Geraldo Valerio was born in Brazil and is now a Canadian citizen living in Toronto. He graduated from the School of Fine Arts at the Federal University of Minas Gerais, and in 2000 received a Master of Arts degree from New York University. He has illustrated more than 20 picture books for publishers in the UK, Canada, the United States, Portugal and Brazil.
Paul Van Loon
Paul van Loon is one of Holland's most popular writers. A favourite with the Dutch Children's Jury, he wins the prize almost every year and has sold over 1 million copies of his titles in the Netherlands alone.
I have been a writer and editor of children's non-fiction and educational books - including readers - for most of my career. Some of these books have been for African markets, following a period working in Kenya and another in Zimbabwe - with a short period in Namibia, too. I love finding out new things and writing about them, talking to experts in various fields - especially science - and generally sharing the enthusiasm people so often have for their life's work. I feel that way about writing. I enjoy writing fiction, too - especially readers for younger children. I'm currently working on a full-length novel and a non-fiction book for adults. I enjoy living in London, where I get the chance to hear good music, visit the theatre and take care of my garden. I have two cats, both very lazy.
Claudia works full time as a children's book illustrator and also runs her own workshops for children. She has over 20 years experience in design and illustration. She lives in Ferra, Italy.
Cecilia Vinesse was born in France but grew up between Tokyo, Japan and Greenville, South Carolina. Her obsession with Nora Ephron movies led her to New York City to attend Barnard College and then to live in New York for three years afterward, working in children's book marketing and living in an apartment furnished mostly by stacks of novels. Now she's in the UK where she splits her time holding late-night writing sessions, daydreaming in libraries, and having Buffy the Vampire Slayer marathons with her girlfriend Rachel and a pup named Malfi. She writes books about teenagers who wander around cities and fall in love and eat really delicious food.
Jan and Sara were already friends when one day they decided they wanted to write children's stories and it would be more fun to write them together. That was 18 years ago. Since then they've written over 160 stories - including some about ghosts, football, ghosts playing football and naughty gargoylz. Jan lives in Essex with her family and Sara lives in London with hers. They both have black cats who completely rule their lives. For more information, please visit Jan and Sara's website www.burchettandvogler.co.uk and follow them on Twitter at https://twitter.com/BurchettVogler. Keep up-to-date with the Sam Silver: Undercover Pirate blog at http://samsilverundercoverpirate.blogspot.co.uk.