Georges Joseph Christian Simenon was born on 12 February 1903 in Liege, Belgium. He began work as a reporter for a local newspaper at the age of sixteen, and at nineteen he moved to Paris to embark on a career as a novelist. He started by writing pulp fiction novels and novellas published, under various pseudonyms, from 1923 onwards. He went on to write seventy-five Maigret novels and twenty-eight Maigret short stories.
Although Simenon is best known in Britain as the writer of the Maigret books, his prolific output of over 400 novels made him a household name and institution in Continental Europe, where much of his work is constantly in print. The dark realism of Simenon's books has lent them naturally to screen adaptation.
Simenon died in 1989 in Lausanne, Switzerland, where he had lived for the latter part of his life.