Maria was born and brought up in England, but has spent much of her life in New Zealand and France with her husband, four daughters and a well-travelled dog. She is now settled in Somerset. Her passions are family, writing and mountains (not always in that order). She is fascinated by the ties between past and present, thrives on the adrenaline of the moment and is happiest when faced with an uphill challenge. As a teacher and speech therapist, she has always had a professional as well as personal interest in language, literacy and literature and has been inspired by the many children, teenagers and young adults with whom she’s worked. Her first YA novel, BROKEN STRINGS, was published by Scholastic in 2014, and her second novel, A FLASH OF BLUE, published in 2015. ME AND MISTER P, illustrated by Daniel Rieley, was published by OUP in 2017, with three more to follow.