Bali Rai spoke at one of the discussions we convened and has no formal association with Cumberland Lodge. We do not pass on the contact details of past speakers and cannot always forward contact enquiries. 

Bali Rai is the multi-award-winning author of over forty young adult, teen and children's books. His writing is edgy and pushes boundaries, encouraging readers to think about and question the world around them. Extremely popular on the author visit circuit across the world, his books are widely taught in schools. He is also a regular speaker on panels, and at conferences, and patron for Soft Touch Arts, and a city-wide literature project, both in Leicester.

A passionate advocate for reading and literacy, he is an ambassador for the Reading Agency’s Reading Ahead project, was involved in the BBC’s Love to Read campaign, and has worked with the National Literacy Trust, Booktrust, RNIB and British Library amongst many others. He also writes and speaks around diversity, representation, and in defence of multiculturalism.

Bali is a politics graduate and was recently awarded an honorary doctorate of letters. His first novel, (un)arranged marriage was published in 2001, and his most recent YA novel, Web of Darkness, won three awards and received widespread acclaim. He is currently working on a new YA title, as well as two series for younger readers. His latest title, Stay A Bit Longer, is out soon.

For more information on Bali's work, please visit his website,