Kate Saunders

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Kate Saunders
Born (1960-05-04) 4 May 1960 (age 61)
Notable worksFive Children on the Western Front

Kate Saunders (born 4 May 1960 in London) is an English writer, actress and journalist. She has won the Betty Trask Award and the Costa Children's Book Award and been twice shortlisted for the Carnegie Medal.


Kate Saunders is the daughter of the early public relations advocate Basil Saunders[1] and his journalist wife Betty (née Smith),[2] She has worked for newspapers and magazines in the UK, including The Sunday Times, Sunday Express, Daily Telegraph, She and Cosmopolitan.[3]

She has also been a regular contributor to radio and television, with appearances on the Radio 4 programmes Woman's Hour, Start the Week and Kaleidoscope.[4] She was, with Sandi Toksvig, a guest on the first episode of the long-running news quiz programme Have I Got News for You.[5] The BBC children's series Belfry Witches was based on her series of children's books about two mischief-making witches.

Saunders won the annual Costa Children's Book Award for Five Children on the Western Front (2014), a contribution to the classic fantasy series that E. Nesbit inaugurated in 1902 with Five Children and It.[6][7] She was also a contributor to the authorised Winnie-the-Pooh sequel, The Best Bear in All the World. Her children's novel The Land of Neverendings has been shortlisted for the 2019 Carnegie Medal,[8] as was Five Children on the Western Front in 2016.

She has written many novels, such as Wild Young Bohemians, and also co-wrote Catholics and Sex (1992) with Peter Stanford,[9] who was then editor of the Catholic Herald.[10][11] Saunders and Stanford later presented a television series based on the book on Channel 4.[12]

Saunders' acting work includes an appearance as a policewoman dated by Rodney Trotter in Only Fools and Horses episode in 1982.[13]

Selected books[edit]


  • The Prodigal Father (1986) - Won The Betty Trask Award in 1986
  • Storm in the Citadel (1989)
  • Night Shall Overtake Us (1993)
  • Wild Young Bohemians (1995)
  • Lily-Josephine (1998)
  • The Marrying Game (2002)
  • Bachelor Boys (2004)
  • Crooked Castle (2013)
  • Mariana (2013)

The Laetitia Rodd Mysteries[edit]

  • The Secrets of Wishtide (2016)
  • The Case of the Wandering Scholar (2019)
  • The Mystery of the Sorrowful Maiden (2021)

Children's books[edit]

  • A Spell of Witches (1999)
  • The Belfry Witches (omnibus) (2003)
  • Cat and the Stinkwater War (2003)
  • The Little Secret (2006)
  • Beswitched (2010)
  • Magicalamity (2011)
  • The Whizz Pop Chocolate Shop (2012)
  • The Curse of The Chocolate Phoenix (2013)
  • Five Children on the Western Front (2014)
  • The Land of Neverendings (2017)


  1. ^ Traverse-Healy, Tim (19 June 1998). "Obituary:Basil Saunders". The Independent.
  2. ^ Brown, Andrew (9 April 1997). "Obituary: Betty Saunders", The Independent.
  3. ^ Author Spotlight at Random House.
  4. ^ author profile at Random House
  5. ^ HIGNFY – episode 1/1 at Comedy.Co.UK
  6. ^ Vincent, Alice (5 January 2015). "Wartime adaptation of Five Children and It wins in Costa Book Award categories". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 2015-01-20.
  7. ^ Five Children Universe – Series Bibliography. ISFDB. Retrieved 2015-01-20.
  8. ^ "2019 Carnegie and Kate Greenaway medals shortlists announced". Books+Publishing. 20 March 2019. Retrieved 26 March 2019.
  9. ^ Stanford, Peter (1999). Cardinal Hume and the Changing Face of English Catholicism. A&C Black. 1999. Bibliographic data.
  10. ^ Hebblethwaite, Peter (26 February 1993). "Lorenzo's sister edits Catholic paper". National Jewish Reporter. Archived from the original on 9 August 2013.
  11. ^ Saunders, Kate; Stanford, Peter (1992). Catholics and Sex: From Purity to Perdition. London: William Heinemann. ISBN 0-434-67246-7.
  12. ^ "Stanford, Peter". AP Watt. Archived from the original on 23 September 2006. Retrieved 27 November 2006.
  13. ^ Aled Jones with Good Morning Sunday. BBC. 6 December 2009.

External links[edit]