Maaza Mengiste was born in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia and lived in Nigeria and Kenya before settling in the United States. She is a Fulbright Scholar and a Pushcart Prize nominee. and among other places, her work has appeared in the New York Times, Granta, Callaloo Journal, The Granta Anthology of the African Short Story, Lettre Internationale, and on BBC Radio 4. Her debut novel, the critically acclaimed Beneath the Lion’s Gaze, has been translated into several other languages and has appeared on several publications' “Best of 2010” lists, including Publishers Weekly and the Christian Science Monitor. It was named one of the ten best contemporary African novels by the Guardian. She was the Runner-up for the 2011 Dayton Literary Peace Prize, and a finalist for a Flaherty-Dunnan First Novel Prize, an NAACP Image Award, and an Indies Choice Book of the Year Award in Adult Debut. She currently lives in New York City.