Maggie Allder was born in 1951 in rural Cambridgeshire, the second of four daughters, to parents who might have been considered mildly rebellious for their time. Her mother came from a middle class family, her father from an urban working class family, and both were taking an unusual route through life when they chose to work in the Land Army during the war. Their marriage was a love match that thrived despite their very different backgrounds, until her father's untimely death when Maggie was 14 years old. The environment in which the girls were raised was one of deep love, acceptance, and a grounding in values of equality and generosity. Educated at King Alfred's College in Winchester, the Presbyterian School of Christian Education in Richmond, Virginia, and later Reading University, Maggie spent her working life teaching in one comprehensive school in Hampshire.
Although an atheist as a teenager, her spiritual life has been important to her since her college days, and has taken her to various churches and denominations until she finally found her home among Quakers. As well as writing, Maggie's interests have often brought her into contact with various disadvantaged and troubled communities, from drug addicts to homeless people in Britain and from a black ghetto church in Richmond to a poor white rural community in the Southern Appalachians and a Blackfeet reservation in Montana.
Maggie has been involved with the organisation Human Writes which concerns itself with befriending prisoners on America's death rows through letter writing, since 2008. Maggie now lives in retirement in Hampshire, but still enjoys travel and continues wit her friendships with death row prisoners.
Review On Amazon UK: "Once I had started the book and really got through the first few chapters I was, in the overused phrase, 'unable to put it down'. Setting the book just slightly in the future was a good idea as the scene was similar enough to today's world but with the future setting to be relevant and believable if not frightening. I suppose that is the abiding thought of the book that we are about to enter a rather frightening time in this country and perhaps not just in the UK. I have just read on the Internet that one of the States of the USA is researching using a new gas a Nitrogen based gas (new in as much they have never used it in this context before) for their executions. I thought that the Epilogue was quite inspired as it reflects what happened to the main protagonist and showed that what happened in the past will continueâ¦.. This book deserves a mass audience."
2nd Amazon Review: "This is an interesting book set in a dystopian near-future. It is frighteningly easy to see how our society could develop in such a way. The characters are well drawn. They handle the dilemmas caused by their convictions and beliefs within the constraints of the new society in believable and convincing ways. The style of writing and excellent editing makes the book very easy to read. The story is utterly believable and the book is hard to put down as the main protagonist slips ever further into the complications and difficulties thrown in her way as she follows her beliefs into untenable places. An excellent read."
3rd Amazon Review: "I found this a highly original book because of its underlying but never cloying spirituality, but it is also full of profound human insight and is absolutely gripping. Once started I could not put it down. Early on, the author skilfully conveys a sense of something sinister that lies behind the apparent ordinariness, and as the plot unfolds we are held absolutely in suspense. I thoroughly recommend it as not to be missed."