Tuesday, January 1, 2013

British Women Writers of Fiction 1910-1960 (J - K)

For more information about this list, please see the introduction, linked below.

You can download the entire list in a single PDF. Clicking on the link below will open a Google Docs page displaying the entire list in PDF. To save a copy of the PDF, just click on the little down arrow in the upper left. You can also print the list from the Google Docs page, but be warned that it now weighs in at 418 pages!


Updated 6/9/2017


[Current total: 1,893 writers]


JACBERNS, RAYMOND (1866 – 29 Jun 1911)
(pseudonym of Georgiana Mary Isabel Ash)
1890s – 1910s
Author of nearly 40 works for children, including an array of early girls' school stories which are, according to Sims & Clare, "required reading for the historian of girls' school stories." Jacberns was perhaps the first author to write a proper series of school stories. Works include Common Chords (1897), A Handful of Rebels (1901), The New Pupil (1902), A School Champion (1904, recently reprinted by Books to Treasure), Crab Cottage (1905), The Truant Five (1907), The Attic Boarders (1909), An Uncomfortable Term (1911), Tabitha Smallways, Schoolgirl (1912), and Robin (1915).

Jackson, Elaine
          see FREEMAN, GILLIAN

JACKSON, L[YDIA]. REVE (dates unknown)
1930s
Untraced author of a single novel, Lottery Luck (1938).

JACOB, NAOMI [ELEANOR CLARE] (1 Jul 1884 – 27 Aug 1964)
(aka Ellington Gray, aka Naomi Ellington Jacob)
1920s – 1960s
Novelist, actress, and memoirist. She performed in vaudeville before World War I, and later acted in films. Her debut novel, Jacob Ussher (1925), was a bestseller, but she became best known for her series of novels about the Jewish Gollantz family, in particular Four Generations (1934). She published more than 50 novels in all, veering more towards romance late in her career. She also published an array of memoirs, beginning with Me—a Chronicle about Other People (1933) and including Me—In War-Time (1940) and Me—and the Swans (1963), the latter about her friendship with Radclyffe HALL and Una Troubridge.

JACOB, VIOLET [AUGUSTA MARY FREDERICKA] (1 Sept 1863 – 9 Sept 1946)
(née Kennedy-Erskine)
1900s – 1920s
Poet and novelist whose tales of rural Wales and Scotland were highly praised in her day. Her five novels are The Sheepstealers (1902), The Interloper (1904), Irresolute Catherine (1908), The History of Aythan Waring (1908), and Flemington (1911). She also published several story collections, and a compilation of her late stories, The Lum Hat and Other Stories: Last Tales of Violet Jacob, appeared in 1982. Her Diaries and Letters from India, 1895-1900 were published in 1990. Jacob stopped writing following her son’s death in World War I.

JACOMB, AGNES E[LIZA]. (1866 – 12 Aug 1949)
(pseudonym of Agnes Eliza Jacomb Hood)
1900s – 1910s
Journalist and author of five novels—The Faith of His Fathers (1909), Johnny Lewison (1909), The Lonely Road (1911), Esther (1912) and The Fruits of the Morrow (1914).

JAEGER, MURIEL (23 May 1892 – 21 Nov 1969)
1920s – 1930s
Oxford friend of Dorothy L. SAYERS and Winifred HOLTBY. Author of historical and biographical non-fiction, as well as four novels, three of them early examples of science-fiction. The Question Mark (1926) is about a utopian future and may have influenced Aldous Huxley's Brave New World. The Man with Six Senses (1927) is a romantic novel incorporating ESP, which was reprinted in 2013. Retreat From Armageddon (1936) is only mildly futuristic in predicting World War II, but includes philosophizing about genetic engineering. Her third novel, Hermes Speaks (1933), seems more political in theme, about a world guided by a false prophet. Among her non-fiction is Experimental Lives: From Cato to George Sand (1932) and Before Victoria: A Study of English Social Life (1956). She also wrote one play, The Sanderson Soviet (1934). Jaeger was apparently the main source of encouragement to Sayers to write her first Lord Peter Wimsey mystery, in return for which she was its dedicatee.

JAFFÉ, [PHYLLIS] APRIL (1927 -              )
(married name Sebag-Montefiore)
1940s – 1950s
Author of three works of fiction. Satin and Silk (1948) and The Enchanted Horse (1953) are pony stories (see here for a bit more information), the former reportedly written during school holidays when the author was only 14. A third book, Portrait Unfinished (1954), might be an adult novel.

JAMES, GRACE (1864 – 1930)
1930s – 1960s
Playwright, folklorist, and children's author, known for her classic anthology Japanese Fairy Tales (1910), and for her "John and Mary" series of children's books, beginning with John and Mary (1935) and extending through 19 more volumes to John and Mary Revisit Rome (1963). Japan: Recollections and Impressions (1936) is a memoir of her youth in Japan.

JAMES, NORAH C[ORDNER]. (22 Sept 1901 – 19 Nov 1979)
1920s – 1970s
Author of nearly sixty novels, in which, according to Contemporary Authors, "sexual and romantic matters were dealt with frankly yet tenderly, and in which women's issues were portrayed from a feminist perspective." James came to fame when her debut novel, Sleeveless Errand (1929), was banned in Britain but became a bestseller nonetheless. That novel follows a suicidal bohemian through the sexual fringes of London, and earned some enthusiastic reviews alongside the scandalized ones. Among her many other works are Jealousy (1933), The Stars Are Fire (1937), The Gentlewoman (1940), Enduring Adventure (1944), set during the Blitz, The Father (1946), Pay the Piper (1950), The Shadow Between (1959), Small Hotel (1965), The Bewildered Heart (1973), and Love (1975). With her partner Barbara BEAUCHAMP she also published a cookbook, Greenfingers and the Gourmet (1949).

