Simonetta Agnello Hornby is an Italian lawyer and writer born in Palermo in 1945, who later acquired British citizenship. She left Sicily at the age of 21 to get married in England. Simonetta Agnello Hornby studied English at Cambridge before returning to her native Sicily to complete a law degree. Armed with a Fullbright grant she moved to America for a year to furthered her studies. She returned to the UK to begin a legal career and to live and later marry the Englishman she had met in Cambridge with whom she had two children. She has been living in London since 1972, and is the President of the Special Education Needs and Disabilities Court.