Derek Marlowe was born in London in 1938. He was a novelist, playwright and screen writer. A Dandy in Aspic, his first novel, was originally published in 1966 and became an international bestseller. It was translated into 15 languages and Marlowe himself adapted the book into a film starring Laurence Harvey and Mia Farrow. He was the author of eight further novels, including The Disappearance, which was originally published as Echoes of Celandine and became a film starring Donald Sutherland. Marlowe had one son, Ben, and died in 1996 at the age of fifty-eight.