Alison Baillie was born and brought up in Yorkshire by Scottish parents. She studied English and Philosophy at the University of St Andrews and then taught English in Edinburgh secondary schools for twenty years. She has taught English as a Foreign Language in Finland and Switzerland, where she now lives. It was only when she retired from teaching full-time that she wrote her first novel Sewing the Shadows Together, based partly on her time teaching in Portobello. She’s now just finished the first draft of her second novel, which seems to be taking nearly as long to write as her first one.