She was born and grew up in Palermo. In 1967 she graduated in Law, and then she get married. Since then she began living abroad, at first in the USA and Zambia. In 1970 she settled in London, where she established a law office, Hornby and Levy, in Brixton (South London). It dealt with family and juvenile law, and was the first law office to deal with domestic abuses’ issues in England. Furthermore, Simonetta Agnello Hornby was Professor of Juvenile Law at University of Leicester, and was chairperson of Special Educational Needs and Disability Tribunal. In 2000, she began writing novels. In 2002, she published La Mennulara (Feltrinelli), La zia marchesa (2004), Boccamurata (2007), Vento scomposto (2009) and La monaca (2010). In 2012, she was the author, with Maria Rosaria Lazzati, of La cucina del buon gusto. Moreover, she published Camera oscura (Skira 2010) and Un filo d’olio (Sellerio 2011). Her books have been considered as best-sellers, and have been translated into several languages. Although being a lawyer, since 2008, she has mainly been working as a writer.