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John Marsden (1) (1950–)

Author of Tomorrow, When the War Began

For other authors named John Marsden, see the disambiguation page.

49+ Works 15,679 Members 349 Reviews 20 Favorited

About the Author

John Marsden was born in Victoria, Australia in 1950. He was working as a teacher when his first book, So Much to Tell You, was published in 1987. His other works include the Tomorrow series and Ellie chronicles. He bought an 850-acre property just outside Melbourne, Australia where he ran writers' show more courses and camps for eight years. In 2006, he opened a school there called Candlebark. (Bowker Author Biography) show less


Works by John Marsden

Tomorrow, When the War Began (1993) 3,271 copies
The Dead of Night (1995) 1,502 copies
The Third Day, The Frost (1995) 1,402 copies
Darkness, Be My Friend (1996) 1,225 copies
Burning for Revenge (1997) 1,145 copies
The Night Is for Hunting (1999) 1,103 copies
The Other Side of Dawn (1999) 1,078 copies
While I Live (2003) 639 copies
So Much to Tell You (1987) 554 copies
Letters from the Inside (1991) 513 copies
The Rabbits (1998) 490 copies
Incurable (2005) 477 copies
Winter (2000) 263 copies
Checkers (1996) 254 copies
Hamlet: A Novel (2008) 213 copies
Take my word for it (1992) 111 copies
South of Darkness (2014) 92 copies
Out Of Time (1990) 88 copies
Dear Miffy (1997) 72 copies
The Great Gatenby (1989) 70 copies
Home and Away (2008) 65 copies
Staying Alive in Year 5 (1990) 54 copies
The Journey (1988) 51 copies
The Year My Life Broke (2013) 33 copies
Looking For Trouble (1993) 31 copies
The Art of Growing Up (2019) 22 copies
I Believe This (2005) 17 copies
Creep Street (1996) 14 copies
Millie (2002) 13 copies
The magic rainforest (2002) 11 copies
A Day in the Life of Me (2002) 10 copies
A Roomful of Magic (2004) 10 copies
Norton's Hut (1998) 10 copies

Associated Works

Guys Write for Guys Read (2005) — Contributor — 759 copies
Dream Time: New Stories by Sixteen Award-Winning Authors (1989) — Contributor — 21 copies


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Common Knowledge



Never heard of this one, but can't wait to read it!
Trigger warnings: Death of a pet, fire, explosions, murder of a wife and child, blood depiction, military violence and war themes, gun violence

Update: 7/10, I've been wanting to read this for a while since it looked interesting to me and I'm glad I did, I can certainly say that it definitely feels similar to Alone by Megan E. Freeman but this author like another one I've read from managed to pull off a classic Australian twist making this fresh and original, where do I begin. It starts off with the main character Ellie Linton with six other friends enjoying their school holidays and living their lives in this rural town and they were in this open area called Hell, at first nothing much happens but the next day everything changes much like Alone. Ellie wakes up and noticed that there were a few changes like all the pets are dying or dead and everyone else seems to be captured, all that's left is her and her six remaining friends and the author succeeds in writing these characters well and all of them I enjoyed reading. At least they have each other. Anyways the fact that almost everything and everyone is gone was disorienting at first until Ellie stumbles across a world radio which gave some critical information like possible intervention from the US confirming that it's not a world war, well not yet and humanitarian aid will come "soon". It was a nice touch setting this book in the 90s as I only know a few books that are set during this time period from the fact that one character used a Walkman. The pacing is varied with some action scenes of explosions and chases but most of the book is a slow burn with Ellie contemplating about very deep subjects like nature, love and good and evil. By the time the book ends, it was heartwarming when I still saw Ellie and her group still all together now adjusted to this new reality but I'm confused about how the war actually started, it could be revealed in the next books in the series.… (more)
Law_Books600 | 121 other reviews | Nov 3, 2023 |
7/10, felt like an allegory. I liked it.
Law_Books600 | 21 other reviews | Nov 3, 2023 |
I have read this Australian classic a few times over the years and have enjoyed it as much as I did when I read it for the first time as a teen. It did get a bit bogged down and three-quarters of the way through when Ellie was thinking about the hermit's hut, however, there was plenty of action to make up for it throughout the rest of the novel.

I liked Ellie's narration of the story and enjoyed the strong friendships the six teenagers shared. A story of strength, survival and fortitude, "Tomorrow When the War Began" was an exciting read with a good ending.… (more)
HeatherLINC | 121 other reviews | Sep 4, 2023 |
I read the first book out of interest in what a friend read as a child. It was interesting, but I should have stopped at one... now I'm just reading YA war stories. Not bad, but not my thing either.
Kiramke | 26 other reviews | Jun 27, 2023 |



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Matt Ottley Illustrator
Shaun Tan Illustrator
Mark Jackson Illustrator
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Heather Potter Illustrator
Jon Vegard Lunde Translator
Molly van Gelder Translator
Kate Hosking Narrator
Molly van Gelder Translator
Tineke Funhoff Translator
Craig Phillips Cover artist


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