Hunter books as of July 2020 after being fired from Working Partners for tweeting in support of J. K. Rowling.
Inbali Iserles has written three books so far, the third, fifth and sixth books of the Survivors series: Darkness Falls, The Endless Lake and The Storm of Dogs. She also publishes animal fantasy novels in her own name, including The Tygrine Cat and the Foxcraft trilogy.
The newest addition to the group is Rosie Best, an editor working on the Survivors series. She was first involved with the Erin Hunter team assisting Holmes with responding to Warriors fanmail. She has published one YA novel, Skulk (Strange Chemistry, 2012), in her own name.
'BOOK WORK from Erin Hunter'—
Warriors: The Prophecies Begin
Warriors: Dawn of the Clans
Warriors: A Vision of Shadows
Warriors: The Broken Code
Warriors Manga: Graystripe's Adventure
Warriors Manga: Rise of Scourge
Warriors Manga: Tigerstar and Sasha
Warriors Manga: Ravenpaw's Path
Warriors Manga: SkyClan and the Stranger
Warriors: Super Edition
Warriors: Field Guides
All written by Victoria Holmes
Seekers (Original Series)
- The Quest Begins (2008) (Tui Sutherland)
- Great Bear Lake (2009) (Cherith Baldry)
- Smoke Mountain (2009) (Tui Sutherland)
- The Last Wilderness (2010) (Cherith Baldry)
- Fire in the Sky (2010) (Tui Sutherland)
- Spirits in the Stars (2011) (Cherith Baldry)
Seekers (Return to the Wild)
- Island of Shadows (2012) (Cherith Baldry)
- The Melting Sea (2012) (Tui Sutherland)
- Rivers of Lost Bears (2013) (Cherith Baldry)
- Forest of Wolves (2014) (Cherith Baldry)
- The Burning Horizon (2015)
- The Longest Day (2016) (Cherith Baldry)
- Toklo's Story (2010)
- Kallik's Adventure (2011)
- Lusa's Tale (cancelled)
Survivors (Original Series)
- The Empty City (2012) (Gillian Philip)
- A Hidden Enemy (2013) (Gillian Philip)
- Darkness Falls (2013) (Inbali Iserles)
- The Broken Path (2014) (Gillian Philip)
- The Endless Lake (2014) (Inbali Iserles)
- Storm of Dogs (2015) (Inbali Iserles)
Survivors (The Gathering Darkness)
- A Pack Divided (2015) (Gillian Philip)
- Dead of Night (2016) (Rosie Best)
- Into the Shadows (2017)
- Red Moon Rising (2017)
- The Exile's Journey (2018)
- The Final Battle (2019)
- Alpha's Tale (2014) (Gillian Phillip)
- Sweet's Journey (2015) (Gillian Philip)
- Moon's Choice (2015) (Gillian Philip)
- Tales from the Packs (2015)
- Broken Pride (2017) (Gillian Philip)
- Code of Honor (2018) (Gillian Philip)
- Blood and Bone (2018)
- Shifting Shadows (2019)
- The Spirit Eaters (2020)
- Oathkeeper (2020)
The authors have specific roles. First, Holmes, the editor, sends in the preliminary script and outline to Cary, Baldry, or Sutherland, depending on who writes the book. Then, the author develops Holmes' ideas into a single book which is sent back to Holmes for one last check over and edit. After she finishes, the author fixes it up and gets ready to publish it.
For the Survivors series, there is a different approach taken. The whole team creates a detailed story outline and develops the characters together, and then the actual writing gets done by a single author, who is allowed to change something significant about the plot or characters if they feel that a certain character would not act a specific way.
With four different authors, Holmes has said that "[the book] 'sounds' like Erin, because she has a very distinctive voice". She compares the style of the authors to a different language where a stray line or word can stick out. Holmes says that she is in charge of editing and making sure that the book sounds correct. The books are all told in a third person narrative though the point of view changes with each series. The first series, the original Warriors series, followed Firepaw. Then in the second series, The New Prophecy, the view switched between Firepaw's, now Firestar's, two daughters, Squirrelpaw and Leafpaw, in addition to Tigerstar's son, Brambleclaw, and Graystripe's son and daughter, Stormfur and Feathertail in Moonrise. In the Power of Three series, it goes back between Firestar's grandchildren Lionblaze, Jayfeather, and Hollyleaf. In the Omen of the Stars series, it goes between Lionblaze, Jayfeather, Dovepaw, and Ivypaw. In Night Whispers, it also includes the perspective of Flametail of ShadowClan, which is the only time it has been out of ThunderClan in the four main series since Moonrise. In Dawn of the Clans, the point of view switches between Gray Wing, Clear Sky, and Thunder. In A Vision of Shadows, the point of view mainly follows Alderheart, Twigbranch, and Violetshine. In the Seekers series, the point of view alternates between the three bears, Lusa, Kallik and Toklo until The Last Wilderness, where Ujurak's point of view is added in with the other three. In the Survivors series, the point of view is focused on Lucky, the Lone Dog turned beta.
