Waldemar Lotnik was born in 1925 near Lublin, where he was brought up on his grandfather's farm until he was seven. His parents then fetched him to live in Kremenets, a garrison town in the Polish part of the Ukraine. After the events described in Nine Lives, he settled in London where he still lives. He is married with two children and four grandchildren and has not been back to Poland since he left in the summer of 1945.
Neal Ascherson was born in Edinburgh in 1932 and read History at King's College, Cambridge. A journalist with The Observer for thirty years, he reported from Asia, Africa and Central Europe. His many books include The Struggles for Poland, The Polish August, The Black Sea, and Stone Voices: The Search for Scotland. He is a regular contributor to both the New York and London Review of Books.