JAMES, PAULINE M. (29 Sept 1926 – 10 Mar 2011)
(married name Whibley, aka Polly Whibley)
1950s
Author of two girls' school stories—The Island Mystery (1950) and Challenge to Caroline (1952)—and, according to Sims & Clare, three other girls' stories, which I was unable to locate. She also wrote The Heights of Heidelberg (2011), published by the Elsie J. OXENHAM Society.

JAMESON, [MARGARET] STORM (8 Jan 1891 – 30 Sept 1986)
(married names Clarke and Chapman, aka William Lamb, aka James Hill)
1910s – 1970s
Author of more than 50 novels, Jameson's fiction was often politically engaged and varied widely in style. Her first novel was The Pot Boils (1919), but she reached a wider audience with her Triumph of Time trilogy—The Lovely Ship (1927), The Voyage Home (1930), and A Richer Dust (1931)—set in her native Whitby from the mid-1800s to the 1920s. Much of Jameson's work is at least partly concerned with war and its causes, including Three Kingdoms (1926) and Farewell to Youth (1928), as well as her second trilogy, Mirror in Darkness, comprised of Company Parade (1934), Love in Winter (1935), and None Turn Back (1936). With the approach of World War II, her work focused more overtly on current events. In the Second Year (1936) is a distopian novel about a Fascist takeover of England. Cousin Honoré (1940) attempts to examine the causes of the war via the microcosm of a village in Alsace. Europe to Let: The Memoirs of an Obscure Man (1940) is a collection of novellas about the rise of Fascism. The Fort (1941) used the form of a Greek drama in a tale of French and English soldiers trapped in a cellar as the Nazis approach. Cloudless May (1943) examines the capitulation of France, while The Journal of Mary Hervey Russell (1945) is a more personal, fictionalized diary, often considered among Jameson's best work. Jameson's later work The Green Man (1952) was an epic war novel and a bestseller, tracing nearly two decades of the leadup to the war and the war itself. Jameson also wrote several passionate works of non-fiction about war, and her acclaimed memoir, Journey from the North (1969), includes some reflections on both wars as well. Her final novel was There Will Be a Short Interval (1973).

Jardine, Rupert
          see MARSH, EILEEN

JARVIS, MARY ROWLES (1853 – 7 May 1939)
(née Rowles)
1890s – 1920s
Children's author and writer of devotional poetry and hymns. Fiction includes The Sliding Panel, or, The Miser of Raynham Farm (1890), The Rescue on Tempest Reef (1896), Three Girls and a Garden and Other Stories (1912), The Treasure Finders: A Forest Story (1912), Colin Courageous (1914), and Pleasing Stories (1916).

JEANS, ANGELA [AINLEY] (29 Nov 1899 – 27 Jan 1994)
(pseudonym of Violet Esmé Watt, née Holl)
1930s – 1950s
Wife of BBC producer & broadcaster John Watt, of whom she wrote a biography, The Man Who Was My Husband (1964). Author of about a dozen works of fiction, including six novels for adults—So Young, So Wise (1936), The Field Beyond (1938), Blessings on Otto (1940), Condemned to Life (1949), Lath and Plaster (1952), and For Worse (1954)—and several children's books, including Harry the Peke (1936), Miss Periwinkle (1950), Listen to the Wind (1955, later adapted as a play), Minerva: The Story of an Owl (1956), and The Kingdom of the Winds (1957). After the war, she and her husband renovated a property in Essex, and one wonders if Lath and Plaster, at least, might be inspired by this experience. She seems to have added the "Ainley" to her pseudonym for two of her children's titles.

JENKINS, [MARGARET] ELIZABETH [HEALD] (31 Oct 1905 – 5 Sept 2010)
(née Heald)
1920s – 1990s
Biographer and author of twelve novels, most famously The Tortoise and the Hare (1954), one of Virago's most passionately advocated reprints. The earlier Harriet (1934), based on a real-life crime, was reprinted by Persephone. Her other novels are Virginia Water (1929), The Winters (1931), Portrait of an Actor (1933), Doubtful Joy (1935), The Phoenix' Nest (1936), Young Enthusiasts (1947), Brightness (1963), Honey (1968), Dr. Gully (1972), and A Silent Joy (1992). She published several acclaimed biographies, including of Jane Austen (1938), Henry Fielding (1947), and Elizabeth I (1958), other works of non-fiction including The Princes in the Tower (1978) and The Shadow and the Light: A Defense of the Medium, Daniel Douglas Home (1982), and one children's book, Joseph Lister (1960). When she was already approaching 100 years of age, she published her memoir, The View from Downshire Hill (2004).

JEPSON, MARGARET (8 Mar 1903 – 1 Nov 2003)
(married name Birkinshaw, aka Pearl Bellairs)
1930s – 1940s
Daughter of author Edgar Alfred Jepson, sister of crime novelist Selwyn Jepson, and mother of novelist Fay Weldon. Author of seven novels, some of which appear to be thrillers. Titles are Miss Amagee in Africa (1932), Via Panama (1934), Velvet and Steel (1935), The Cups of Alexander (1937), Murderess? (1946), Her Destiny (1948), and Love Spurned (1948).

