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Heather Dune Macadam and her horse

About Heather

Heather Dune Macadam began her career as a performance artist and dancer with the Martha Graham Contemporary Dance Company. After an accident prematurely ended her performing career she began writing. Dancers are fairly quiet people but since she discovered writing, she hasn’t shut up!

The acclaimed author of three Holocaust books, she is best known for 999: The Extra­or­di­nary Young Women of the First Offi­cial Jew­ish Trans­port to Auschwitz, a PEN Amer­i­ca Finalist in Biography (2021), Goodreads Choice Awards Finals, named one of the top twelve Holocaust books of all time by Reader’s Digest, and selected by Book Buzz and Ama­zon to be a Best Books of the Year. 999 has been translated into 19 languages and is now an award-winning documentary: 999: The Forgotten Girls, which Heather Dune Produced/Directed and wrote. Her first book, Rena’s Promise: A Sto­ry of Sis­ters in Auschwitz was also about the first transport. Her most recent book, Star Crossed is about the first transport of French Jewish women to Auschwitz.


Macadam's work in the bat­tle against Holo­caust denial has been rec­og­nized by Yad Vashem in the UK and Israel, the USC Shoah Foun­da­tion, the Nation­al Muse­um of Jew­ish His­to­ry in Bratisla­va, Slo­va­kia, and the Panstowe Muse­um of Auschwitz in Oswiec­im, Poland.


She is a member of PEN, sat on the board for Cities of Peace: Auschwitz and is the founder of the Rena’s Promise Foun­da­tion. Her writing has been fea­tured in Nation­al Geo­graph­ic, the Guardian, Sunday Times, NY Times and on NPR's All Things Considered, as well as oth­er major media outlets.

She has a rescue lamb, horse, Dalmatian and calico cat, though who rescued whom is up for debate.

Heather Dune Macadams books

Heather Dune ventured into fiction in 2000 and released THE WEEPING BUDDHA, a murder mystery based on the disappearance of Sam Todd, who was celebrating New Year’s Eve in the loft where Macadam and her loft mates lived in Chinatown, NY. Sam went for a walk and never came back. It was a finalist for the Nero Wolf Best Mystery-2002.

She has been published by The New York Times, National Geographic, The Guardian UK, The Daily Mail, Marie Claire, and Newsweek among other national and international publications, and was a semi-regular commentator on NPR’s All Things Considered.

Ms. Macadam holds a Masters in Creative Writing and has received a Presidential Grant for Research from Savannah College of Art and Design and a PEN American stipend. She and Rena were named Outstanding Writers of the Year in Hendersonville, North Carolina in 1995 or 1996–it was a long time ago, who can remember?

Ms. Macadam is the director and president of the Rena’s Promise Foundation and ran the Rena’s Promise Intl. Creative Writing Camp 4 Teens for 5 years, reaching out to children at risk and helping them discover their creative voices. Guest artists to the camp included: Melissa Banks,  Halley Feiffer, Persia Walker, Matthew Graham, Lucas Hunt, Dava Sobel, Simon Van Booy, and Simon Worrall.

She divides her time between the Hamptons in New York and Herefordshire, England, where she is a frequent visitor to the Hay Literary Festival and the Cornwall Arms.

Heather Dune Macadam should be included in that rare category of literary mystery masters such as Lawrence Block, Craig Holden, and Giles Blunt, whose lyrical prose and beautifully developed characters have a great deal to say about the troubled world we live in and its legacy of violence.

Kaylie Jones, author of Celeste Ascending and A Soldier's Daughter Never Cries

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