Nicholas Shakespeare was born in Worcester, England, and spent his childhood in the Far East and South America, where his father served as a diplomat. After graduating from Cambridge University, he became a journalist for BBC Television and was literary editor of both the Daily and Sunday Telegraph between 1988 and 1991. He published an acclaimed biography of his friend, writer Bruce Chatwin, in 1999, and has made several biographies for television. His novels include The Vision of Elena Silves (1989), The High Flyer (1993), Secrets of the Sea (2007), The Dancer Upstairs (1995), Snowleg (2004), and Inheritance (2010). He writes articles for Granta, the London Review of Books, and The Times Literary Supplement, among others. His short stories were collected into a volume called Stories from Other Places in 2015. In 2013, he published a personal history of his aunt called Priscilla: The Hidden Life of an Englishwoman in Wartime France.