From an early age in Glasgow, Scotland, June Almeida loved learning about science and nature. A good student, she was especially interested in biology and won the top science prize at her school. Creative and observant, June noticed details that others often missed. She dreamed of attending university but economic hardships caused her to leave school at age 16. Still, June was determined to pursue her passion for science. She was hired by a local hospital to work in its lab, using a microscope to magnify and examine cells. Her work helped doctors treat patients. June later worked in labs in London and in Toronto. Her skill in using the electron microscope to examine cells and help identify viruses earned her promotion and respect in the science community. When June was 34 years old, she discovered the first human coronavirus. Her groundbreaking work continues to help researchers today in the fight against illnesses caused by viruses, including COVID-19.
Elisa Paganelli was born in Modena, Italy, and since childhood has considered books to be her best friends. After a career in advertising and as an entrepreneur, she now works as an illustrator, often accompanied by her beloved pets. Elisa’s award-winning books include The Highland Falcon Thief (named a Waterstones Book of the Month), The House with Chicken Legs, and Moon’s First Friends. Her aim is to be involved in sustainable projects, and she feels most at home when she’s out in the natural world. On her bedside table one will find a pile of psychology books, and very often one of her cats. Elisa now lives in the United Kingdom.