I was born in Dublin, Ireland, and studied English Literature at Trinity College, Dublin, and Creative Writing at the University of East Anglia, Norwich, where I was awarded the Curtis Brown prize. I now offer a scholarship to Irish students undertaking the MA programme at UEA, more information about this can be found here.
I’ve published 11 novels for adults, a short story collection and 6 novels for younger readers, including The Boy In The Striped Pyjamas which was a New York Times no.1 Bestseller and was adapted for a feature film, a play, a ballet and an opera, selling around 10 million copies worldwide. Among my most popular books are The Heart’s Invisible Furies and A Ladder to the Sky.
I’m a regular book reviewer for The Irish Times and have been a judge for the Hennessy Literary Awards. the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award, the Green Carnation Prize, the Scotiabank Giller Prize in Canada, the 2019 Costa Novel Award and the 2019 Costa Book of the Year Award.
In 2012, I was awarded the Hennessy Literary ‘Hall of Fame’ Award for my body of work. I’ve also won 3 Irish Book Awards, and many international literary awards, including the Que Leer Award for Novel of the Year in Spain and the Gustav Heinemann Peace Prize in Germany. In 2015, I was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Letters from the University of East Anglia.
My novels are published in over 50 languages.
My latest novels are A LADDER TO THE SKY and, for younger readers, MY BROTHER’S NAME IS JESSICA.
My next novel, A TRAVELLER AT THE GATES OF WISDOM, will be published in July 2020.