JERROLD, IANTHE (9 Dec 1898 – 31 May 1977)
(née Bridgman, married name Menges, aka Geraldine Bridgman)
1920s – 1960s
Author of more than 20 novels, including mysteries and romance. She was a member of the famous Detection Club, and her mysteries—two under her own name, The Studio Crime (1929) and Dead Man’s Quarry (1930), and two more under her pseudonym, Let Him Lie (1940) and There May Be Danger (1948)—have been reprinted by Dean Street Press. Her other fiction includes Young Richard Mast: A Study of Temperament (1923), Seaside Comedy (1934), The Dogs Do Bark (1936), The Stones Await Us (1945), The Coming of Age (1950), Love and the Dark Crystal (1955), My Angel (1960), and My Twin and I (1966).

JESSE, F[RYNIWYD]. TENNYSON (1 Mar 1888 – 6 Aug 1958)
(pseudonym of Wynifried Margaret Jesse, married name Harwood, aka Beamish Tinker)
1910s – 1950s
Playwright, journalist, historian, criminologist, and author of fourteen volumes of fiction, including three story collections. She was one of the few women war correspondents on the Belgian front during World War I, and published The Sword of Deborah (1919) about the women's army in France. She published numerous works of non-fiction about well-known crimes and trials, and some of her fiction is also focused on crime. Her most famous novels are The Lacquer Lady (1929), about a young woman at the Burmese Royal Palace, and A Pin to See the Peepshow (1934), about a famous murder case, both reprinted by Virago in the 1980s. Her other novels are The Milky Way (1913), The Man Who Stayed at Home (1915, as Beamish Tinker), Secret Bread (1917), The White Riband, or, A Young Female's Folly (1921), Tom Fool (1926), Moonraker, or, The Female Pirate and Her Friends (1927), Act of God (1937), The Alabaster Cup (1950), and The Dragon in the Heart (1956). Her collections are Beggars on Horseback (1915), Many Latitudes (1928), and The Solange Stories (1931). Early in World War II, Jesse and husband Harold Harwood collected their letters to friends in the U.S. and published them in two volumes, London Front (1940) and While London Burns (1942). Also in 1942, Jesse wrote an account of the courageous salvage of a tanker set on fire by Germans, called The Saga of the San Demetrio (1942). This was later made into a film. Sabi Pas, or, I Don't Know (1935) is subtitled "reminiscences" in the British Library catalogue, but I've found no details about it. Jesse was a great niece of Alfred Tennyson—her grandmother, Tennyson's sister, was engaged to A. H. Hallam at the time of his death. She was the sister of Stella Mary JESSE.

JESSE, STELLA MARY (1887 – 17 Jun 1942)
(married name Simson, aka Jane Starr, aka Stella Simson???)
1920s
Sister of F. Tennyson JESSE and author of Eve in Egypt (1929), about a young woman's travels. It's not certain if this is a novel or a travelogue. Her Times obituary says she also wrote novels as Stella Simson, but if so no trace of them seems to remain.

JOAN, NATALIE (c1886 – 7 Apr 1956)
(pseudonym of Natalie Joan Engleheart, née Davy)
1910s – 1930s
Founder of Moffats prep school and author of fiction and poetry for very young and for older children, including such works as The Hunter Children (1922), Jess of Top Farm (1924), The Forest Children (1927), and Three for Luck (1935), as well as two titles in the Ameliaranne series created by Constance HEWARD.

JOHN, KATHERINE (Apr 1906 - 1984)
(née Gower)
1930s
Critic, translator from Scandinavian languages into English, and author, with her husband Romilly John, of a single well-received mystery novel, Death by Request (1933), reprinted by Hogarth Crime in the 1980s. I wrote a bit about it here.

JOHNSON, [ANNA] DOROTHY [PHILIPPA] (13 May 1890 – 2 Feb 1954)
1920s – 1930s
Author of four novels, at least one of which, The Death of a Spinster (1931) appears to be a thriller. The others are Doris (1925), To Meet Mr. Stanley (1926), and Private Inquiries (1932).

JOHNSON, PAMELA [HELEN] HANSFORD (29 May 1912 – 18 Jun 1981)
(married names Stewart and Snow, aka Nap Lombard [with Gordon Neil Stewart])
1930s – 1980s
Playwright and author of more than 30 novels, of which The Unspeakable Skipton (1959), based on the life of the infamous Baron Corvo, is often regarded as her best. Her debut, This Bed Thy Centre (1935), was a controversial success about a young couple's sexual frustration as the result of a long engagement. Winter Quarters (1943) focuses on an army battery stationed in a small English village during World War II. She co-wrote two pseudonymous mysteries with her first husband—Tidy Death (1940) and Murder's a Swine (1943, aka The Grinning Pig). Among her other titles are World's End (1937), The Family Pattern (1942), An Avenue of Stone (1947), Catherine Carter (1952), An Error of Judgement (1962), The Survival of the Fittest (1968), and A Bonfire (1981). According to her ODNB entry, she nearly married poet Dylan Thomas in the mid-1930s. Instead, she later married novelist C. P. Snow.

JOHNSTON, MYRTLE (1909 - 1955)
1920s - 1950
Author of six novels of dark psychological drama—Hanging Johnny (1927), about "a misunderstood executioner," Relentless (1930), The Maiden (1932), The Rising (1939), Amiel (1941), about the horrors of war, and A Robin Redbreast in a Cage (1950), about an acquitted murderer.

