Born in 1951 in Stratford, Ontario, Stratton first found his works published whilst he was still in high school. His first play was called ‘The Rustin Heart’, published in the magazine ‘Alphabet’. He studied at the Victoria University in the University of Toronto where he focused on drama and acting specifically.
However, whilst pursuing the acting side of theatre, he also spent his time writing and thus, in 1977, his first true play was produced, ‘72 Under the 0’. It was only a short time after this that he became a writer full time due to the success of another play called ‘Nurse Jane Goes to Hawaii’.
In 1982, Stratton moved to New York City to work in the Playwright Unit of Lee Strasberg’s Actors Studio. Whilst with the unit, Stratton produced an adaptation of Célimare and wrote a new play called ‘Papers’. After a few years, Stratton returned to Canada, moving to Montreal, where he wrote ‘Bag Babies’ and adapted Dracula for the Skylight Theatre.
In the 90s, Stratton found himself as the head of the Drama Department at the Etobicoke School of the Arts but the duties of teaching took away from his creative time, thus meaning he returned to full-time work swiftly. Stratton has since spent his time producing various books and works from ‘Leslie’s Journal’ in 2000 to Chanda’s Secrets in 2004, which won multiple awards. Other books published since include Chanda’s Wars in 2008, Borderline in 2010, and The Grave Robber’s Apprentice in 2012.
Chanda’s mother is not herself, her younger sister is acting out, and her best friend needs help. A powerful story set amid the African HIV/AIDS pandemic. In this sensitive, swiftly paced story, readers will find echoes of To Kill a Mockingbird as Chanda, a 16-year-old, astonishingly perceptive girl living in the small city of Bonang in Africa, must confront the undercurrents of shame and stigma associated with HIV/AIDS.
Through his artful style and dramatic storytelling, Allan Stratton captures the enduring strength of loyalty, the profound impact of loss, and a fearlessness that is powered by the heart. Above all, it is a story about living with truth. Proceeds from the sale of this book will be used to support organizations working to better the lives of Africans living with HIV/AIDS.