Airini Beautrais was born in 1982 and grew up in Auckland and Whanganui. She studied ecological science and creative writing at Victoria University, and worked for several years as a science teacher. Dear Neil Roberts is her third book of poetry. Her first book Secret Heart was published by VUP in 2006, followed by Western Line (2011). Secret Heart was named as the Best First Book of Poetry in the Montana New Zealand Book Awards 2007. Airini lives in Whanganui with her partner and two children.