Matthew John Reilly (born 2 July 1974) is an Australian action thriller writer. His novels are noted for their fast pace, twisting plots and intense action.
Reilly was born on 2 July 1974 in Sydney, New South Wales, the second son of Ray and Denise. He grew up in Willoughby, an affluent suburb on the lower North Shore of Sydney, New South Wales, Australia.
Reilly graduated from Sydney's St Aloysius' Collegein Milsons Point, in 1992. Reilly then went on to study Law at the University of New South Wales, where he was also a contributor to the student law society publication "Poetic Justice".
Reilly wrote his first book, Contest, at the age of 19 and self-published it in 1996. It was rejected by every major publisher in Australia, leading Reilly to self-publish 1000 copies using a bank loan. Reilly was discovered when Cate Paterson, a commissioning editor from Pan Macmillan found a self-published copy of Contest in a bookstore. Pan Macmillian signed Reilly to a two-book deal. Reilly wrote his second book, Ice Station, while studying at the University of NSW. It was quickly picked up by publishers in the U.S., U.K. and Germany.
He has since sold over 4 million copies of his books worldwide, in over 20 languages. Scarecrow and the Army of Thieves was the biggest-selling fiction title in Australia in 2011. Two more of Reilly's books have been the biggest-selling Australian titles of their years of release: Seven Ancient Wonders (2005) and The Five Greatest Warriors (2009).
In 2007, Reilly wrote a half-hour television script titled Literary Superstars. The script was picked up by Darren Star (Sex and the City) and bought by Sony Pictures for the ABC Network. Jenna Elfman signed on to play the lead role. The pilot episode was at the casting stage when the 2007-2008 Writers Guild of America strike began, paralyzing Hollywood. The pilot was placed on indefinite hiatus before ultimately being dropped by the ABC.
Reilly owns several movie prop reproductions such as a life-size statue of Han Solo frozen in carbonite from Star Wars, a golden idol from Raiders of the Lost Ark, and a DeLorean DMC-12 from Back to the Future. A big fan of Hollywood blockbusters, Reilly hopes to one day direct a movie adapted from one of his own books. In 2004 Reilly married his childhood sweetheart, Natalie Freer. Freer attended a nearby high school, Loreto Kirribilli and also went to the University of New South Wales, where she studied Psychology. Reilly attributes Freer as encouraging him to self-publish his first book. In early December 2011, whilst Reilly was in South Australia on a book tour promoting Scarecrow and the Army of Thieves, Natalie, who had suffered from anorexia and depression, booked in to a hotel in the Hunter Valley, New South Wales and committed suicide. Reilly subsequently cancelled his remaining book tours and announced his intention to take a break from online communications for a while.
- Contest (1996; republished in 2000)
- Temple (August, 1999)
- The Tournament (November, 2013)
- The Great Zoo of China (2014)
- See Scarecrow Series
- Ice Station (August, 1998)
- Area 7 (October, 2001)
- Scarecrow (November, 2003)
- Hell Island (2005)
- Scarecrow and the Army of Thieves (October, 2011) - Scarecrow Returns in the United States.
Jack West JrEdit
- See Huntsman Series
- Seven Ancient Wonders (October, 2005) - 7 Deadly Wonders in the United States.
- The Six Sacred Stones (October, 2007)
- The Five Greatest Warriors (October, 2009)
- The Four Legendary Kingdoms (October 2016)
Hover Car RacerEdit
- Hover Car Racer (2004) - Full Novel
- Crash Course (2005)
- Full Throttle (2006)
- Photo Finish (2007)
- Troll Mountain (2014) - Intially released as a three-part e-book series
- Troll Mountain Episode I (April 8th, 2014)
- Troll Mountain Episode II (April 15th, 2014)
- Troll Mountain Episode III (April 22nd, 2014)
Unpublished Short StoriesEdit
- Rewind / The Fate of Flight 700
- The Mine
- A Bad Day at Fort Bragg
- Altitude Rush
- The Rock Princess and the Thriller Writer
- Time Tours
- The Dead Prince
- Complex 13