Monica Hughes was born in Liverpool, England on November 3, 1925. Before joining the Women's Royal Naval Service, she lived in Egypt as a child and went to school in Scotland. During World War II, she worked on breaking German codes. In 1952, she immigrated to Edmonton, Alberta, Canada and began working at Ottawa's National Research Council. She started writing survival stories and science fiction novels for young adults. Her works include the Isis trilogy and Hunter in the Dark. She won numerous awards including the Phoenix Award for literary merit. She was named to the Order of Canada in 2002. She died from a stroke on March 7, 2003 at the age of 77.