Javier Cercas was born in 1962. He is a novelist, short-story writer and essayist, whose books include El móvil (The Motive, 1987), and Relatos reales (True Tales, 2000). In the 1980s he taught for two years at the University of Illinois, and since 1989 has been a lecturer in Spanish Literature at the University of Gerona. He is a regular contributor to the Catalan edition of El Páis. His Soldiers of Salamis, translated by Anne McLean, was awarded the Independent Foreign Fiction Prize for 2004.