James Agapoff was born in Santa Rosa, California, and spent a majority of his youth on his family vineyard in Calistoga. As a child, he explored the Napa Valley hillsides, writing poetry, reading and dreaming about dragons. Some of his favorite books growing up included the Tao Te Ching, Ringworld, The Lord of the Rings trilogy and C.G. Jung’s Man and His Symbols.

Despite James’s desire to be a dragon when he grew up, he resigned himself to a career in psychiatry and writing. Inspired by his own experiences in Kenya, California, New York and other fantastic places, he wrote his first novel, Black Scales, Book I of The Dragons of Apenninus. James’s clinical work and love for scaly things continues to inspire him today.