Thursday, July 3, 2014

THE MYSTERY LIST (E-M)

A-D          E-M          N-Z

British Women Mystery Writers 1910-1960


Can I manage to lead off all three sections of
this list with a Hitchcock-related work or image?

I've finally finished putting together part 2 (of 3) of The Mystery List, featuring all of the British women from my Overwhelming List who wrote mysteries.  I've been having such fun with it that I was in danger of never finishing it at all.  But I have finally, reluctantly, torn myself away from it.  



Please do let me know if you spot any errors or oversights. Only this morning I made a correction to part 1 of the list, in which I had referred to Pamela Branch's debut novel as The Wicked Overcoat instead of The Wooden Overcoat.  I shudder to think what sort of Freudian seething in my unconscious resulted in that error, but it was an ongoing one—I also had to correct it on my main list.  Sadly, it will have to remain in error on the PDF version of the list until it corrects itself with the next update.  


One of my favorite Mitchell covers; based on Mitchell's
descriptions of Mrs. Bradley, this is certainly a
closer approximation than Diana Rigg, who played her on TV

However, on a more cheerful note, now that I am not dimwittedly searching for the wrong title, it turns out that the novel is available from the library after all.  I remember thinking how odd it was that no library seemed to have it... 



Hope you enjoy this portion of the list!






HELEN EASTWOOD (1892-c1984)
(née Baker, aka Olive Baxter, aka Fay Ramsay)
Enormously prolific author of romantic suspense under her own name and her pseudonyms.  Crime Fiction IV suggests that her more straightforward mystery/thrillers include Beloved Intruder (1949), Fugitive Wife (1960), and The Ghostly Melody (1977), but I can't confirm or add to that.  Among her other titles are several very catchy ones, though, such as To Be Worthy of Shadows (1938), Green Eyes for Torture (1939), Synthetic Halo (1940), Ken's Watery Shroud (1942), Destiny for Jill (1961), and Sweet Trespasser (1978).

JEAN EDMISTON (1913-????)
(full name Helen Jean Mary Edmiston, aka Helen Robertson)
Author of four mystery novels under her pseudonym and one non-mystery, The Shake-Up (1962), under her real name.  Her most acclaimed mystery is 1960's The Chinese Goose (aka Swan Song), which certainly sounds original enough, involving a woman who may have been murdered by swans.  A teenage girl investigates on her own and in collaboration with a detective.  According to the Spectator, Venice of the Black Sea (1956) deals with a "suspected sororicide" in "the seedy, shabby-genteel atmosphere of Clapham and thereabouts," while The Crystal-Gazers (1957), focuses on an alchemist electrocuted during a séance.  The Winged Witnesses (1955), Edmiston's first novel, remains a mystery in more ways than one—I could find no details about it.

MARIBEL EDWIN (1895-1985)
(née Thomson)
Novelist and children's author.  Although I've found references to Edwin's "three mystery novels" between 1930 and 1935, the only one I can confirm is Sound Alibi (1935), in which a blind criminologist's secretary falls prey to murder.  The Valiant Jester (1930), about which I can find no information, could be another, but Windfall Harvest (1931) and Atmosphere for Gloria (1935) are, according to contemporary reviews, romantic dramas.  If anyone has additional information, please let me know.  After the 1930s, Edwin turned to children's fiction, often prominently featuring animals and nature settings.

JOSEPHINE ELDER (1895-1988)
(pseudonym of Olive Gwendoline Potter, aka Margaret Potter)
Doctor and novelist, Elder wrote numerous girls’ school novels, including Evelyn Finds Herself (1929), and six novels for adults, often centered around medicine and the challenges and sacrifices of career women.  Much of her work has been reprinted in recent years by Girls Gone By and by Greyladies, including Elder's one mystery, The Mystery of the Purple Bentley (1932), about a woman doctor whose disappearance is investigated by her nurse/assistant.

MARGARET ERSKINE (1901-1984)
(pseudonym of Margaret Wetherby Williams)
Born in Canada but raised in England, Erskine was a crime novelist who published more than 20 novels from the 1930s to the 1970s, many featuring Inspector Septimus Finch.  Titles include And Being Dead (1938), Whispering House (1947), Give up the Ghost (1949), The Disappearing Bridegroom (1950), Dead by Now (1953), Old Mrs. Ommanney Is Dead (1955), The Ewe Lamb (1968), and Besides the Wench Is Dead (1975).

