Phyllis Shand Allfrey was born in Dominica in the eastern Caribbean in 1908. She was a friend of Jean Rhys. Her novel, The Orchid House, was published in 1953 and her short story collection, It Falls into Place, in 2004. She lived in New York and London before returning to Dominica in the early 1950s. She was the co-founder of the Dominica Labour Party and served as a minister in the short-lived West Indies Federation (1958-62). She died in Dominica in 1986.