Mollie Hunter

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Maureen Mollie Hunter McIlwraith (30 June 1922 – 31 July 2012)[1] was a Scottish writer known as Mollie Hunter. She wrote fantasy for children, historical stories for young adults, and realistic novels for adults. Many of her works are inspired by Scottish history, or by Scottish or Irish folklore, with elements of magic and fantasy.


Born and raised near Edinburgh in the small village of Longniddry, her final years were spent in Inverness.[2] A portrait of her hangs in the Scottish National Portrait Gallery.[3]

Hunter's debut was Patrick Kentigern Keenan, published by Blackie and Son in 1963 with illustrations by Charles Keeping.[4][5] In the U.S. it was published in 1963 as The Smartest Man in Ireland.


For The Stronghold Mollie Hunter won the 1974 Carnegie Medal from the Library Association, recognising the year's best children's book by a British subject.[6] The same novel, published in The Netherlands as "Een toren tegen de romeinen" won the "Zilveren Griffel" (Silver Pen) award in 1978 for children's writing.

She won the Phoenix Award from the Children's Literature Association in 1992, recognising A Sound of Chariots (1972) as the best children's book published twenty years earlier that did not win a major award.[7]

The Oxford English Dictionary credits Hunter with a quotation regarding the word consensus: "No single group has the right to ignore a consensus of thoughtful opinion"[8]



  1. ^ a b ISFDB and WorldCat records show some later UK publications under the US titles, and perhaps vice versa.
  2. ^ a b c d WorldCat libraries have catalogued at least four of her books with the subtitle "a story of suspense": A Stranger Came Ashore, The Wicked One, The Walking Stones, and The 13th Member.


  1. ^ Published on Tuesday 7 August 2012 00:00. "Obituary: Mollie Hunter (McIlwraith), writer - Obituaries". Retrieved 7 August 2012.
  2. ^ The Wee Web: Authors and Illustrators archive: Mollie Hunter biography Archived 27 September 2011 at the Wayback Machine
  3. ^ National Galleries Scotland: Mollie Hunter
  4. ^ "Formats and editions of Patrick Kentigern Keenan". WorldCat. Retrieved 2013-03-05.
  5. ^ Patrick Kentigern Keenan, Blackie 1963
  6. ^ (Carnegie Winner 1974) Archived 8 June 2009 at the Wayback Machine. Living Archive: Celebrating the Carnegie and Greenaway Winners. CILIP. Retrieved 2012-08-17.
  7. ^ "Phoenix Award Brochure 2012"[permanent dead link]. Children's Literature Association. Retrieved 2013-03-02.
    See also the current homepage, "Phoenix Award" Archived 20 March 2012 at the Wayback Machine.
  8. ^ [Consensus ad idem: a protocol for development of consensus statements. Can J Surg 2013; 56 (6); 365]

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