AUDREY ERSKINE-LINDOP (1920-1986)
(married name Leslie)
Actress, screenwriter, and author of romantic, mystery, and historical fiction; non-mystery titles include The Tall Headlines (1950), The Singer Not the Song (1953), set in Mexico, and The Way to the Lantern (1961), set in the French Revolution.  Although I Start Counting (1966) won the Prix Roman Policier, it seems to be part romantic suspense, part coming-of-age tale (see a review of it here).  Mist Over Talla (1957), another suspense drama, became the 1962 film I Thank a Fool.  Erskine-Lindop wrote more than a dozen novels in all, as well as several movie screenplays.

LEONORA EYLES (1889-1960)
(née Pitcairn, married name Murray, aka Elizabeth Lomond? [see entry for Lomond below])
Journalist and novelist who focused on working class women in her non-fiction The Woman in the Little House (1922) and novels like Margaret Protests (1919) and Hidden Lives (1922).  In the 1930s Eyles published three successful mysteries—They Wanted Him Dead (1936), Death of a Dog (1936) and No Second Best (1939).

KATHARINE FARRER (1911-1972)
(née Newton)
The wife of an Oxford don, Farrer published three mysteries in the 1950s, as well as one non-mystery novel, At Odds With Morning (1960), described as "a satire of a self-appointed saint."  Her mysteries feature detective Richard Ringwood and his wife, Clare, and although critics note that her plots can at times be clumsy, she is known for the wealth of detail she offers about the subject at hand in each book.  The Missing Link (1952) is set at Oxford, but offers information about child-rearing and the Romany dialect, Gownsman's Gallows (1954) is set in France, and The Cretan Counterfeit (1957) is set in and around the British Museum and makes prominent use of archaeological concerns and behind-the-scenes details about the museum itself and its Bloomsbury surroundings.  As for many other mystery authors, Rue Morgue Press offers detailed information on Farrer and her work.

MARGARET [ARIELL] FERGUSON (dates unknown)
Prolific author of romance, suspense, and other popular fiction from the 1930s to 1970s; titles include Forbidden Fires (1930), Flambeau (1934), Bid Time Return (1941), The Sign of the Ram (1943), Harvest of Nettles (1952), Here Are Dragons (1956), and Bird on the Wing (1968).

RUBY FERGUSON (1899-1966)
(née Ruby Constance Ashby, aka R. C. Ashby)
Best known now for her popular series of girls' horse stories, starting with Jill's Gymkhana (1949), and for her wonderful novel Lady Rose and Mrs. Memmary (1937, available from Persephone), Ferguson began her career with a series of nine mysteries published under her maiden name, which are known for combining the rationality of detective novels with surprising supernatural elements that are sometimes debunked and sometimes—perhaps most interestingly—not.  Most of her R. C. Ashby novels are now vanishingly rare, but two have been reprinted in recent years—Death at Tiptoe (1931), by Greyladies (now out of print), and He Arrived at Dusk (1933), by Valancourt Books—the latter of which, about a manor house in Wales apparently haunted by the violent ghost of a Roman soldier, is often considered to be her best work in the genre.  A couple of years ago, I lucked out and happened across a copy of Out Went the Taper (1934), in which some at least of the apparently supernatural events remain intriguingly unexplained, and I enjoyed it a lot.  The other R. C. Ashby novels are The Moorland Man (1926), The Tale of Rowan Christie (1927), Beauty Bewitched (1928), Plot Against a Widow (1932), One Way Traffic (1933), and one which apparently was never published in book form but appeared in a periodical called The Methodist (Vol. 90, June 1932, if any of you are obsessive enough to track it down—and if you are, please make a copy for me!), called Miss Graham's Guest.  She appears to have returned (sort of) to the mystery genre with her final two novels, The Wakeful Guest (1962) and A Woman With a Secret (1965).  I read the former, set in the immediate postwar period, but felt that it couldn't "seem to decide whether to be a murder mystery or an odd social novel about war refugees coming into contact with superficial young girls."

