Joan Lingard was the author of fourteen novels for adults and more than forty books for children. She was born in Edinburgh but grew up in Belfast. Both cities provided settings for her work, as did her husband’s backgrounds of Latvia and Canada.
The Twelfth Day of July, the first title in the best-selling Kevin and Sadie quintet set in Ulster, was published in 1970. The second in the series, Across the Barricades, won the prestigious W. German award for children’s literature, the Buxtedhuder Bulle, in 1986. Tug of War, was shortlisted for the Carnegie Medal in 1989, and won the Federation of Children’s Book Groups Award, the Sheffield Book Award and the Lancashire Children’s Book Club of the Year Award. She also won Scottish Arts Council Awards for her novel After Colette and for her children’s book Tom and the Tree House.
In 1998 she was awarded the MBE for Services to Children’s Literature.
Fittingly, Joan died on 12 July 2022 at the age of 90.