Gunnel Maria Ahlin was born to the family of a school principal in Orsa in Dalarna. She completed her upper secondary school leaving examination in 1938, going on to qualify as a teacher in 1943. Three years later she married the author Lars Ahlin and settled in Bromma outside Stockholm.
In the 1960s, she published a number of novels characterised by the mood of melancholy and lightness typical of that decade: Röster en sommar, 1960, Här dansar, 1962, Puls, 1964, and Refuge, 1967. Success came with her historical novel Hannibal sonen, 1974. Eight years later she made a comeback together with her husband with the publication of the novel Hannibal segraren, a sequel to her first novel about the Carthaginian general.
Additions by the editorial team 2011:
The above biography was first published in 1998. Since then, Gunnel Ahlin wrote two books about her husband: Lars Ahlin växer upp, 2001, and Nu ska vi ta pulsen på världen, 2005.
She was the recipient of the Kellgren Prize in 1982, the Aniara Prize in 1983, and the De Nio Winter Prize in 2001.