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About the authors

Sophie Masson

SOPHIE MASSON, author of Emilio

Born in Jakarta, Indonesia, of French parents, Sophie Masson came to Australia at the age of 5. Sophie grew up between worlds, and between languages, an experience which has informed her work. Her books have been shortlisted or won many awards, including The Hunt for Ned Kelly, winner of the Patricia Wrightson Prize for children’s fiction in the NSW Premier’s Literary Awards(2011), and shortlisted in the Book of the Year category in the same Awards; The Hand of Glory, winner of the Young Adult category in the 2002 Aurealis Awards for Science Fiction and Fantasy; and Snow, Fire, Sword, shortlisted in three categories in the 2004 Aurealis Awards for Science Fiction and Fantasy. Sophie is married with three grown-up children. She lives in country New South Wales with her husband David Leach.

Sophie says:

‘The Mexican drug war has claimed more than 40,000 lives since 2006 and shows no sign of letting up. Though Mexico is a country which has been steadily rising in prosperity in the last few years, and though in other ways, it is a wonderful and exciting place to be, with a rich, deep culture and a strong joie de vivre, the drug war has caused deep trauma to the Mexican population. This war is both a conflict between rival cartels/gangs battling for supremacy, and a war between them and Mexican government forces.
‘I have followed events in Mexico for some time. I have had a long-standing personal interest in the culture of this extraordinary country ever since I was a child and first devoured books about the great pre-Columbian empires of Mexico. My son Xavier has also spent extended periods in Mexico, and through him I have come to a better understanding of what was happening there, and just how the drug war affects family life and people’s everyday dealings. Nothing is guaranteed. Nothing can be taken for granted. It is that feeling which underlies Emilio; the feeling of what happens when a nightmare that’s always hovered at the edge of your vision suddenly becomes a lived reality.’