JOHNSTON, PRISCILLA (16 Sept 1910 - 1984)
(married names Gill and Roworth)
1930s – 1940s
Daughter of calligrapher Edward Johnston, known for his lettering for the London Tube, and author of five novels, including The Narrow World (1930), set in a girls' school, and its sequel, Green Girl (1931), as well as That Summer (1933), Burnt Mallow (1936) and The Sound of Flutes (1947). Johnston married her own godfather, who was 26 years her senior, only to see him die of cancer in less than a year. You can read more about their relationship here.

JOHNSTONE, VICKI (dates unknown)
1940s
Untraced author of a single girls' school story, The Phantom Family (1948).

JOLY, MRS. JOHN SWIFT (17 Jun 1876 – 14 Jan 1946)
(pseudonym of Mary Totenham Joly, née Fitzpatrick)
1910s
Author of a single novel, Those—Dash—Amateurs (1918). Presumably the "Dash" indicates an expletive?

JONES, ADA ELIZABETH (1886 – 20 Jan 1962)
(married name Chesterton, aka John Keith Prothero, aka Anne Page, aka Mrs. Cecil Chesterton)
Sister-in-law of G. K. Chesterton, best known for her journalism about slum life, such as In Darkest London (1926). She published seven novels, most using her Prothero pseudonym—Motley & Tinsel: A Story of the Stage (1911), An Eye for an Eye (1917), A Prince of Vagabonds (1932), With Links of Steel (1932), Diamond Cut Diamond (1932), What Price Youth? (1939), and Pearl Beyond Price (1947). She also published poetry and travel writing, and co-wrote two plays. She was the founder of Cecil Houses for homeless women.

Jones, Annabel
          see BRAND, CHRISTIANNA

JONES, E[MILY]. B[EATRICE]. C[OURSOLLES]. (15 Apr 1893 – 30 Jun 1966)
(married name Lucas)
1920s – 1930s
Friend of some of the major literary and artistic figures of her day, including Romer WILSON, Rosamond LEHMANN, and Dorothy RICHARDON, and author of six novels. Her debut, Quiet Interior (1920), was praised by Katherine Mansfield, while Cyril Connolly described Helen and Felicia (1927), about two sisters and the complications when one of them marries, as a "moving and conscientious study of fondness written with sobriety and grace." According to Sharon Ouditt, The Singing Captives (1922) is "concerned with the impact of war and the postwar world on a well-to-do family." The Wedgwood Medallion (1923) focuses on family life and troubled love, but Ouditt notes of it, "Stability, propriety and tradition are set against breakdown and pretence in a world struggling with the impact of war and modernity." Inigo Sandys (1924) is set in postwar Cambridge. Her final novel, Morning and Cloud (1932), about a troubled romance, nearly didn't find a publisher, but artist Dora Carrington was an admirer. She also published As I Remember: An Autobiographical Ramble (1922).

JOPE-SLADE, CHRISTINE (CHRISTIANA) [VERNON] (1891 – 5 Jan 1942)
(married name Clark)
1910s – 1950s
Author of at least 20 novels, many of which sound like romances. My favorite title is The Little Girl Who Kept Fairies (1924). Others include Letters to My Unborn Son (1917), The Bread and Butter Marriage (1920), The Cuckoo's Nest (1922), The Madonna of the Clutching Hands (1927), Ice Cold Marriage (1932), and The Enchanted Swan (1952).

Joyce, L. E. Elliott
          see ELLIOTT, LILIAN ELWYN

JUDD, A[LICIA]. M[ARIA]. (1851 - 1929)
1890s – 1910s
London author about whom little is known apart from the titles of her six novels—A Daughter of Lilith (1899), Pharoah's Turquoise (1906), For a Woman's Memory (1908), A Soul's Burden (1911), Lot's Wife (1913), and The White Vampire (1914)—which presumably lean toward the supernatural?

KAMM, JOSEPHINE (30 Dec 1905 – 31 Aug 1989)
(née Hart)
1930s – 1970s
Novelist, historian, biographer, and children's author, best known for her pioneering young adult novels, including Out of Step (1962), about an interracial teen couple in London, and Young Mother (1965), about a pregnant teen. Kamm began her career with five adult novels—All Quiet at Home (1936), Disorderly Caravan (1938), Nettles to My Head (1939), Peace, Perfect Peace (1947), and Come, Draw This Curtain (1948). I reviewed Peace, Perfect Peace here. She also wrote two girls' career stories, Janet Carr, Journalist (1953) and Student Almoner (1955), as well as Daughter of the Desert (1956), a biography of Gertrude Bell, How Different from Us: A Biography of Miss Buss and Miss Beale (1958), Hope Deferred: Girls' Education in English History (1965), and Rapiers and Battleaxes: The Women's Movement and Its Aftermath (1966).

Kane, Julia
          see ROBINS, DENISE NAOMI

Karlova, Irina
          see CLAMP, HELEN MARY ELIZABETH

KAVAN, ANNA (10 Apr 1901 – 5 Dec 1968)
(pseudonym of Helen Emily Ferguson, née Woods, aka Helen Ferguson)
1920s – 1960s
A troubled writer who faced drug addiction and mental health issues. She published her first six novels—A Charmed Circle (1929), Let Me Alone (1930), The Dark Sisters (1930), A Stranger Still (1935), Goose Cross (1936), and Rich Get Rich (1937)—under her real name, after which (following one of several suicide attempts and a stint in rehab) she created a new persona named after a character in her second novel, and thereafter wrote entirely under that name. From that point, her work became more experimental and gradually evolved into science-fiction. Asylum Piece (1940) and Sleep Has His House (1948) deal with themes of insanity. Other titles are I Am Lazarus (1945), The Horse's Tale (1949), Who Are You? (1963), and Ice (1967). Since her death, three more previously unpublished novels have come to light—Mercury (1994), The Parson (1997), and Guilty (2007).

