Maia Wojciechowska was born in Warsaw, Poland. After the German invasion of their country at the start of World War II, the family fled to France, and later joined Maia's father, chief of staff of the Polish Air Force, in England. After the war, they emigrated to the USA, settling in Los Angeles, California. In 1950, Maia married Selden Rodman, an author, with whom she had a daughter; they later divorced, and she married and divorced a second time. She became an award-winning author of 19 children's books, beginning with Market Day for Ti André in 1952. Her best known work probably is Shadow of a Bull (1964), which won the Newbery Medal and praise from her friend Ernest Hemingway. In addition to writing, she worked as professional tennis player and instructor, a private detective, and a translator for Radio Free Europe.