Sandra Paretti was the pen name of Irmgard Schneeberger. She was born in Regensburg, Germany and grew up on the nearby Oberen Wöhrd, one of the islands in the Danube. She studied music and German literature in Munich, Paris, and Rome. In 1960, she earned a doctoral degree from Ludwig-Maximilian University and then worked for several years as a journalist for a Munich newspaper. Following the success of her 1967 debut historical novel Rose und Schwert (Rose and Sword), she became a full-time writer. Several of her books were adapted for German television, and she became one of the most widely-read authors in the country. She also published a memoir, Mein Regensburger Welttheater (My Regensburger World Theater (1989). She married Hannes Looser, a Swiss businessman, designer, and graphic artist, and lived in Zurich. She died by suicide in 1994 and her self-written obituary appeared in the newspaper Neue Zürcher Zeitung.