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Books and Ideas at Montalto

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Jackie French

Listen to Jackie French

‘Author, ecologist, historian, dyslexic and honourary wombat (part time)’ – that’s Jackie French’s job title, according to her own website.

Jackie French writes novels and non-fiction; fantasy, sci-fi, historical fiction and ecology; for adults and for kids. Over the course of her career, she’s written a dizzying 140 books. Loved by Australian kids for picture books including the Diary of a Wombat series and Queen Victoria’s Underpantsshe’s a passionate advocate for dyslexics and children’s literature and has served as the Australian Children’s Laureate.

Jackie has won countless awards across various genres, including the NSW Premier’s History Award. Her latest novel, Miss Lily’s Lovely Ladiesis about a secret finishing school for young women during World War I.

At Montalto Vineyard, Jackie French joins host Wendy Orr to discuss historical fiction, children’s literacy and an extraordinary life in literature.


Portrait of Jackie French

Jackie French

Jackie French is an award-winning writer. She was the Australian Children's Laureate for 2014-2015 and the 2015 Senior Australian of the Year. In 2016 Jackie became a  Member of the Order of Australia for her  contribution to children's literature and her advocacy for youth literacy. She is regarded as one of Australia's most popular children's authors, and writes across all genres - from picture books, history, fantasy, ecology and sci-fi to her much-loved historical fiction. 

Portrait of Wendy Orr

Wendy Orr

Wendy Orr is a Canadian-born Australian writer who now lives on the Mornington Peninsula. Her books for children and adults have been published in 27 countries and won awards around the world.

Books and Ideas at Montalto

A series of thoughtful conversations about Australian literature – away from the city, at Montalto on the Mornington Peninsula.