ELIZABETH FERRARS (1907-1995)
(pseudonym of Morna Doris MacTaggart, married name Brown)
A popular author of mysteries from the 1940s to the 1990s, Ferrars began her career with two mainstream novels published under her real name, Turn Simple (1932) and Broken Music (1934). The main characters of Ferrars' mysteries are often creative types moving in a fairly genteel, upper-middle-class world, and her novels have been described as "politely feminist."  I'm particularly intrigued by I, Said the Fly (1945), set in wartime London in the neighborhood around the British Museum (a setting which recurred in several other mysteries). Ferrars wrote several sequences of novels with overlapping characters and settings—a light-hearted early series featuring Toby Dyke; Inspector Dittredge novels set in the fictional town of Helsington and its nearby villages; Police Chief Raposo novels set in Madeira; several novels featuring retired botany professor, Andrew Basnett; and a late series featuring Virginia and Felix Freer, a separated (but not divorced) married couple.  Other titles include Give a Corpse a Bad Name (1940), Your Neck in a Noose (1942), The March Hare Murders (1949), Alibi for a Witch (1952), Furnished for Murder (1957), The Decayed Gentlewoman (1964), A Stranger and Afraid (1971), Skeleton in Search of a Cupboard (1982), and Answer Came There None (1992).

A. FIELDING (dates unknown)
(pseudonym of Dorothy Feilding)
Mystery writer of the 1920s-1940s whose real identity remains shrouded in obscurity; titles include Deep Currents (1924), The Eames Erskine Case (1924), The Charteris Mystery (1925), The Footsteps That Stopped (1926), The Clifford Affair (1927), The Net around Joan Ingilby (1928), Murder at the Nook (1929), The Craig Poisoning Mystery (1930), The Wedding-Chest Mystery (1930), The Upfold Farm Mystery (1931), The Westwood Mystery (1932), The Tall House Mystery (1933), Tragedy at Beechcroft (1935), Mystery at the Rectory (1936), Black Cats Are Lucky (1937), Murder in Suffolk (1938), and Pointer to a Crime (1944). Several of Fielding's mysteries have been released in the past year or two as e-books, at quite enticing prices.

JOAN FLEMING (1908-1980)
(née Gibson)
Also a children's author, Fleming's mysteries are notable for their variety of style and approach.  Her best known works include Maiden's Prayer (1957), The Man from Nowhere (1960), and Midnight Hag (1966).  Maiden's Prayer deals with a middle-aged spinster in peril, and the Times Literary Supplement said of it: "The atmosphere of the shabby Georgian house in London and the suspense created by Miss Maiden's extreme vulnerability are well conveyed."  The Man from Nowhere deals with a newcomer in an English village, who becomes the prime suspect when a murder occurs.  Midnight Hag similarly focuses on the return of a former resident to the village in which his wife died many years before.  Other titles include Two Lovers Too Many (1949), The Gallows in My Garden (1951), Polly Put the Kettle On (1952), Malice Matrimonial (1959), Death of a Sardine (1963), Dirty Butter for Servants (1972), and Too Late! Too Late! The Maiden Cried (1975).

CICELY FRASER-SIMSON (1896-1959)
(née Devenish)
Author of a children's series featuring a character called Golly Smith, Fraser-Simson began her career with five novels for adults, at least some of which are mysteries.  In 1927, the Bookman called Footsteps in the Night (1927)a novel of mystery and adventure and said of it: "Mrs. Fraser-Simson has drawn real and likeable characters who behave and speak with a delightful naturalness, often very amusingly, and the strength of her plot depends on the fact that the happenings are probable and the explanations perfectly convincing. For this reason the book is much more exciting than the average one of its kind, and to say that you cannot put it down until you have read every word of it is, in this instance, no exaggeration."  Her other novels, about which less information is available, were The Swinging Shutter (1927), Danger Follows (1929), Count the Hours (1940), and Another Spring (1953).

