Francesca Simon, the author of Horrid Henry books, was born in St Louis; she grew up in California and attended both Yale and Oxford universities where she majored in medieval studies and Old English. Simon threw away a career as a medievalist and worked as a journalist, writing for the Sunday Times, Guardian, Mail on Sunday, Telegraph and Vogue (US). After she had her son Joshua in 1989, she started to write children's books full time. Simon is one of the UK's best-selling children's writers; she has published over 50 different books, including the immensely popular Horrid Henry series, which has now sold over twelve million copies. Francesca won the Children’s Book of the Year in 2008 at the British Book Awards for Horrid Henry and the Abominable Snowman. Horrid Henry is published in 24 countries and is also an animated TV series. She lives in London with her husband, son Joshua, and Tibetan Spaniel, Shanti.