Elif Shafak was born in Strasbourg, France, in 1971. She is an award-winning novelist and the most widely read female writer in Turkey. Critics have acclaimed her as one of the most distinctive voices in contemporary literature in both Turkish and English. Her novels include The Bastard of Istanbul and her recent memoir, Black Milk. Her books have been translated into more than thirty languages. She is married with two children, and divides her time between London and Istanbul.