Beth Norman is the daughter of two World War II veterans. Her father served with the U.S. Army in Europe in 1944; her mother was in uniform with the U.S. Coast Guard. Beth began her professional career as a registered nurse before turning to the study of history and writing. She received her Bachelor of Science degree from Rutgers University (where she and Michael met and were married). She earned her graduate and doctoral degrees from New York University, then joined the tenured faculty there in 1998. She currently is a professor in the Steinhardt School of Culture, Development and Education where she teaches history, writing and research design in the Department of Humanities and Social Sciences.
In 1990, Beth published her first book, Women at War: The Story of Fifty Military Nurses Who Served in Vietnam 1965-1973, (University of Pennsylvania Press). She followed this with We Band of Angels: The Untold Story of American Women Trapped on Bataan by the Japanese (1999, Random House.) Both books are still in print. Her work on We Band of Angels led her to look at the larger story of the battle for Bataan and the Bataan Death March, an inquiry that led to Tears in the Darkness. She has won a number of awards for her work, among them an Official Commendation from the Department of the Army, and a Certificate of Appreciation from the New Jersey Department of Military and Veterans Affairs.
Michael and Elizabeth Norman spent ten years researching and interviewing for "Tears In The Darkness." They made four trips to Asia and crossed America several times for the book. They have two grown sons, Joshua and Benjamin, and a daughter-in-law, Rachel Cahn Norman. For most of their married life, the Normans have lived in Montclair N. J.