Robert Barnard, (a.k.a. Bernard Bastable) who was born in Essex on 23 November, 1936. Educated at the Royal Grammar School in Colchester and at Balliol College, Oxford, taking his Ph.D. from the University of Bergen, Norway, in 1972, he spent many years as a distinguished academic while establishing himself as one of today's most distinguished crime writers. The Guest of Honor at 1998's Malice Domestic mystery conference, recipient of the CWA's Golden Handcuffs Award, several times nominated for the Edgar Allan Poe Award, Barnard maintains he writes only to entertain. It is hardly fair that a man aso gifted as a writer should be equally skilled as a speaker, but so it is. Barnard has graced many literary events, delivered many fine lectures, and generously boosted the works of authors he admires.