Max Kruse was born in 1921, the youngest of seven children of the sculptor Max Kruse and his wife Käthe Kruse, a well-known dollmaker. He briefly studied Philosophy and Business economics at the University of Jena until it was shut down due to the Second World War. After the war he worked as a freelance ad writer and later as an author.
Besides writing he was part of the advisory council of the Giordano Bruno Foundation.
He lived in Penzberg with his third wife.
Probably his most famous work is Urmel aus dem Eis. It is widely recognized and referenced in Germany, especially the TV-adaption by the Augsburger Puppenkiste and the Hessischer Rundfunk. Based on this novel there is computer-animated feature film Impy's Island.
Max Kruse wrote over 50 books which include the following works: