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Tasmanian-based children's playwright and author Lian Tanner 'has worked as a teacher in Australia and Papua New Guinea, as well as a tourist bus driver, a freelance journalist, a juggler, a community arts worker, an editor, and a professional actor'.

Source: Random House website,
Sighted: 23/09/2010


  • For further information, see Lian Tanner's website:

Awards for Works

Sunker's Deep 2014 single work novel young adult fantasy

'Sharkey was born on a fortunate tide, and everyone on the giant submersible Rampart knows it. He's a hero, a future admiral, beloved by the ancestors. The trouble is, it's all based on a lie, and now Sharkey is thirteen, the whole thing has begun to fall apart. He's been a fake hero for years, but when tragedy strikes, he must become a real one. And he has no idea how to go about it...

'Meanwhile above water, Petrel, Fin and the crew of the Oyster are on a mission, a mission to defeat the Devouts and bring knowledge back to the world, a mission they have no idea how to carry out. When the Captain of the Oyster comes up with a plan, Fin and Petrel have no choice but to accompany him - no matter how ridiculous or how dangerous the plan seems ...

'Can the Sunkers and the Ice Breakers put aside their differences and work together? Or will the Devouts finally catch up with them all? ' (Publication summary)

2014 shortlisted Aurealis Awards for Excellence in Australian Speculative Fiction Children's Division Best Children's Fiction
Ice Breaker 2013 single work children's fiction children's fantasy

'Petrel leaned on the rail, watching the ice cave and stamping her feet for warmth. The berg came closer. That's when she saw him. Laid out on the ice like a dead fish, with a scattering of snow covering his face. A boy, where there should have been nothing but the memory of winter. A frozen boy.

'Twelve-year-old Petrel is an outcast, the lowest of the low on an ancient icebreaker that has been following the same course for three hundred years. In that time, the ship's crew has forgotten its original purpose and broken into three warring tribes, the Cooks, the Officers and the Engineers. Everyone has a tribe except Petrel, whose parents committed such a terrible crime that they were thrown overboard, and their daughter ostracised.

'But Petrel is a survivor. She lives in the dark corners of the ship, trusting no one, speaking to no one except two large grey rats, Mister Smoke and Missus Slink. That is, until a boy is discovered, frozen on an iceberg, and brought onto the ship. No one knows where he has come from, and when he recovers consciousness he claims to have forgotten even his name. The tribes don't trust strangers; they haven't seen one for three hundred years. But Petrel saves him and hides him away in the forgotten corners of the ship, hoping he will be her friend.

'What she doesn't know is that for the last three hundred years, the ship has been guarding a secret. A secret that could change the world. A secret that the boy has been sent to destroy, along with the ship and everyone on it...' (Publisher's blurb)

2013 shortlisted Aurealis Awards for Excellence in Australian Speculative Fiction Children's Division
City of Lies 2011 single work children's fiction children's adventure fantasy 'A gripping fantasy adventure: the exciting sequel to Museum of Thieves. Six months have passed since the Great Storm, and Goldie Roth is trapped at home again, this time by the invisible chains of love and guilt. But when Toadspit's sister Bonnie is abducted by a mysterious criminal called Harrow, Goldie must leave home in a bold attempt to rescue her friends ...

In the last few months she had had more than a dozen messages from the museum, asking when she was going to take up her position as Fifth Keeper. Tonight she would reply. 'Never.'

Goldie Roth is a trained thief and a skilful liar. She's supposed to be one of the keepers of the mysterious Museum of Dunt, along with her friend Toadspit. But although she desperately wants to be a keeper, her parents are ill and she will not leave them. Then Toadspit's sister Bonnie is stolen, and Goldie is forced into action. She and Toadspit follow the child-stealers to the neighbouring city of Spoke. Along the way, Toadspit is also captured, and Goldie discovers some dangerous secrets - secrets that the child-stealers will kill to protect. She will need all her skills as a thief and a liar if she is to survive and save her friends. But survive she must. Because the Fugleman has returned to Jewel, and the Fifth Keeper will soon be needed more than ever ...' (Publisher's blurb)
2011 winner Aurealis Awards for Excellence in Australian Speculative Fiction Children's Division Best Childrens Fiction (Told Primarily through Words)
Last amended 30 Sep 2010
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