About Sarah

Sarah Penny was born in Cape Town, South Africa, in 1970. She studied at the University of Cape Town, Rhodes University and St Andrews University, Scotland. She emigrated to the United Kingdom in 2003, and has lectured in English and Creative Writing at Brunel University ever since.

Her first novel, The Beneficiaries, was published in 2002 with Penguin South Africa, and was the runner-up for the Sunday Times Fiction Award. Set during The Truth And Reconciliation Commission, the novel explores a young woman’s attempt to come to terms with her traumatic past.

A second novel, The Lies We Shared, moves between Kenya, Zimbabwe and London, tracing a daughter’s attempt to discover her family’s secrets in the wake of her mother’s recent death. The Lies We Shared  was published in 2011.

Sarah is married to the historian, John Dickie, has three young children, and lives in North London. Her abiding interest is in African history, culture and languages, particularly within Southern and East Africa. Another lifelong fascination is African wildlife, animal behaviour and nature conservation.