The world of children’s literature mourns author Marcus Sedgwick, who died at 54


The Printz Award winner’s death has sent shock waves through the world of children.

Award-winning children’s and YA author Marcus Sedgwick has died. He was 54 years old.

“Marcus had an amazing range, curiosity and talent for prose. He was a kind mentor and friend. I will miss him, ”said editor Simon Boughton SLJ. Boughton has worked with Sedgwick on his Printz winners and many other titles.

In over 20 years, Sedgwick has written over 40 books, ranging from picture books to adult titles. His most acclaimed titles were YA. It won the 2014 Printz Prize (Midwinter Blood) and two Printz Awards (The ghosts of the sky2016 and Revolver2011).

Sedgwick’s literary agency, RCW Literacy Agency, issued this statement:

“It is with deep regret that RCW announces the unexpected death of author Marcus Sedgwick.

“Marcus Sedgwick was an award-winning and beloved author of over 40 extraordinary adult and young adult books, youth novels, non-fiction and academic essays. His books have been shortlisted for over thirty awards, including the Carnegie Medal (five times), the Edgar Allan Poe Prize (twice) and the Guardian Children’s Fiction Award (four times) He is also the best-known author in Printz Prize history, with an award-winning book and two honor books. He won the Branford Boase Prize for his first novel, flood landand the Booktrust Teenage Prize for my sword sung.

“Marcus was born and raised in a small village in East Kent, South East England, and has lived more recently in the South of France.

“His family and close friends are asking for privacy at this very sad and difficult time.”

Fans and fellow writers took to Twitter to express their shock and sadness at the sudden loss.

His agent at RCW, Claire Wilson, wrote “Marcus was at the start of everything for me – his work reminded me of what children’s books can do and why they are important. I will always be grateful for the honor of to be able to portray it, and to find such a kind, wise, and funny person behind the writing. It’s a huge loss.”

“Devastated to hear the terrible news of the tragically untimely death of Marcus Sedgwick. He was a superb writer and did things no one else did in YA,” tweeted medal-winning author Anthony McGowan CILIP Carnegie 2020 for Lark.

The New York City School Library System Twitter account posted, “Thank you for your work, #marcussedgwick. You have enlightened the lives of many young readers and we will all be missed.

And author Thomas Taylor tweeted “Marcus was a dazzling storyteller, a creative powerhouse, a deeply thoughtful and insightful man, and a good, good friend.”

Sedgwick’s last outing was in Octoberall in your head, an adult title about the battle to make doctors think you’re sick when you have an “invisible” disease and the stigma and life that comes with chronic illness. Sedgwick suffered from chronic fatigue syndrome, also known as myalgic encephalomyelitis or ME/CFS. He was an advocate for the ME/CFS community and suffered from chronic illnesses.


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