Mandy Hager is a multi-award winning writer of fiction for young adults. In 2019 she was awarded the Margaret Mahy Medal for life-time achievement and a distinguished contribution to New Zealand’s literature for young people. She has won the LIANZA Book Awards for Young Adult fiction 3 times (‘Smashed’ 2008, ‘The Nature of Ash’ 2013, ‘Dear Vincent’ 2014), the NZ Post Children’s Book Awards for YA fiction (‘The Crossing’ 2010), an Honour Award in the 1996 AIM Children’s Book Awards (‘Tom’s Story’), Golden Wings Excellence Award (‘Juno Lucina,’ 2002), Golden Wings Award (‘Run For The Trees’, 2003) and six Notable Book Awards. She has also been awarded the 2012 Beatson Fellowship, the 2014 Katherine Mansfield Menton Fellowship and the 2015 Waikato University Writer in Residence. In 2015 her novel ‘Singing Home the Whale’ was awarded the Margaret Mahy Book of the Year award, and the Best Young Adult fiction Award from the NZ Book Awards for Children and Young Adults. It has also been named a 2016 IBBY Honour Book, an international award.
In May 2017 her historical novel for adults, Heloise, was published by Penguin NZ. It tells the life story of Heloise d’Argenteuil, famed lover of 12th century French philosopher Peter Abelard. It was longlisted for the 2018 Ockham Book Awards.
She is a trained teacher, with an Advanced Diploma in Fine Arts (Whitireia) and an MA in Creative Writing from Victoria University. She also writes adult fiction, short stories, non-fiction, educational resources, blogs and articles, and tutored the Novel Course for Whitireia’s Creative Writing Programme. From 2019 to 2022, she was the President of the New Zealand Society of Authors Te Puni Kaituhi o Aotearoa (PEN NZ) Inc.