Jean Webster(1875-1916) was born in Fredonia, New York, the daughter of Charles L. Webster, who was Mark Twain's publisher and business partner. Educated at Vassar College, she must have been a woman with a strong social conscience, perhaps aroused by her visits as a student to orphanages and other institutions (part of her economics course: her degree was in English and economics). She was always concerned for the plight of children who began life with such disadvantages and later she served on committees for prison reform and regularly visited Sing Sing jail. She wrote a number of novels that are now forgotten, but the last two,Daddy-Long-Legs(1912) and its sequelDear Enemy(1915), have survived both in book form, stage and film versions, and a British musical comedy Love from Judy produced in 1953. In 1915 Jean Webster married Glenn Ford McKinney. She died a year later, the day after the birth of her daughter. From the Hardcover edition.
Eva Ibbotson was born in Vienna, Austria, on January 21, 1925. She graduated from Bedford College, London with a degree in physiology in 1945 and the University of Durham with a degree in education in 1965. Her first book, The Great Ghost Rescue, was published in 1975. She primarily wrote children's book and romance novels for adults and young adults. Her other works include The Secret of Platform 13, The Star of Kazan, Which Witch?, Island of the Aunts, Dial-a-Ghost, The Ogre of Oglefort, A Company of Swans, and A Song For Summer. She won the Nestlï¿½ Smarties Book Prize for Journey to the River Sea. She died on October 20, 2010 at the age of 85.