KAY, ANNE (dates unknown)
1930s
Untraced author of a single girls' school story, Girls of Deepdene (1937).

KAYE, BARBARA (4 Aug 1908 – 21 Feb 1998)
(pseudonym of Barbara Kenwick Muir, née Gowing—not to be confused with romance writer Barbara Kaye, born 1934, or with Marie MUIR, who apparently also wrote under the pseudonym Barbara Kaye)
1940s – 1970s
Wife of bookseller Percy Muir. She recorded their life together in two memoirs, The Company We Kept (1986) and Second Impression (1995). She also published more than 20 novels. Titles include Call It Kindness (1942), Home Fires Burning (1943), Pleasant Burden (1947), Black Market Green (1950), Festival at Froke (1951), Rebellion on the Green (1953), Neighbourly Relations (1954), Minus Two (1961), Steps in the Dark (1968), and The Passion-Flower Hedge (1972).

Kaye, Barbara (different from the above)
          see MUIR, MARIE

KAYE, M[ARY]. M[ARGARET]. (21 Aug 1908 – 29 Jan 2004)
(married name Hamilton, aka Mollie Hamilton, aka Mollie Kaye)
1930s – 1980s
Children's author, memoirist, and bestselling novelist, best known for The Far Pavilions (1978), an epic of the British Raj. Other novels include Six Bars at Seven (1940), Shadow of the Moon (1957, revised 1979), and Trade Wind (1963, revised 1981). She also published a series of mysteries set in exotic locales where she and her military husband were stationed, which were reprinted in revised editions in the 1980s. These include Death Walked in Kashmir (1953, reprinted as Death in Kashmir), Death Walked in Berlin (1955, reprinted as Death in Berlin), Death Walked in Cyprus (1956, reprinted as Death in Cyprus), Later Than You Think (1958, reprinted as Death in Kenya), The House of Shade (1959, reprinted as Death in Zanzibar), and Night on the Island (1960, reprinted as Death in the Andamans). Her early children's fiction appeared under the name Mollie Kaye. Her memoirs, which include her childhood and early married life in India, are The Sun in the Morning (1990), Golden Afternoon (1997), and Enchanted Evening (1999).

KAYE-SMITH, [EMILY] SHEILA (4 Feb 1887 – 14 Jan 1956)
(married name Fry)
1900s – 1950s
Author of more than three dozen works of fiction, including novels of rural life in Sussex and Kent, infused with her Christian faith, which may have formed part of the inspiration for Stella GIBBONS's satire of such fiction in Cold Comfort Farm. Titles include The Tramping Methodist (1908), The Three Furlongers (1914), Sussex Gorse (1916), Green Apple Harvest (1920), Joanna Godden (1922), A Wedding Morn (1928), The Village Doctor (1929), The History of Susan Spray, the Female Preacher (1931), Gallybird (1934), The Valiant Woman (1939), Tambourine Trumpet and Drum (1943), The Lardners and the Laurelwoods (1948), and The View from the Parsonage (1954). Her memoirs are Three Ways Home (1937), Kitchen Fugue (1945), which takes in her experiences living in "Bomb Alley" in Sussex during World War II, and All the Books of My Life (1956).

KEANE, MOLLY (MARY) [NESTA] (20 Jul 1904 – 22 Apr 1996)
(née Skrine, aka M. J. Farrell)
1920s – 1950s, 1980s
Author of fourteen novels in all, eleven of them, early in her career, under the pseudonym M. J. Farrell, often set in Irish country houses and featuring witty portrayals of family life, albeit with serious undercurrents. Titles are The Knight of Cheerful Countenance (1926), Young Entry (1928), Taking Chances (1929), Mad Puppetstown (1931), Conversation Piece (1932), Devoted Ladies (1934), Full House (1935), The Rising Tide (1937), Two Days in Aragon (1941), Loving Without Tears (1951, aka The Enchanting Witch), and Treasure Hunt (1951). Devoted Ladies is also known for its portrayal of a lesbian relationship only a few years after the Well of Loneliness trial. Following her husband’s death in 1946, Keane remained out of the limelight until her friend, the actress Peggy Ashcroft, helped her to publish a new novel, Good Behaviour (1981), which was widely acclaimed, nominated for the Booker Prize, and adapted for the BBC, after which Virago reprinted all of her earlier novels. She subsequently published two more novels, Time after Time (1983) and Loving and Giving (1988).

KEATE, EDITH MURRAY (c1867 – 22 Feb 1945)
1910s, 1930s
Author of a popular guide to Hampton Court Palace (1932), Keate also wrote seven novels—A Garden of the Gods (1914), A Wild-Cat Scheme (1930), The Jackanapes Jacket: A Thrilling Story of a Murder at Hampton Court (1931), The Mimic (1932), Demon of the Air (1936), The Mystery of Nelson's Coat: A Story of Greenwich (1936), and Demon Again (1937). She also published a biography of Admiral Nelson's wife (1939).

Keepel, Charlotte
          see TORDAY, URSULA

Keir, Christina
          see PULLEIN-THOMPSON, CHRISTINE

KEITH, FELICITY (dates unknown)
(pseudonym of a Miss Montserrat, first name unknown)
1930s
Untraced author of a single girls' school story, The Oakhill Guide Company (1933).

