Harry Carmichael was born Leopold Horace Ognall in Montreal, Canada, on June 20, 1908. Educated in Scotland, he worked in his father’s business and then for various newspapers as reporter and editor, an important source of authoritativeness for his mysteries featuring the reporter Quinn. He also spent four years as an efficiency expert—the British say “engineer”—for the government; most of his life, however, was spent as a full-time freelance writer. Carmichael loved writing and said that he could not imagine a better way to live. Married in 1932, he had three children, two sons and one daughter, by his wife, Cecelia. One of his books, Department K (1964), was made into a film, Assignment K (1968), featuring Michael Redgrave. Carmichael continued to write up to his death on April 12, 1979, in Leeds.