Blackman, Malorie

Tagged: Author

(1962-    ) UK screenwriter and author, prolific in several genres and for various age levels, though she is almost certainly best-known for the Young Adult Noughts & Crosses sequence beginning with Noughts & Crosses (2001) [for vts see Checklist below], which is set in an Alternate World called Zafrica where whites are oppressed and blacks are in charge (see Race in SF). In this first and in succeeding volumes, as the years pass, the injustices and ameliorations of a world so constructed are traced prismatically through sometimes exceedingly passionate friendships and relationships. By the time of Crossfire (2019), the surviving protagonist of the first tale is sixty, and her daughter's generation, now adult and in positions of power, takes centre stage. The slightly earlier Whizziwig sequence beginning with Whizziwig (1995) features the adventures, couched for younger readers, of the eponymous Alien.

Some of Blackman's various singletons are of genre interest. In Thief! (1996) a girl accused of theft at her new school is translated by a thunderstorm into the Near Future, which is genuinely Dystopian. Dangerous Reality (1999) examines the perils of a Virtual Reality environment under the control of an excessively powerful AI. The protagonist of The Stuff of Nightmares (2007), terrified of Death, finds himself on a death-bound train where all the other passengers are frozen in time; he must somehow affirm his "right" to live. Set in a Near Future land after the devastation of World War Three, Noble Conflict (2013) depicts life in a City whose beleaguered guardians belive they must oppose savage incursions from without; the world and the ways of understanding it turn out, however, to be extremely conflicted.

Blackman was appointed OBE in 2008 and held the position of UK Children's Laureate from 2013 to 2015, receiving in this capacity a special judges' award in the 2014 Kitschies. [JC]

Malorie Blackman

born London: 8 February 1962

died

works (selected: picture books not listed, nor books for new readers)

series

Whizziwig

Noughts & Crosses

  • Noughts & Crosses (London: Doubleday, 2001) [Noughts & Crosses: hb/]
    • Black & White (Charlotte, North Carolina: Paw Prints, 2007) [vt of the above: Noughts & Crosses: hb/Ulla Puggaard]
    • Naughts & Crosses (London: Simon and Schuster Books for Young Readers, 2009) [ebook: vt of the above: Noughts & Crosses: na/]
  • An Eye for an Eye (London: Corgi Books, 2003) [chap: Noughts & Crosses: pb/]
  • Knife Edge (London: Doubleday, 2004) [Noughts & Crosses: hb/]
  • Checkmate (London: Doubleday, 2005) [Noughts & Crosses: hb/]
  • Double Cross (London: Doubleday, 2008) [Noughts & Crosses: pb/]
  • Nought Forever (London: Penguin Books, 2019) [novella: Noughts & Crosses: pb/]
  • Crossfire (London: Penguin Books, 2019) [Noughts & Crosses: hb/]

individual titles

collections and stories

links

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