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Anne Perry was born in Blackheath, London, England, on October 28, 1938. She is a convert to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, sometimes casually called the Mormon Church, and has been a member for over forty years. Perry is a highly successful author with over 26 million books in print. Many of her books are historical murder mysteries. As of 2011 she has published over 60 novels.
One has only to glance at the date and location of Anne's birth to realize that her early years were unsettled. Germany invaded Poland in 1939, and Great Britain entered World War II by declaring war on Germany in September of that year. For months during 1940 the Germans bombed England, and especially London, intensely.
Perry faced other challenges. By age six she was seriously ill and near death. She lingered on in ill health and was sent to the Bahamas with a foster family to recover in a more favorable climate. Perry attributes the relocation for saving her life. The family moved to New Zealand, and there Perry rejoined her family who had also emigrated to New Zealand. Due to her illness and frequent moves, Perry missed several years of schooling and had to catch up. She had learned to read at four and loved books. This was a help to her, especially since she became ill again at age thirteen.
When Anne left New Zealand, she spent 5 years in California, where she found the Church and was baptized. Perry was always drawn to writing and was encouraged by her father. She was in her twenties and living back in England when she tried to fashion a first novel. She was in her late thirties when her first book was accepted for publication. To support herself she took various jobs, including clerical work and work as a flight attendant. Perry began writing mysteries set in Victorian London, a place and time full of opposites, especially in the juxtaposition of glamor and squalor. London had great energy at the time, as the largest city in the world, with goods and people of all sorts passing through. Her first novel accepted for publication was The Cater Street Hangman, released in 1979.
Anne now lives in Scotland. She has also written two fantasy books, Tathea, and Come Armageddon, which reflect her philosophies and beliefs. One can see her belief in the gospel of Jesus Christ in these works.
Perry has received a good deal of recognition for her work and has become an international and New York Times best selling writer. She has also received the following awards:
- Edgar Awards Recipient (2000): Heroes, the precursor to the hugely poplar WW1 series.
- Herodotus Lifetime Achievement Award