Katie Hickman was born into a diplomatic family and spent the first 25 years of her life living in Europe, the Far East and South America. She studied English at Pembroke College, Oxford, after which she began to travel and to write. Her first book, Dreams of the Peaceful Dragon (1987), an account of a journey on horseback across the Himalayan kingdom of Bhutan, was followed by The Quetzal Summer (1992), a novel about love and death in the Andes. In 1993 she published a second travel book, A Trip to the Light Fantastic, an account of a year spent living and working with a Mexican circus, which was short-listed for the Thomas Cook Travel Book Award.
She then turned to writing history books: Daughters of Britannia: the Lives and Times of Diplomatic Wives (1999) which rose to number two in the Sunday Times Bestseller list, and 2003’s bestselling Courtesans.
Her most recent works are the highly-acclaimed novels The Aviary Gate and The Pindar Diamond, the first and second parts of a trilogy set in early seventeenth century Constantinople and Venice. The third and concluding novel, Winter’s Tale, is due for publication in early 2016.
She came to Borris is 2012 to talk about running away with a circus, and again in 2015 to be in a Soundings session with Lisa Hanngian and Dylan Haskins and discuss things that have shocked, amused and surprised her.