KATHLEEN FREEMAN (1879-1959)
(aka Mary Fitt, Stuart Mary Wick, and Caroline Cory)
Classical scholar, children's author and novelist who started her career publishing elegant mainstream fiction including Martin Hanner (1926), Quarrelling with Lois (1928), The Huge Shipwreck (1934), and Gown and Shroud (1947).  She is better remembered for her highly literary Inspector Mallet mystery series, which began with Expected Death (1938).  Critics have compared her to the likes of Elizabeth Bowen and Dorothy Sayers, and it seems like she would be ripe for rediscovery, but sadly there are no signs of that happening so far.  Other mystery titles include Murder of a Mouse (1939), Death on Herons' Mere (1941), Death and the Pleasant Voices (1946), Pity for Pamela (1950), Sweet Poison (1956), Mizmaze (1958), and There Are More Ways of Killing... (1960).

CELIA FREMLIN (1914-2009)
(married names Goller and Minchin)
Though best known as a crime novelist, Fremlin began her writing career as a journalit.  The Seven Chars of Chelsea (1940) details her experiences in domestic service (apparently a trendy topic at the time, as Monica Dickens' One Pair of Hands had just appeared the previous year—though somehow I suspect Fremlin's is a bit more serious in nature), and her War Factory (1943), a Mass Observation publication, is a vivid view of wartime factory life.  In 1958, with The Hours Before Dawn, Fremlin began a successful string of crime novels which often focused on the fears and vulnerabilities of ordinary women.  The Hours Before Dawn, perhaps still her most famous novel, is about a new mother who becomes convinced that her lodger is a threat to her and her infant.  Other works include Uncle Paul (1959), The Trouble-Makers (1963), Prisoner's Base (1967), Appointment with Yesterday (1972), and Listening in the Dusk (1990).

PAMELA FRY (1916-????)
(full name Adele Pamela Fry)
Author who straddles this list and its so-far-nonexistent Canadian equivalent—she was born in England and emigrated to Canada at age 12. Fry published two mystery novels, Harsh Evidence (1953) and The Watching Cat (1960), as well as, rather oddly, a cookbook called Cooking the American Way (1963). She was apparently also an actress and political activist, though researcher John Herrington noted that on passenger lists for her regular trips across the Atlantic, her profession is always given as housewife.

SARAH [RACHEL STAINER] GAINHAM (1915-1999)
(married names Terry and Ames, aka Rachel Ames)
Journalist and novelist best known for Night Falls on the City (1967), a bestseller set in wartime Vienna, Gainham published several earlier spy novels (several reviewed here) and continued publishing until 1983; other titles include Time Right Deadly (1956), The Cold Dark Night (1957), The Silent Hostage (1960), Private Worlds (1971), and The Tiger, Life (1983).

MENNA [PATRICIA] GALLIE (1920-1990)
(née Humphreys)
Welsh translator and author of six novels (sometimes "bawdy"), including Strike for a Kingdom (1959), Man's Desiring (1960), The Small Mine (1962), Travels with a Duchess (1968), You're Welcome to Ulster! (1970), and In These Promiscuous Parts (1986). Strike for a Kingdom is described as a detective novel set in a Welsh mining village hosting its annual Carnival at the time of the 1926 General Strike, in the midst of which the hated mine manager is murdered. Critics referred to it as both "an outstanding detective story" and "a poet's novel." None of Gallie's other works appear to be mystery-themed.

DOROTHEA FRANCES GARDINER (1880-1954)
(née Walters, aka D. F. Gardiner, aka Theodore Frank)
Author of five novels in the 1920s and 1930s, most or all of them mysteries, including The Lifted Latch (1929), The Prison House (1929), Another Night, Another Day (1930), The Beguiling Shore (1930), and Murder at a Dog Show (1935).  The last in particular sounds like fun, but I haven't found any details about her novels so far.

ARMINE GRACE (1867-1939)
(pseudonym of Amy Grace Catherine Lowndes)
Sister of Dorothy Lowndes (aka Dolf Wyllarde), Grace also worked in the London theatre and published two novels of her own.  The Cloak of St. Martin (1913), about the children of a wrongly-hanged man trying to put their lives back together, sounds rather like melodrama, but The House of Silent Footsteps (1917), about a gang of romantic burglars and their pursuit by a young journalist, might more or less fit this list.

