John D. Fitzgerald was born in Utah and lived there until he left at eighteen to begin a series of interesting careers ranging from jazz drummer to foreign correspondent. His stories of The Great Brain were based on his own childhood in Utah with a conniving older brother named Tom. These reminiscences led to eight memorable Great Brain books. John D. Fitzgerald also wrote several best-selling adult books, including Papa Married a Mormon. He died in Florida, his home of many years, at the age of eighty-one.