Keith, J. Kilmeny
          see MALLESON, LUCY BEATRICE

KELLINO, PAMELA (10 Mar 1916 – 29 Jun 1996)
(née Ostrer, later married name Mason)
1940s
Wife of James Mason for some years and mother-in-law of American pop singer Belinda Carlisle. Actress, screenwriter and author of four novels—This Little Hand (1941), A Lady Possessed (1943, aka Del Palma), about a woman who believes herself possessed by the wife of a pop singer, The Blinds Are Down (1944), and Ignoramus, Ignoramus (1946).

Kellow, Kathleen
          see HIBBERT, ELEANOR

KELLY, MARY [THERESA] (28 Dec 1927 -          )
(née Coolican)
1950s – 1970s
Author of 10 acclaimed mystery novels. The St. James Guide to Crime & Mystery Writers describes The Twenty-Fifth Hour (1971): "It tells of an Englishwoman holidaying in Normandy with a small barely illegal task to perform on the side. A story so mild as hardly to exist. The woman does later become involved in a plot concerned with an extreme Rightist organisation, but again this is pretty conventional and even tame. Yet one reads almost as eagerly as if the story had been put together by Alistair MacLean and the plot devised by Ira Levin because from her very first sentence Mary Kelly observed so meticulously, described so exactly and economically."  Kelly's other novels are A Cold Coming (1956), Dead Man's Riddle (1957), The Christmas Egg (1958), The Spoilt Kill (1961, reprinted by Virago), Due to a Death (1962, aka The Dead of Summer), March to the Gallows (1964), Dead Corse (1966), Write on Both Sides of the Paper (1969), and That Girl in the Alley (1974), after which she apparently stopped writing.

KENEALY, [MARY] ANNESLEY (1861 - 1927?)
1910s
Sister of Arabella KENEALY. Trained nurse and author of sensationalistic feminist novels, such as Thus Saith Mrs Grundy (1911), about a prostitute (supposedly based on a woman Kenealy had really met), The Poodle Woman (1913), about women's rights in divorce and separation, and A Water-Fly's Wooing (1914), which railed against interracial marriage. In 1915, after losing a slander case, she attempted suicide by taking poison while still in the courtroom.

KENEALY, ARABELLA [MADONNA] (11 Apr 1859 – 18 Nov 1938)
1890s – 1910s
Doctor, early feminist (albeit with powerfully essentialist views), and novelist. Titles include Dr. Janet of Harley Street (1893), about a lesbian doctor, A Semi-Detached Marriage (1898), Charming Renée (1900), King Edward Intervenes (1910), My Beautiful Neighbour (1911), and This Thing We Have Prayed For (1915).

Kendall, John
          see BRASH, MARGARET M[AUD].

KENNEDY, JOAN (12 Apr 1885 - 1965)
(pseudonym of Alice Mabel Gibbs, married name Morrison)
1920s – 1960s
Author of nearly 70 romance novels, including The Muck Pond (1923), Miss Lavender of London (1929), Ragged Orchid (1932), Magnolias in the Rain (1948), Flaming Days (1950), and Love in the Mist (1953), as well as a memoir, Myself the Pilgrim (1952).

KENNEDY, MARGARET [MOORE] (23 Apr 1896 – 31 Jul 1967)
(married name Davies)
1920s – 1960s
Playwright, screenwriter, and author of nearly two dozen novels. Her best known work was the massively successful The Constant Nymph (1924), about an eccentric family, which was also dramatized and filmed. She later published a sequel called The Fool of the Family (1930). Among her other novels are The Ladies of Lyndon (1923), Return I Dare Not (1931), A Long Time Ago (1932), Together and Apart (1936), The Feast (1950), Lucy Carmichael (1951), Troy Chimneys (1953), A Night in Cold Harbour (1960), The Forgotten Smile (1961), and Women at Work (1966). Where Stands a Wingèd Sentry (1941) is her memoir of the early days of World War II. The Feast (1950), sometimes considered Kennedy's best work, is set firmly in the immediate postwar, including concerns about rationing and the fact that the central catastrophe of the novel is brought about by a stray mine which has exploded a few months earlier. I wrote about it here.

KENNY, LOUISE M[ARY]. STACPOOLE (1885 - 1933)
(née Dunne)
1900s – 1910s
Author of nine novels described as girls' romances, including several historical novels. Titles are The Red-Haired Woman (1905), Love Is Life (1910), At the Court of Il Moro (1911), Carrow of Carrowduff (1911), The King's Kiss (1912), Daffodil's Love Affairs (1913), Our Own Country (1913), Mary: A Romance of the West Country (1915), and Heart of the Scarlet Fire (1916).

Kent, Helen
          see PETTMAN, GRACE

KENT, MARY (1877 - ????)
(pseudonym of Mabel Mary Powell Buckey, married name Andrews)
1940s
Author, with her husband (James Chapman Andrews, who wrote as Michael Kent), of a single mystery novel, The Armitage Case (1943).

Kent, Pamela
          see POLLOCK, IDA [JULIE]

KENYON, EDITH C[AROLINE]. (1854 – 21 Jun 1925)
1880s – 1920s
Author of nearly 60 volumes of fiction for adults and children, including several boys' school stories and six early collaborations with religious writer Richard Gilbert Soans. Among her numerous titles are Hilda, or, Life's Discipline (1881), Jack's Heroism: A Tale of Schoolboy Life (1883), Margaret Casson's Resolve: A Tale of Victory (1885), Eveline's Key-Note, or, In Harmony With Life (1890), The Mystery of the Brilliants (1896), A Girl in a Thousand (1904), A Nurse's Love Story (1907), Two Girls in a Siege: A Tale of the Great Civil War (1908), The Winning of Gwenora (1913), Derrick Orme's Schooldays (1913), Pickles, A Red Cross Heroine (1916), and Lady Satton's Granddaughter (1921).

