Berlie's first book How Green You Are, published in 1982 was just the start of a prolific career in writing. She is best known for her stories for children and teenagers, but has also written two novels for adults, collections of poetry, radio plays and adaptations of her books for television.
It is no exaggeration to refer to some of her books as classics: Granny Was a Buffer Girl, and Dear Nobody, both set in Sheffield, for example.
Sheffield's back garden (the Peak District) also features strongly in Berlie's work in stories such as the fantasy story, Blue John, Children of the Winter, about the Eyam plague, and Deep Secret, which features the villages lost to the building of the Ladybower reservoir.
Did you know that Berlie wrote the riddle trail that so many children have enjoyed coming back to again and again in the Botanical Gardens? Or that her poem that begins "Here lies a city's heart" can be found inscribed in stone on The Moor?
Here are just some of her books and links to where you can get them (more will be uploaded when we get time, but do check out Berlie's website linked at top of this page for more information):
Published October 2022
When Carl visits the Peak District with his parents to try and recover from the fallout of a horrific accident, he becomes caught up in the mysterious tale of the Lost Lad. Are the hills actually haunted or is Carl being chased by his own demons? As past and present collide, Carl must learn to come to terms with the loss of his best friend, Jack and find a way to move on.
At the Old Queen's Head
Joe and the Dragonosaurus is about a boy who doesn’t have a pet because of his allergies. He makes one up, a scary, hairy green monster with eleven legs. It can fit in his pocket, it can grow wings, it’s better than any of the animals his school friends talk about. And then, one day, Joe saves the life of a real animal…
Marketed as a teen novel, but so beautifully told story with well-rounded, real characters, that it should appeal to anyone. It tells of love, family, inheritance, and growing up.
Multi award winning novel, in the UK and internationally, including Winner of Carnegie Medal 1991.
All Sheffielders should read this at least once in their lives.
Also a winner of the Carnegie Medal - 1986 (and other awards)
The Independent said of Requiem:
"The story of Cecilia’s adolescence is exquisitely told in a style that is both economic and exuberant… There are moments of near-Joycean epiphany… the plot is tight and the narrative is startling."
Rose Doran Dreams is a spell-binding tale. Its off-beat story world is beautifully realised, its atmosphere subtly sensual with a sinister undertow. This is an utterly original, vivid, gripping, and sometimes disturbing, read. – Lesley Glaister
Berlie at work.
"Many new books have been dreamed up in this room."