Lois Duncan was born on April 28, 1934 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. At the age of 13, her first story was published in the magazine Calling All Girls. As a senior in high school, she won Seventeen magazine's annual short-story contest. She continued to write for magazines after getting married and having children. She entered her young adult manuscript Debutante Hill in Dodd, Mead and Company's Seventeenth Summer Literary Contest and earned the grand prize, which was $1000 and a book contract. That first title was published in 1958. She published several young adult novels at that time including Love Song for Joyce and A Promise for Joyce, both under the pseudonym Lois Kerry. After her first marriage ended in divorce, she wrote freelance magazine articles and taught in the journalism department at the University of New Mexico. After she married for the second time, she started writing books again. Her young adult novels included Ransom, I Know What You Did Last Summer, Killing Mr. Griffin, Night Terrors, Stranger with My Face, Don't Look Behind You, and The Twisted Window. She also wrote works for younger readers including Silly Mother, The Circus Comes Home: When the Greatest Show on Earth Rose the Rails, Hotel for Dogs, News for Dogs, and Movie for Dogs. Her best-known non-fiction book, Who Killed My Daughter?: The True Story of a Mother's Search for Her Daughter's Murderer, is about her family's experiences following the murder of her youngest daughter in 1989. Her works have earned her several awards including three Parents' Choice awards, the Margaret A. Edwards Award in 1992, and the 2015 Grand Master Award by the Mystery Writers of America. She died on June 15, 2016 at the age of 82.