Tony Shillitoe

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Tony Shillitoe
BornAnthony Bruce Shillitoe
(1955-03-28) 28 March 1955 (age 65)
Tailem Bend, South Australia
GenreFantasy and Young Adult
Notable worksThe Last Wizard (1995)
Blood (2002)
Caught in the Headlights (2003)
Notable awardsshortlisted inaugural Aurealis Award (Best Fantasy Novel 1995) - The Last Wizard
shortlisted Aurealis Award (Best Fantasy Novel 2002) - Blood: the First Ashuak Chronicle
notable read CBC Children's Book of the Year for Older Readers (2003) - Caught in the Headlights
SpouseFrancesca Megen Stropin
ChildrenJaimee Shillitoe
Kim Shillitoe
Leah Stropin

Tony Shillitoe is an Australian fantasy writer.

His first novel Guardians was published in 1992 by Pan Macmillan. It was the first part of the Andrakis trilogy, soon followed by Kingmaker and Dragonlords in 1993. The trilogy was partially rewritten for the 2006 edition.


In 1995 Shillitoe published a teenage fantasy, The Last Wizard, which was shortlisted in the inaugural Aurealis Awards for Best Fantasy Novel. Several short stories and a play monologue were published in various anthologies between 1996–1998.

In 1999, Shillitoe published his first young adult novel, Joy Ride with Wakefield Press. Set in Adelaide in the mid-1990s, and inspired by a real news story in which two boys stole a bus and drove it up the South Eastern Freeway. The novel was popularly received by teenagers and young adults, but despised by most older readers, and did not receive positive publicity. It has been used in schools, and also in correctional institutions as a text for rehabilitating young males.

Shillitoe returned to the fantasy genre in 2002 when HarperCollins released Blood, the first book in the Ashuak Chronicles. Blood was also short-listed for Best Fantasy Novel in the Aurealis Awards in 2002. Passion and Freedom completed the Ashuak Chronicle trilogy in 2003.

2003 also saw the release of Shillitoe's second young adult novel, Caught in the Headlights, which was listed as a "Notable Book for Older Readers" by the Children's Book Council, and it has subsequently appeared on Premier's Reading Lists in South Australia, Victoria and New South Wales. In contrast with the previous novel Joy Ride, this novel espouses a more conventional moral attitude. Caught in the Headlights has been successful. It also reflects the author's zero tolerance for drugs, drawn from the experiences of several close friends who fell victim to drug use.

In 2006 Shillitoe released the first novel in a new fantasy series, the Dreaming in Amber quartet, published by Harper Collins. The second book, A Solitary Journey, was also released in 2006. Prisoner of Fate followed in June 2007 and the final book, The Demon Horsemen, was published in July 2008.

Body of Works

Andrakis Trilogy

The Andrakis fantasy series follows the interwoven fates of the central characters, Andra - a warrior with a prophetic future, and A Ahmud Ki - a sorcerer determined to become a dragonlord. The Andrakis world and many of the characters originated from a host of Dungeons and Dragons style games that Shillitoe created and ran for several playing groups throughout the 1980s. The series enjoyed a run of success, although the third book struggled to make sales, perhaps because its unique cover design made it seem not to belong to the first two books [ citation needed ].

The Ashuak Chronicles

The central character of the series, Alwyn, is loosely based on Gandhi and Christ because the character tries to resolve the conflicts of his world through reason and passive resistance.

Dreaming in Amber

Book one, The Amber Legacy, focuses on the fate of Meg farmer, a 16yo girl who discovers that she has inherited magical skill for her line of ancestors and is the only person who can intervene in the impending doom facing her people.

The story follows Meg's life journey from age sixteen to her seventies as she is caught up in world-changing events despite her efforts to stay out of them. The series also brings back to life a key character from the original Andrakis series - A Ahmud Ki - who has a chance to redeem himself. All ten of Shillitoe's fantasy novels - the Andrakis trilogy, the Ashuak Chronicles trilogy, and the Dreaming in Amber quartet - are drawn together into a single saga by the Dreaming in Amber series.

Other works

Short stories

Awards and nominations

Aurealis Awards

Fantasy division


After Martin Middleton, Tony Shillitoe was the second Australian author to be given a contract for an adult fantasy series in Australia.

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  1. "Contents Lists". Locus Online . Retrieved 19 February 2009.
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  4. "1995 Aurealis Awards". Locus Online . Retrieved 14 March 2008.
  5. "2002 Aurealis Awards". Locus Online . Retrieved 14 March 2008.