James Leck

James Leck

Dartmouth, NS

The Arthur Ellis Award for Best Juvenile Crime Book (Short-listed, 2011)

The Hackmatack Children's Choice Award (Short-listed, 2012)

The Manitoba Young Reader's Choice Award (Short-listed, 2012)

The Diamond Willow Award (Short-listed, 2014)


The Further Adventures of Jack Lime (Kids Can Press, 2013)

The Adventures of Jack Lime (Kids Can Press, 2010)


Intermediate Fiction (Ages 10-14)


James Leck was born in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, in 1973. At the time, his hobbies included eating, sleeping and pooping his pants. Since then, much has changed.

He has worked as a high school teacher in Canada, Japan and Kuwait, and has had the good fortune to travel extensively throughout the world.

Three things influenced him to write mysteries: Scooby Doo, Inspector Jacques Clouseau and Sherlock Holmes. However, his teenage private eye, Jack Lime, is based on the hard-boiled detectives of the 1940s and ’50s.

Currently, James lives in Dartmouth with his wife and two children. He still enjoys sleeping and eating but has moved beyond pooping his pants.

The first book in the Jack Lime series, The Adventures of Jack Lime, was shortlisted for the Manitoba Young Readers’ Choice Award, the Hackmatack Children’s Choice Book Award, and the Arthur Ellis Award for Best Juvenile Crime Book. It was selected as one of the Top Ten First Novels for Youth by Booklist Magazine. The second book in the series, The Further Adventures of Jack Lime, was released on April 1, 2013 (no foolin’). The Further Adventures of Jack Lime was selected as a Best Bet book for 2013 by the Ontario Library Association and was shortlisted for the 2014 Diamond Willow Award.

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Mystery Writing Workshop with James Leck

James Leck has taught at the middle school and high school levels in Japan, Kuwait and in Nova Scotia. He also has extensive presentation experience, having appeared at schools as a guest speaker in Kuwait, Hong Kong, Ottawa, Toronto, New Brunswick and throughout Nova Scotia over the past three years as well as teaching creative writing to adults and teens at the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design. During school visits, James runs a one hour writing workshop in which the students begin to create their own mystery, applying the techniques that he uses as a published author. Each group will be provided with worksheets that take the students through the planning process and include additional activities that can be used by the teacher at a later date. James also gives students an inside view into the world of publishing, focusing on the need for writer’s to constantly edit their work and listen to thoughtful advice from mentors. Typically, James works with students from grades four to eight, however he has presented to high school students and lower elementary age students as well. As a former teacher, James is flexible and can adapt his presentation to suit the needs of students with different abilities and ages.

Presentation type: Workshop

Recommended levels: Junior (4-6), Intermediate (7-8)