Growing up in a publisher’s home in South Africa, Fiona Sussman fell in love with language and the written word at an early age. Her family’s house was always filled with manuscripts, books and colourful authors. This was during the apartheid era, and witnessing the brutal regime at work sensitised Fiona to the issues of injustice and racial prejudice. The illness and untimely death of her father led her to pursue a career in medicine and work as a GP. She emigrated from South Africa to New Zealand in 1989 where she still lives with her family, juggling her time between writing and running the charity hospital she and her husband established.