KEOWN, ANNA GORDON (1897 – 29 Jan 1957)
(married names Seymour and Gosse)
1930s
Poet and author of four novels. The Cat Who Saw God (1932) is a comic novel about the Emperor Nero reincarnated as a cat living with an elderly spinster (no kidding). I wrote about it here. Mr. Thompson in the Attic (1933) is a grown-up school story set at a prep school on the south coast of England. Mr. Theobald's Devil (1935) is, according to an e-Bay listing, about a lazy parson who "laments that he, a human being to whom activity in any form is supremely distasteful, should be called upon to perform his duties in a parish completely given over to hills." Her final novel was Wickham's Fancy (1939), about which I've found no details. Her Collected Poems appeared in 1953. Her most famous poetic work is a sonnet called "Reported Missing," which was long studied in British schools. Keown's father-in-law was poet and author Edmund Gosse.

KERBY, SUSAN ALICE (4 Oct 1908 – 30 Jul 1990)
(pseudonym of Alice Elizabeth Burton, married name Aitken, aka Elizabeth Burton)
1930s – 1940s
Best known for her popular histories of life in various periods of British history, including The Elizabethans at Home (1958) and The Georgians at Home (1967), Kerby also wrote six earlier novels, some under her pseudonym. Miss Carter and the Ifrit (1945) is an unusual fantasy about a spinster in the dreary final days of World War II learning to enjoy life again with the help of a genie, while Mr. Kronion (1949) is about a Greek god defending English village life. The others are Cling to Her, Waiting (1939), Fortnight in Frascati (1940), Many Strange Birds (1947, aka Fortune's Gift), and Gone to Grass (1948, aka The Roaring Dove).

Kernahan, Mrs. Coulson
          see BETTANY, JEANNIE GWYNNE

Kernahan, J. G.
          see BETTANY, JEANNIE GWYNNE

Kerr, Felicity
          see BRADLEY, NORAH MARY

KERRUISH, JESSIE DOUGLAS (1884 - 1949)
1910s – 1930s
Author of four novels, one children's title, and a story collection. Best known for The Undying Monster (1922), about a family cursed by an unknown creature, which was filmed in 1942. Her two earlier novels, Miss Haroun al-Raschid (1917) and The Girl from Kurdistan (1918), are lighter adventure tales. Her final novel was The Hull of Coins (1931), about which I've found no details. Her first published work, The Raksha Rajah, or, The King of the Ogres (1911), was for children. Babylonian Nights' Entertainments (1934) were fantastic tales with Arabian themes. She published large amounts of short fiction in periodicals, but some of those may have been lost as a result of German bombing of the British Museum.

KEYNES, HELEN MARY (18 Jan 1892 – 26 Aug 1975)
(aka Clementine Hunter)
1910s, 1930s – 1940s
Author of six novels. The first two—The Spanish Marriage (1913) and Honour the King (1914)—written when she was in her early 20s, are described as romances. The other four appear to be mysteries or thrillers—those titles are Murder in Rosemary Lane (1936), Who Killed Jefferson Broome? (1937), Salute to the Brave: A Thrilling Story of the Gestapo in England (1940), and Queens Have Died Young and Fair (1947).

KIDD, BEATRICE ETHEL (12 Oct 1867 – 28 Jun 1958)
(aka Mark Winterton)
1910s
Secretary of the British Union for the Abolition of Vivisection and biographer of its head, Walter Hadwen. Kidd also published one novel, The Cassowary (1918), under her pseudonym.

Killin, Gladys Ellen
          see ADENEY, GLADYS ELLEN

KILPATRICK, FLORENCE [ANTOINETTE] (1888 – 1 Jan 1968)
(née Calvert, later married name Crowder)
1920s – 1940s
Author of nearly 30 novels, including a humorous series featuring a main character named Elizabeth—Our Elizabeth (1920), Our Elizabeth Again (1923), Our Elizabeth in America (1936), Elizabeth in Africa (1940), Elizabeth in Wartime (1942), Elizabeth to the Rescue (1942), Elizabeth the Sleuth (1946), and Elizabeth Finds the Body (1949). Other titles include Camilla in a Caravan (1925), Rift Valley: An East African Romance (1930), Getting George Married (1933), The Eldest Miss Grimmett (1936), Within Four Walls (1938), and Gentlemen Should Marry (1944).

KILROY, MARGARET (dates unknown)
1900s – 1910s
Untraced author of two early girls' school stories, The Little Torment (1909) and Study Number Eleven (1911).

KING, MAUDE EGERTON (8 Feb 1867 – 23 Apr 1927)
(née Hine, first name sometimes Maud)
1890s – 1910s
Poet and author of four novels and two story collections. Her most famous work is The Conversion of Miss Caroline Eden (1900), about a spinster who gains religious fervor and goes mad because of the evil of the world. Her other fiction is Round and About a Brighton Coach Office (1896), Studies in Love (1900), Christian's Wife: A Story of Graubünden (1902), The Archdeacon's Family (1909), and The Country Heart and Other Stories (1911). She and her husband worked to promote rural crafts in and around Haselmere.

