Nina Bawden

Standard Name: Bawden, Nina
Birth Name: Mary Mabey
Self-constructed Name: Nina Mabey
Married Name: Mary Bawden
Married Name: Mary Kark
Writing in and beyond the second half of the twentieth century, NB produced more than forty novels: twenty-three for adults and twenty children. Not all can be noticed here. She said that she often did not decide until a book was actually in progress whether to write it for children or for adults, and that the classification is even sometimes a matter of marketing.
Bawden, Nina. In My Own Time: Almost An Autobiography. Virago, 1995.
She also wrote an autobiography and a work of bold and indignant socio-political protest, and was a regular book reviewer.
Photo of Nina Bawden in front of a row of small houses with stone facades, wearing a blue coat and a black hat, 1974.
"Nina Bawden" by Tony Evans, 1974-01-01. Retrieved from This image is licensed under the GETTY IMAGES CONTENT LICENCE AGREEMENT.


Connections Sort descending Author name Excerpt
Education Dervla Murphy
She decided on rebellion: total silence rather than learning to speak in Irish, secretly writing a book because she had none to read. These plans did not work because she was miserably homesick and sadistically...
Literary responses Alice Munro
In England, Gillian Allnutt admired the way Munro confers poetic power on matter-of-fact, almost laconic writing, and Nina Bawden (whose name Munro's biographer mangles) her wise and perceptive acceptance of life.
Thacker, Robert. Alice Munro. McClelland and Stewart, 2005.
In the...
Literary responses Muriel Spark
Graham Greene offered the same accolade as for her previous novel, recognizing its disappointing reception with: What fools the reviewers have been.
Greene, Graham. Graham Greene. A Life in Letters. Greene, RichardEditor , Alfred A. Knopf, 2007.
A. S. Byatt admired the mocking and sinister games played by the...
Literary responses Muriel Spark
Most reviewers, both in England and the USA, pronounced that the experiment here had failed. Nina Bawden returned to the admiring views she had held before Spark's previous novel, but in only a short review.
Stannard, Martin. Muriel Spark. The Biography. Weidenfeld and Nicolson, 2009.


By October 1985
Keri Hulme 's novelThe Bone People was published in England. It won the Booker Prize over the objections of Nina Bawden , who hated its depiction of violence to a child.
TLS Centenary Archive Centenary Archive [1902-2012].
(25 October 1985): 1202
“Tears, tiffs and triumphs”. Guardian Unlimited.