Sign up to receive our regular news and events announcements – we send about one newsletter per month.

Open Right

H J Harper


When H.J. Harper was growing up in WA, she wanted to be either a mad scientist or an author. She now lives in Victoria and writes books for younger readers, like the action-packed Star League series, but is still working on her Mad Science PhD.

Where were you born?

I was born in Perth, Western Australia, where I spent my days making potions out of Vegemite and toothpaste, and wishing I was a Ninja Turtle.

What other jobs have you had?

My love of books carries over into all parts of my life, and so most of my jobs have been in either libraries or bookstores… apart from a disastrous three day stint as an office temp. It was really exhausting pretending to know what I was doing all day. But then I quit to go and work in (you guessed it) a bookstore!

What themes are recurring in your work?

Action-packed scenes for reluctant readers; strong friendships through teamwork; individuality; pop-culture references.

What have been the highlights of your career?

While being interviewed on ABC3 while dressed as a ninja was pretty amazing, the best part of being an author definitely has to be meeting fans and seeing how enthusiastic they are.

Where have your works been published?

Random House has published all 8 books in the Star League series, as well as the upcoming Bureau of Mysteries (Feb 2012); I have also had a short story published in Black Dog Books’ Short and Scary Anthology.

What are you passionate about?

I’m passionate about encouraging kids to read, especially reluctant readers. Reading should be about having fun, and helping young readers discover that books are just as exciting as movies and video games is incredibly rewarding. And for young adult readers, I’m a huge horror fan who loves talking about all things spooky.

Haven’t I seen you before?

Yes! I’m the bookseller who recommended that book you loved last week. And now I’ve written a few of my own for you to enjoy…

Anything else you’d like to share with us?

It turns out that Vegemite and toothpaste potions don’t taste very nice.

Enquire about booking H J Harper

Find A Speaker