Tara Saracuse was born in Vancouver, British Columbia. She grew up in a house beside her elementary school, however she was still late for class every day. The secretary often left her a pre-filled late slip on the counter, so Tara could swing by on her way to class. Tara's first experience with literature came in Grade One, when her teacher read The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis aloud to the class. Tara remembers sitting cross legged on the itchy carpet and being amazed at how the pictures formed in her head. This experience was very unlike the well-loved picture books Tara was used to at home, and in that very moment, Tara decided, "When I grow up, I'm going to make pictures using words."
When Tara was twelve, her family moved to Victoria on Vancouver Island. Here, Tara discovered many new passions and hobbies. She learned to swim and joined a competitive swim team. She joined her school's Drama Club, and performed in many different plays and musicals. She worked backstage too, hanging lights and learning about special-effects and sound. She learned to scuba dive, and even worked in a dive store, leading snorkel trips and teaching people about the many strange creatures that hide beneath the surface. Tara also learned to dance, and performed with a Middle Eastern dance troupe. Throughout all Tara's teenage years, and all her varied hobbies, she always continued to read and write stories.
When Tara was eighteen, she started a degree in Theatre and Writing at the University of Victoria. She spent four magical years surrounded by words, red velvet audience seats, and the most inspiring of profs and peers. In 2010, Tara graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Creative Writing from UVic.
Tara's first book, Island Kids, is a reflection of Tara's main passions in life: stories and the beautiful island she lives on. After years of traveling all over Vancouver Island and between the Gulf Islands, Tara was thrilled to put to paper some of the incredible stories she's heard--and a few that found her! Her greatest hope is that Island Kids inspires others to explore the islands and embrace their youthful spirit within. She also hopes that her readers learn while reading her book, and that they share with others some of what they've learned.
Today, Tara lives on a small hobby farm in North Saanich with her incredible husband, their three cats--Malahat, Duncan, and Bandit--and their rambunctious three-year-old German Shepherd, Rocky. Tara continues to write, between her many hobbies which include working on her vegetable garden, playing with her dog, quilting, sewing, and knitting, and continuously exploring the islands with her friends and family.
Photo credits: Avril Matthews (2009) and Will Johnson (2010).