Georges Simenon (1903-1989) began work as a reporter for a local newspaper at the age of sixteen, and at nineteen he moved to Paris to embark on a career as a novelist. He went on to write seventy-five Maigret novels and twenty-eight Maigret short stories.
Anita Brookner was born in London, England on July 16, 1928. She received a BA in history from King's College London in 1949 and a doctorate in art history from the Courtauld Institute of Art in 1953. She went on to lecture in art at Reading University and the Courtauld Institute, where she specialized in eighteenth- and nineteenth-century French art. She became the first woman to be named as Slade Professor of Art at Cambridge University in 1967. Her first novel, A Start in Life, was published in 1981. Some of her other works include The Bay of Angels, The Next Big Thing, The Rules of Engagement, Leaving Home, and Strangers. Hotel du Lac won the Booker Prize for Fiction and was adapted for television in 1986. She has also written scholarly works about Jacques Louis David, Jean Baptiste Greuze, and Jean-Antoine Watteau.