KING-HALL, [OLGA] LOU (LOUISE) [ELISABETH] (22 Feb 1897 – 7 Jan 1985)
1930s – 1940s
Sister of novelist Magdalen KING-HALL and daughter of Olga KING-HALL. Author of four novels—The Well-Meaning Young Man (1930), Family Ship (1938), Fly Envious Time (1944), and The Sun Climbs Slow (1946). Fly Envious Time was a science-fiction novel set in the late 20th century and dealing with Eugenics and World War III. She also edited Sea Saga (1935), a collection of "the naval diaries of four generations of the King-Hall family."

KING-HALL, MAGDALEN (22 Jul 1904 – 1 Jan 1971)
(married name Perceval-Maxwell, aka Cleone Knox)
1920s – 1960s
Daughter of Olga KING-HALL and sister of Lou KING-HALL. Author more than a dozen novels, though still best known for her debut, The Diary of a Young Lady of Fashion in the Year 1764-1765 (1924), a humorous novel, written under her pseudonym, which at first was taken as a real 18th century diary. This was followed by a pseudo-memoir I Think I Remember (1927), which was subtitled "Being the Random Recollections of Sir Wickham Woolicomb, An Ordinary English Snob and Gentleman." Many later works were historical, including Life and Death of the Wicked Lady Skelton (1944), which was filmed as The Wicked Lady (1945), featuring Margaret Lockwood and James Mason. Other titles include Gay Crusaders (1934), Lady Sarah (1939), Lord Edward (1943), Tea at Crumbo Castle (1949), Venetian Bride (1954), and The Noble Savages (1962). She also published two children's titles, Jehan of the Ready Fists (1936), set during the Crusades, and Sturdy Rogue (1941), set in Elizabethan England.

KING-HALL, OLGA [MARY FELICIA DOROTHEA] (Aug 1867 – 14 Aug 1950)
(née Ker)
1920s
Mother of novelists Magdalen KING-HALL and Lou KING-HALL. Author of at least three novels—An Engagement (1921), What the Blounts Did (1922), and Her Italian Husband (1926). One source says she also published novels in Italian, but if so I've not located them.

KINLOCK (KINLOCH), LUCY [MARGARET] (4 Aug 1899 - c1995)
1930s
From a Scottish family, but settling later in life in the U.S., Kinloch published a single novel, A World Within a School (1937), based on her own time at Harrogate Ladies' College, which Sims & Clare describe as straddling the line between girls' story and adult novel. Her real family name was Kinloch, but her publisher used Kinlock for her book.

KIRBY, ELIZABETH (dates unknown)
1910s – 1930s
Untraced author of six novels—The Bridegroom (1916), Little Miss Muffet (1918), Penelope (1920, published in the U.S. as The Adorable Dreamer), Fugitives (1925), All Saints’ Day (1931), and Liberty Let Loose (1931).

KITCHIN, M[ARY]. LE S[BIREL]. (13 Mar 1905 - 1981)
1920s
Author of a single novel, Tune of Youth (1927), and co-author of a 1932 non-fiction work called World of Today. Little information is available about her or her work.

KLICKMANN, [EMILY] FLORA (26 Jan 1867 – 20 Nov 1958)
(married name Henderson-Smith)
1890s – 1930s
Children’s author, editor of Girl's Own Paper for more than two decades, and author of The Flower-Patch Among the Hills (1916) and its sequels, humorous memoirs about gardening and daily life. She published numerous works about sewing and other crafts. Her fiction includes The Ambitions of Jenny Ingram: A True Story of Modern London Life (1905), Between the Larch-woods and the Weir (1917), The Trail of the Ragged Robin (1921), The Carillon of Scarpa (1925), The Lady-with-the-Crumbs (1931), Mystery in the Windflower Wood (1932), and Delicate Fuss (1933).

KNIGHT, FLORENCE M[ARIAN]. (1876 – 8 Jan 1954)
1920s, 1950s
Author of a single girls' school story, Keep Troth (1951), and one other earlier work of fiction, But If Not (1924), about which little is known. She also wrote history and biography, and one undated title, In Honey-Bird Land, described as an account, for young readers, of aspects of life in India.

KNIGHT, IRENE [HILDA] (16 Sept 1911 – 11 Jul 1995)
1960s
Author of four romantic novels—The Road to Avalon (1960), Apart from All Else (1960), To Me—Come True (1961), and Someone for Julia (1962).

KNOX, ANN (ANNA) [ALLNUTT] (8 Sept 1901 – 24 Jul 1978)
(married name Daniell)
1920s – 1930s
Author of one volume of poetry and five novels. The first, Flowerdown (1928), is about "the impact a crass, monied American family has upon an aristocratic English family down on its luck after The Great War." The others are Vallejo Kitty (1929), Featured on Broadway (1930), Sons and Daughters (1932), and No Left Turn (1936).

Knox, Cleone
          see KING-HALL, MAGDALEN

KYLE, ELISABETH (1901 – 23 Feb 1982)
(pseudonym of Agnes Mary Robertson Dunlop, aka Jan Ralston)
1930s – 1980s
Author of more than 60 volumes of fiction for adults and children author. Much of her work for children makes use of her Scottish background. Titles include Visitors from England (1941), Holly Hotel (1945), The Mirrors of Castle Doone (1947), The Captain's House (1952), The House of the Pelican (1954), The Stilt Walkers (1972), and The Key of the Castle (1976). She also published nearly a dozen fictionalized biographies of famous figures for children. Her adult fiction includes The Begonia Bed (1934), But We Are Exiles (1942), Carp Country (1946), The Regent's Candlesticks (1954), Queen's Evidence (1969), Free as Air (1974), The Stark Inheritance (1978), and Bridge of the Blind Man (1983).

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