Dorothy Perkyns

Dorothy began her writing career in the early seventies when she came to Canada from England, where she was a teacher. At first she worked as a freelance journalist, contributing many articles to magazines in England and Canada and broadcasting regularly on CBC Radio. Urged on by her own children, she began writing her first YA novel, The Mystery of the Hemlock Ravine, which was published in 1986. It was followed in 1988 by Geoffrey Bilson Award winner, Rachel’s Revolution. Peril at Plover Point, a sequel to her first book, followed in 1991. Signal Across the Sea (1994), beginning in England and moving to Canada in World War II, drew on her own experiences of growing up in wartime. The idea for The Mastodon Mystery (1996) came from learning of the discovery of mastodon bones not very far from her home.Unlike these earlier mystery/adventure novels, Dorothy's novel Last Days in Africville was an attempt to record, in fictional terms, the very real destruction of the community of Africville, which had been home to a tightly knit group of African Canadians for over one hundred years.In addition to the Geoffrey Bilson Award for Rachel’s Revolution, all Dorothy’s other books have gained recognition by education departments and/or awards organizations, including the Canadian Children’s Book Centre. Last Days in Africville made the final cut for the Canadian Library Association Children’s Book of the Year Award, and was nominated for four other awards including the Silver Birch and Hackmatack Awards.Dorothy's latest book is Bridget's Black '47, published in 2009 by Dundurn Press. This is the story of the spirited thirteen-year-old Bridget Quinlan, whose life is shattered by the Irish potato blight. Forced to leave her home, she faces many perils, losses and deprivations en route ao an eventually happier life in Quebec.


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