Author details

J A Henderson


J.A. Henderson (Jan-Andrew Henderson) lives in Edinburgh with his partner and two children and runs ‘City of the Dead’ ghost tours – which requires him to look moody and wear black a lot.  

He lived in the USA for several years, where he wrote, acting in and directed plays, he returned to Scotland and began writing non fiction books, children’s novels and young adult thrillers.  

His last three YA novels were short listed for thirteen literary awards and he is the winner of The Royal Mail Award and the Doncaster Book Prize.

About writer's work

Children’s novels and young adult thrillers.  Shortlisted for 13 literary awards and winner of the Doncaster and Royal Mail Awards.  Signed to the Anne Clark Literary Agency.  Specialises in twists the reader doesn’t see coming, strong female characters and lots of black humour. 

Websites featuring the author

Black Hart Entertainment | Website | Facebook | City of the Dead Tours

Current events and projects

Available for readings and residencies for teens.

Sarah Culshaw, Librarian, Elfed High School, Wales - 'J A Henderson visited our school as part of a scheme to enthuse reluctant boy readers in lower school and he certainly did that!  The boys were mesmerised by his stories.

H.  Glenrothes High School - ‘I wanted to let you know I really enjoyed listening to your journey on becoming a writer.  Wow, it was hilarious.  I’m going to sit and come up with a brilliant idea.’

D.  Elfed High School - ‘Really good, interesting and the funniest day of my life!  Your adventures have made me want to be an author!’ 

H. H. Lasswade High School - ‘My friend and I thought we were going to listen to a boring writer that talked for hours in an expressionless voice.  We were wrong.  Your talk was brilliant…. I think you gave us great advice.’

M. Lasswade High School - ‘You single handedly have inspired me in a way I cannot describe

Other work

"Christmas Day in the Morning". Contributed to Ah Dinnae Ken story compilation. Merchiston Publishing 2014

Father Figure. Adult horror novel available exclusively as an e-book on 2012

Founder/director of Black Hart Entertainment. Walking tours, corporate and school events and retail.

Television and radio appearances, including Fox Cannel, Discovery Channel, History Channel, BBC Television, Scottish Television, ITV, Living TV, Canadian, Polish, French and Japanese National Television, BBC Radio Scotland, Radio Forth, BBC Radio 1, and BBC Radio 4.

Historical lectures. Literary and storytelling workshops.

Directing, acting, set design, lighting, construction and scene painting. Co-wrote and ran weekly cabaret and conducted storytelling, writing and drama workshops. Witherbee Children’s Theatre, New York 1989-1994.


Local authority where they are based


Local authorities where they can work

Aberdeen, Aberdeenshire, Angus, Argyll and Bute, Clackmannanshire, Comhairle nan Eilean Siar (Western Isles), Dumfries and Galloway, Dundee, East Ayrshire, East Dunbartonshire, East Lothian, East Renfrewshire, Edinburgh, Falkirk, Fife, Glasgow, Highland, Inverclyde, Midlothian, Moray, North Ayrshire, North Lanarkshire, Orkney, Perth and Kinross, Renfrewshire, Scottish Borders, Shetland, South Ayrshire, South Lanarkshire, Stirling, West Dunbartonshire, West Lothian, Other

Age groups

9-12, Teens, Adults

LL funded


BRAW network


Author type




Books written


Author(s): J A Henderson
Swing long enough and the world changes forever. Published by OUP.

Storm Chasers

Author(s): J A Henderson
In Storm Chasers storms are disappearing all over the world and Team X are sent to investigate.

Time Trip

Author(s): J A Henderson
When top-secret plans go missing in Time Trip, it's down to Cat to save the day but little does she know how her actions could change the course of history. Published by OUP.

The Fear Machine

Author(s): J A Henderson
Project X Origins is a ground-breaking guided reading programme for the whole school.

Edinburgh: City of the Dead

Author(s): J A Henderson
It's the capital of a civilized western nation - a seat of learning that influenced the world. Yet today it is famous as the most haunted city on Earth. This book sets out to discover why.

The Town Below The Ground: Edinburgh's Legendary Underground City

Author(s): J A Henderson
Below Scotland's capital, hidden for almost two centuries, is a metropolis whose very existence was all but forgotten. For almost 250 years, Edinburgh was surrounded by a giant defensive wall.

The Emperor's New Kilt: The Two Secret Histories of Scotland

Author(s): J A Henderson
Did you know that most tartans date only from 1822? Or that the kilt was invented by a factory manager? Know that a Scot landed in America almost a century before Columbus?

The Ghost That Haunted Itself: The Gruesome Ghoul of Edinburgh's Greyfriars Graveyard: The Story of the McKenzie Poltergeist

Author(s): J A Henderson
Greyfrair's Cemetery in Edinburgh has a centuries old reputation for being haunted.


Author(s): J A Henderson
30 years ago a secret army research facility was destroyed - overrun by millions of ants. Two survivors fled the carnage, unaware that something terrible escaped with them.


Author(s): J A Henderson
A day out with his dad Gordon turns into a nightmare for Bobby Berlin when something shocking happens that leaves Dad thinking it's 1977 and he's really 14.