David Blakesley is a writer and naturalist who has been passionate about wildlife since childhood. The Island Where Dinosaurs Roamed is David’s first children’s novel and reflects his love for the Isle of Skye, its wildlife and amazing fossils. The book is illustrated by his wife Tharada. David is a regular visitor to Staffin Dinosaur Museum on the Isle of Skye and has spent many hours exploring the island’s remote shores.
In recent years, David has written a series of picture books with Widgit symbolised text about the natural world for younger children with special educational needs, and a series of guides to help parents, carers and teachers engage children with the countryside. These books were published by Autism and Nature, an organisation founded by David and Tharada in 2012.
For many years, David was involved in research on the restoration of tropical forests and he has co-authored a number of books for practitioners on restoring natural habitats, including tropical forests.
Morten Schmidt Hansen was born in Horsens, Denmark in 1976. Went to Stirling University in Scotland, and decided to stay after graduation in 2002.
Having enjoyed Skye since first visiting as a child, Morten decided to move there in 2011, due to the incredible combination of sea and mountains. Mountaineering has been a part of Morten’s life for a long time, and Skye presented the perfect opportunity to start climbing on the Cuillin hills. Thanks to modern technology, a mobile camera was ever present on these trips. After a while, camera gear and tripod got lugged up the mountains too.
Morten has always been interested in photography. The landscape and light on the island gave it an extra push needed to take it seriously. This book is the culmination of 6 years photography.
Adventurer, sailor, skier, entrepreneur and former member of the Territorial SAS, Ruaraidh Hilleary has led an exciting life. His Memoirs cover his idyllic childhood in the Isle of Skye in the 1930s, schooldays at Eton during the war, followed by postings with the Scots Guards that included Trieste and the bombed ruins of Cologne. He has canoed the Zambezi river, nearly fallen into a crevasse in the Swiss Alps and experienced the Cresta Run and the bobsleigh in St Moritz, without brakes.
His professional life has been equally intrepid. Ruaraidh sold cutlery in Zimbabwe, insurance in London, smoked salmon in Paris, cashmere in
Spain and even Highland Wine in Scotland. He also owned and ran a caravan park near Lossiemouth in the 1970s and has helped develop a fish farm with the Jethro Tull rock star Ian Anderson and a wind farm in partnership with the Edinbane crofters, both in Skye, where he now lives. Ruaraidh’s book documents a life filled with challenges, risks, much laughter and some sadness.
Ruaraidh Hilleary died in 2021 at the age of 95.