DULCIE GRAY (1915-2011)
(pseudonym & stage name of Dulcie Winifred Catherine Denison, née Savage)
A veteran actress of stage, television, and film (including the screen version of Dorothy Whipple's They Were Sisters), Gray also wrote more than 20 novels, most of them mysteries characterized, according to one critic, by their "zest and energy."  She was reportedly a fan of Agatha Christie, and some of her works evoke her work.  Others are more psychological in nature, and Gray also published adventure and horror stories.  Her titles include Murder on the Stairs (1957), Epitaph for a Dead Actor (1960), 1960, Murder on a Saturday (1961), The Devil Wore Scarlet (1964), Died in the Red (1967), The Murder of Love (1967), and (one of my favorite titles of all time) Deadly Lampshade (1971).

JANET GREEN (1908-1993)
(pseudonym of Ethel Victoria Green)
Playwright and author of a single novel, Murder Mistaken (1953), based on her earlier play and later filmed as Cast a Dark Shadow, starring Dirk Bogarde and Margaret Lockwood; the story is about a man who murders his wife for her money, only to find her fortune isn't what he expected, so he goes on the prowl for another victim…

ACEITUNA GRIFFIN (1876-1949)
(née Thurlow)
More research needed; author of a dozen or more novels from the 1900s to the 1930s, among them several mysteries; titles include Mrs. Vannock (1907), The Tavistocks (1908), Pearl and Plain (1927), Amber and Jade (1928), Genesta (1930), Conscience (1931), Delia’s Dilemma (1934), Motive for Murder (1935, in collaboration with Joy Griffin), Commandments Six and Eight (1936), Sweets and Sinners (1937), and “Where There Is a Will…” (1939 ). The Punt Murder (1936) seems to have been reprinted in recent years and remains in print.

JOY GRIFFIN (1913-1973)
(full name Ursula Mary Joy Griffin)
Probably the daughter or sister-in-law of novelist Aceituna Griffin, and co-author (with Griffin) of a single mystery, Motive for Murder (1935).

KATHLEEN [CLARICE] GROOM (1872-1954)
(née Cornwell, earlier married names Klein and Dealtry, aka Kit Dealtry, aka C. Groom, aka Mrs. Sydney Groom)
Author of at least a dozen novels 1910s-1950, some of them mysteries; titles include Ill-Gotten Gain (1909), Shadows of Desires (1918), The Mystery of Mr. Bernard Brown (1920), Detective Sylvia Shale (1924), The Folly of Fear (1947), Phantom Fortune (1948), and The Recoil (1952).

AYLMER HALL (1914-????)
(pseudonym of Norah Eleanor Lyle Hall, née Cummins)
Author of ten children's adventures 1952-1970; most are historical—The Devilish Plot (1965) is set in Napoleonic England, and later titles such as The Marked Man (1967), Colonel Bull's Inheritance (1968), Beware of Moonlight (1969), and The Minstrel Boy (1970), are set in historical Ireland; The Mystery of Torland Manor (1952) and The K. F. Conspiracy (1955) appear to have contemporary settings and presumably have mystery elements.

ELAINE HAMILTON (c1882-1967)
(married name Holt)
Mystery writer of the 1930s whose series character was Inspector Thomas Reynolds.  Her books are Some Unknown Hand (1930, aka The Westminster Mystery), Murder in the Fog (1931), The Chelsea Mystery (1932), The Green Death (1932), The Silent Bell (1933), Peril at Midnight (1934), Tragedy in the Dark (1935), The Casino Mystery (1936), and Murder Before Tuesday (1937). Some of her titles have now been released as e-books.

MARY AGNES HAMILTON (1884-1962)
(née Adamson, aka Iconoclast)
One of the first women elected to the House of Commons, Hamilton was also a translator (from German) and novelist; Virginia Woolf wrote dismissively about her in her diaries: "The truth is that Molly Hamilton with all her ability to think like a man, & her strong and serviceable mind, & her independent self-respecting life is not a writer."  Nevertheless, she received some acclaim for Dead Yesterday (1916), which focused on intellectuals and pacifism during World War I.  Her one mystery is 1931's Murder in the House of Commons, of which the New York Times said that Hamilton had "succeeded in demonstrating that a novel of British politics can be, even though a murder mystery is incorporated in it, almost as dull reading as the stenographic report of the proceedings of any legislative assembly."  Ouch.