- Hunter, Erin. "Official Home of the Warriors Books by Erin Hunter". HarperCollins Publishers. Retrieved 7 August 2017.
- Hunter, Erin. "Who is Erin Hunter?". HarperCollins Publishers. Retrieved 14 June 2016.
- "TOKYOPOP and HarperCollins Turn "Warriors" by Erin Hunter into Manga". Comicbookbin.com. Retrieved 18 April 2008.
- Hunter, Erin. "FAQs". Warriors. HarperCollins Publishers. Retrieved 21 September 2010.
- "Transcript of Erin Hunter Chat No. 1". Wands and Worlds. Archived from the original on 4 March 2008. Retrieved 2 March 2008.
- "Erin Hunter Chat No. 4 Transcript – January 19, 2008". Wands and Worlds. 19 January 2008. Archived from the original on 3 April 2013. Retrieved 30 March 2013.
- "Cat Tales". Nick Magazine: 75. December 2009 – January 2009.
- "Erin Hunter". Fantasy Book Review. Fantasy Book Review. Retrieved 28 September 2010.
- "Signed Copy of Warriors Book". Bookperk. HarperCollins. Archived from the original on 24 July 2011. Retrieved 5 April 2011.
- Cary, Kate. "BlogClan An Erin Hunter Blog by Kate Cary". BlogClan. Retrieved 26 January 2015.
- "Erin Hunter Chat No. 6 Transcript – the chat". Wands And Worlds. Archived from the original on 19 September 2009. Retrieved 4 December 2009.
- "Kate Cary's Blog: February 27th, 2009". Kate Cary. 27 February 2009. Retrieved 30 December 2009.
- "Biography of Erin Hunter". Book Reviews for the Average Joe. Book Reviews for the Average Joe. 3 May 2010. Retrieved 28 September 2010.
- "Erin Hunter chat No. 5 transcript – 16 August 2008". Wands and Worlds. 16 August 2008. Archived from the original on 17 October 2013. Retrieved 30 March 2013.
- Philip, Gillian. "Some stuff about me ..." Gillian Philip ...taking dictation from people who don't exist. Retrieved 26 December 2012.
- Hunter, Erin (2009). The Fourth Apprentice. HarperCollins. ISBN 0-06-155509-6.
- Cary, Kate. "Night Whispers". BlogClan. Retrieved 28 January 2010.
- "Shattered Sky, Hardcover – April 11, 2017". Amazon. Amazon.com, Inc. Retrieved 7 August 2017.
- Hunter, Erin (2017). Warriors: A Vision of Shadows #4: Darkest Night. Amazon. HarperCollins.
- "Warriors: Legends of the Clans (Warriors Novella), Paperback – April 11, 2017". Amazon. Amazon.coom Inc. Retrieved 7 August 2017.
- "Survivors #4: The Broken Path". Amazon. Amazon.com Inc. Retrieved 18 July 2013.
- "Survivors: The Gathering Darkness #3: Into the Shadows, Hardcover – February 7, 2017". Amazon. Amazon.com, Inc. Retrieved 7 August 2017.
- "Bravelands #1: Broken Pride, Kindle Edition". Amazon. Amazon.com, Inc. Retrieved 7 August 2017.
- Hunter, Erin (2018). Bravelands #2: Code of Honor. Amazon. HarperCollins.
- Hunter, Erin (2018). Blood and Bone. Harpercollins.
- Hunter, Erin (2019). Shifting Shadows. Harpercollins.
- Hunter, Erin (2019). Bravelands #5: The Spirit-Eaters. Harpercollins.
- Hunter, Erin (2020). Bravelands #6: Oathkeeper. Harpercollins.
- "INTERVIEW: Erin Hunter". Writers Unboxed. Retrieved 2 August 2008.
- Brown, Jennifer M. (11 July 2012). "Wednesday, July 11, 2012: Kids' Maximum Shelf: Survivors - Gillian Philip: The Lure of the Pack". Shelf Awareness. Shelf Awareness. Retrieved 17 November 2012.
- "Reviews: The quest begins BETA". DC Public Library Catalog. DC Public Library. Archived from the original on 2 May 2012. Retrieved 23 August 2010.