Lian Hearn studied modern languages at Oxford University and worked in London before settling in Australia. A lifelong interest in Japan led to the study of the Japanese language and many trips to Japan. This fascination culminated in Lian writing Across the Nightingale Floor which is the first in the Tales of the Otori series. Grass for his Pillow, Brilliance of the Moon and The Harsh Cry of the Heron follow. This series has been sold into 36 territories and has sales of two million copies. Film rights have been sold to Universal Studios for Kennedy Marshall. Lian Hearn has also written as Gillian Rubinstein.