MAVIS DORIEL HAY (1894–1979)
(married name Fitzrandolph)
Author of three mystery novels of the mid-1930s, recently rediscovered and reprinted (as physical as well as e-books) by the British Library—Murder Underground (1934), Death on the Cherwell (1935), and The Santa Klaus Murder (1936); she also co-wrote several books about rural crafts in the 1920s.

ANNIE HAYNES (1865-1929)
Mystery author who in the 1920s was one of only two women mystery writers published by the famous Bodley Head publishing house—the other being Agatha Christie. Haynes was remarkably prolific, though, according to the introduction to the Dean Street Press edition of her novels, her earliest novels—appearing at least by the 1910s—were serialized and never appeared in book form. In 1923, she finally published her first book, and rapidly followed it with 11 more in just a few years.  Her titles include The Bungalow Mystery (1923), The Abbey Court Murder (1923, originally serialized as Lady Carew's Secret), The Secret of Greylands (1924), The Witness on the Roof (1925), The Blue Diamond (1925), The House in Charlton Crescent (1926), The Master of the Priory (1927, originally serialized as The Governess at the Priory), The Crow’s Inn Tragedy (1927), The Man with the Dark Beard (1928), The Crime at Tattenham Corner (1929), Who Killed Charmian Karslake (1929), and The Crystal Beads Murder (1930), the last of which was completed by another author after her death. On the basis of textual evidence, mystery scholar Curtis Evans, in the Dean Street Press edition of Crystal Beads, speculates that the author may have been Lucy Beatrice Malleson, who also has an entry on this list, and who was best known for the mysteries she wrote under the pseudonym Anthony Gilbert. Happily, Dean Street is in the process of reprinting all of Haynes' novels in paperback and e-book format.

MARY VIOLET HEBERDEN (1906-1965)
(aka M. V. Heberden, aka Charles L. Leonard)
Born in England but lived in the U.S. for most of her adult life; stage actress both in England and (more successfully) on Broadway, where for a year and a half 1935-1937 she played a supporting role in Victoria Regina, which starred Helen Hayes as Queen Victoria. Later, she was the author of more than 30 mystery and spy novels 1939-1953, many under the Charles L. Leonard pseudonym (the name of her father, Charles Lewis Heberden, a rector, who died when she was only 5. Her series characters were Desmond Shannon, a New York private investigator, Rick Vanner, a former Navy spy, and Paul Kilgerrin, a wounded veteran of World War II who works with American spy organizations, with his sidekick Gerry Cordent, a female pilot. Including all the ones I've tracked down, with alternate (English language) titles where I know them, her books are Death on the Doormat (1939), Fugitive from Murder (1940), Subscription to Murder (1940), Aces, Eights, & Murder (1941), The Lobster Pick Murder (1941), Deadline for Destruction (1942), Murder Follows Desmond Shannon (1942), The Stolen Squadron (1942), Murder Makes a Racket (1942), Murder Goes Astray (1943), The Fanatic of Fez (1943, aka Assignment to Death), The Secret of the Spa (1944), Murder of a Stuffed Shirt (1944), To What Dread End (1944), Expert in Murder (1945), Vicious Pattern (1945), Murder Cancels All Debts (1946), Pursuit in Peru (1946), They Can't All Be Guilty (1947), Search for a Scientist (1947), The 4th Funeral (1948), Drinks on the Victim (1948), The Case of the Eight Brothers (1948), Sinister Shelter (1949), Engaged to Murder (1949), Exit This Way (1950, aka You'll Fry Tomorrow), Secrets for Sale (1950), That's the Spirit (1950, aka Ghosts Can't Kill), The Sleeping Witness (1951), Treachery in Trieste (1951), Tragic Target (1952), and Murder Unlimited (1953).

KATHLEEN [DOUGLAS] HEWITT (1893-1980)
(née Brown, earlier married name Pitcher, aka Dorothea Martin)
Author of nearly two dozen novels from the 1930s-1950s. These include mysteries and thrillers such as her wartime works Lady Gone Astray (1941), about a young heiress with amnesia up against unscrupulous refugees, and The Mice Are Not Amused (1942), about a legal secretary who takes a job as doorman at a block of flats infested with Fifth Columnists. Presumably some of her other works, such as Stand-in for Danger (1940) and Murder in the Ballroom (1948), are also mysteries or thrillers.

