Eva Ibbotson

The children's author  died on 20th October 2010, at the age of 85 at her home in Newcastle, it has been confirmed. She was best known for the Amazon adventure tale Journey to the River Sea, winner of the Nestlé children's gold award and shortlisted for the Carnegie medal, and for her funny, magical stories for younger children, including The Secret of Platform 13 and The Great Ghost Rescue.

Although she had battled poor health in latter years and was suffering from lupus, Eva continued to write. The last of her "romps", The Ogre of Oglefort, was published just a few months prior to her death and was shortlisted for the Guardian children's fiction prize and the Roald Dahl funny prize. "The thing you have to do is keep writing, the habit is too ingrained, you can't stop," she said at the time.