Shirley Dowling, the author and illustrator of SCARLETT RED, is a native Floridian. She is the published author of a mainstream novel, LOVE NEEDS NO REASON (Avon Books, New York City, 50,000 copies sold), and of dozens of magazine articles sold in Florida’s Tampa Bay Area. SCARLETT RED is her first venture into children’s’ literature. Prior to her retirement, she enjoyed a full career in retail advertising as a writer, artist and Florida Broadcast Director for Belk, a large chain of department stores in the southeastern United States. The mother of two daughters and grandmother of two granddaughters, she is nearing completion of another mainstream novel. She lives and works on the coast of west central Florida.