GEORGETTE HEYER (1902-1974)
(married name Rougier, aka Stella Martin)
A prolific and much-loved author of Regency romance novels, Heyer also penned a dozen popular mysteries, including Footsteps in the Dark (1932) Why Shoot a Butler? (1933), The Unfinished Clue (1934), Merely Murder (1935, aka Death in the Stocks), Behold, Here's Poison! (1936), The Talisman Ring (1936), They Found Him Dead (1937), A Blunt Instrument (1938), Penhallow (1942), Envious Casca (1941), Duplicate Death (1951), and Detection Unlimited (1953). Happily (and unusually for this list and this blog overall), all of Heyers mysteries are in print and readily available.

ELEANOR HIBBERT (1906-1993)
(née Burford, aka Jean Plaidy, aka Victoria Holt, Philippa Carr, Eleanor Alice Burford, Elbur Ford, Ellalice Tate, and Kathleen Kellow)
Popular author of over 200 novels, including historical novels, Gothic romances, and historical romances, particularly under her enormously popular Plaidy, Holt, and Carr pseudonyms. Less well-known are the four mysteries she wrote under the pseudonym Elbur Ford—The Flesh and the Devil (1950), Poison in Pimlico (1950), The Bed Disturbed (1952), and Evil in the House (1953, aka Such Butter Business).

THEODOSIA FRANCES WYNNE HICKEY (1895-1956)
(née Hannay)
More research needed; author of several children's books, including The Unexpected Adventure (1935) and Bulldog Sheila, or, The Gang (1936), as well as at least two mystery novels, The Corpse in the Church (1934) and The Hand, or, Mystery at Number Ten (1937).  Details are sketchy.

[NAOMI] ANNE HOCKING (1890-1966)
(née Messer, aka Mona Messer, aka Mona Dunlop)
From a very writerly family (father Joseph, uncle Silas, aunt Salome, and younger sisters Elizabeth Nisot and Joan Carew Shill were all published novelists as well), Anne Hocking published her pseudonymous first novel (as Mona Dunlop), a non-mystery called The Guarded Trust, in 1915, which was dismissed by Dominion as amateurish and sentimental.  She didn't publish again until 1930, when A Castle For Sale began a string of successful mysteries which appeared at regular intervals until her death.   Her series characters were Inspector Curtis and Sergeant Flyte.  Other titles include Cat's Paw (1933), Walk Into My Parlour (1934), Stranglehold (1936), What A Tangled Web (1937), The Wicked Flee (1940), Six Green Bottles (1943), The Vultures Gather (1945), At the Cedars (1949), Death Among the Tulips (1953), And No One Wept (1954), Relative Murder (1957), Poisoned Chalice (1959), The Thin Spun Life (1960), and He Had To Die (1962).

CHARLOTTE HOUGH (1924-2008)
(full name Helen Charlotte Hough, née Woodyadd, later married name Ackroyd)
Mother of novelist Deborah Moggach; author of more than 20 children's books 1956-1978, and a single adult novel, The Bassington Murder (1980), featuring an amateur sleuth in a small English village. She worked on a second mystery, but in the 1980s, she went to prison for assisting an elderly friend in committing suicide, and the experience was so traumatic that she was unable to return to writing. Her daughter wrote a poignant obituary for the Telegraph, which can be read here.

MURIEL HOWE (1898-1987)
(married name Smithies, aka Newlyn Nash [with sister Doris Howe])
Sister of Doris Howe; author of more than 20 novels, including several collaborations with her sister that appear to have been romantic suspense. Two of her own titles, however, The Affair at Falconers (1957) and Pendragon (1958) were more straightforward mysteries. Other titles include If There Be One (1944), Master of Skelgale (1946), Heatherling (1950), A House of Character (1953), Beach of Dreams (1961), and The Pearl (1963).

FREDA M[ARY ELIZABETH]. HURT (1911-1999)
Author of numerous children's books and a series of mysteries; works include the school stories The Wonderful Birthday (1953) and Fun Next Door (1954), as well as The Body at Busman's Hollow (1959), Sweet Death (1961), Death and the Dark Daughter (1966), and Dark Design (1972).

