Mischa Damjan is the penname of the late Dimitrije Sidjanski, the cofounder, along with his wife Brigitte, of Nord-Sü Verlag, the Swiss-based parent company of North-South Books. He grew up in Belgrade, Yugoslavia, studied at Belgrade University and at the Sorbonne in Paris, and began practicing law. During World War II he was taken prisoner by the German army. After three years in captivity, he escaped to Switzerland, where he began writing. He wrote over twenty books for children and adults. His books for North-South include Atuk, The Little Seahorse and the Christmas Pearl, and The Big Squirrel and the Little Rhinoceros.