Clare Francis (b. 1946) is a bestselling writer of crime novels and thrillers, and a former yachtswoman. After studying at the Royal Ballet School and University College London, she set off on an unplanned five-year career in sailing. Francis sailed solo across the Atlantic, and took part in several high-profile races, including the Whitbread Round the World Race. After writing three works of nonfiction about her adventures, she started writing novels. Her first novel, Night Sky, was a number one Sunday Times bestseller and spent six weeks on the New York Times bestseller list. More thrillers followed, and her first crime novel, Deceit, was dramatized for television. Since then she has written crime, suspense, and historical literary fiction. Her books have been translated into twenty languages and published in over thirty countries. Francis is a Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire, a Fellow of University College London, and an Honorary Fellow of the University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology. For the past eighteen years she has been committed to the charity Action for ME, and she herself has had ME (also known as post viral fatigue syndrome, or chronic fatigue syndrome) for many years. Francis lives in London and the Isle of Wight.