Hugh Walter Gilbert Cook was born in Essex, England in 1956. After spending his early childhood in England he moved to Ocean Island (now Banaba Island in Kiribati). His experiences of English castles and of life on an equatorial island later influenced his writing[1].

He moved to, and was educated in New Zealand. His first novel, Plague Summer was published when he was 24 in 1980.

Between 1986 and 1992 he wrote the ten-novel series The Chronicles of an Age of Darkness. Disappointing sales prevented the publication of further volumes (up to 60 were planned).

In 1997 he moved to Japan, and now lives in Yokohama with his wife and daughter and taught English.

He subsequently published mainly online, through his site, Zen Virus. His online works include poetry, short stories, "flash fiction", and several novels.

In 2005 he underwent chemotherapy and radiation treatment for cancer in the form of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. He wrote a medical memoir, Cancer Patient, telling of this experience.

Following a relapse, Hugh Cook died on the 8th of November, 2008, in a hospice in Auckland.

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