Rona Jaffe, a lifelong New Yorker, grew up on the Upper East Side of Manhattan. She was working as an editor with Fawcett Publications in 1958 when she published her first novel, The Best of Everything, which became a bestseller and was later adapted into a film. The novel electrified readers and reviewers with its authentic description of the struggles of ambitious, intelligent women in the working world and in their relationships with men. She was the author of 16 books, many of which also became bestsellers. She founded The Rona Jaffe Foundation, which presents annual awards to promising women writers of literary fiction, poetry, and creative nonfiction.