JOHN IRONSIDE (c1866-c1945)
(pseudonym of Euphemia Margaret Tait)
Author of nine novels, most of them mysteries, in the 1910s to 1940s.  Titles include The Red Symbol (1911), Forged in Strong Fires (1912), The Call-Box Mystery (1923), Chris: A Love Story (1926), Jack of Clubs (1931), The Marten Mystery (1933), Blackmail (1938), Lady Pamela's Pearls (1941), and The Crime and the Casket (1945).

MARGARET JEPSON (1903-2003)
(married name Birkinshaw, aka Pearl Bellairs)
Daughter of author Edgar Alfred Jepson, sister of crime novelist Selwyn Jepson, and mother of novelist Fay Weldon. She wrote seven novels, some of which appear to be thrillers, but details are scarce. 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).

IANTHE JERROLD (1898-1977)
(née Bridgman, married name Menges, aka Geraldine Bridgman)
Once a praised member of the Detection Club, as well as a mainstream novelist from the 1920s to 1960. Jerrold's two underrated Golden Age mysteries, The Studio Crime (1929) and Dead Man’s Quarry (1930), have been reprinted by Dean Street Press. In some sources she is credited with writing no additional mysteries, but it appears that she also published two later novels under the pseudonym Geraldine Bridgman—Let Him Lie (1940) and There May Be Danger (1948)—which seem to be more in the thriller vein. Jerrold also published 18 other novels, some romantic in subject matter; non-mystery titles include Hangingstone Farm (1924), Summer's Day (1933), Seaside Comedy (1934), The Dogs Do Bark (1936), The Stones Await Us (1945), Love in London (1947), The Coming of Age (1950), Transit of Saturn (1952), and My Twin and I (1966).

F[RYNIWYD]. TENNYSON JESSE (1888-1958)
(married name Harwood)
Novelist, historian, criminologist, and journalist (during World War I she was one of the few women war correspondents), Jesse is not a crime or mystery writer in the usual sense, but she published numerous works of non-fiction about well-known crimes and trials, and some of her fiction is also focused on crime, such as Moonraker: or, The Female Pirate and Her Friends (1927) and A Pin to See the Peepshow (1934), a novel about a famous murder case.  The latter work, as well as The Lacquer Lady (1929), about life at the Burmese Royal Palace, were both reprinted by Virago in the 1980s.  Jesse also wrote three collections of stories, many of which contain mystery or crime elements—Beggars on Horseback (1915), Many Latitudes (1928), and The Solange Stories (1931).

KATHERINE JOHN (1906-1984)
(née Gower)
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), which was reprinted by Hogarth Crime in the 1980s.

DOROTHY JOHNSON (1890-1954)
(full name Anna Dorothy Philippa Johnson)
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).

MYRTLE JOHNSTON (1909-1955)
Author of six novels and a short story collection, mostly dark psychological drama, including several works focused on crime or criminals.  Hanging Johnny (1927) is about "a misunderstood executioner," while A Robin Redbreast in a Cage (1950), is about an acquitted murderer and his relationship with a female prison warden who has herself been scarred by an brutal attack.  These are certainly not light whodunits!  Johnston's other titles include Relentless (1930), The Maiden (1932), The Rising (1939), and Amiel (1941), the last dealing the horrors of war.

PAMELA HANSFORD JOHNSON (1912-1981)
(married names Stewart and Snow, aka Nap Lombard [with Gordon Neil Stewart])
Popular author of satirical novels, of which The Unspeakable Skipton (1959), based on the life of the infamous Baron Corvo, is often regarded as her best; others include the wartime novels The Family Pattern (1942) and Winter Quarters (1943), and Catherine Carter (1952). Early in her career, she co-wrote two pseudonymous mysteries with her first husband—Tidy Death (1940) and Murder's a Swine (1943, aka The Grinning Pig).

M[ARY]. M[ARGARET]. KAYE (1908-2004)
(married name Hamilton, aka Mollie Hamilton, aka Mollie/Molly Kaye)
Children's author, memoirist, and bestselling novelist, best known for The Far Pavilions (1978), an epic of the British Raj; other works include Six Bars at Seven (1940), Shadow of the Moon (1957), and Trade Wind (1963). She also published a series of mysteries set in exotic locales where she and her husband were stationed. 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).

EDITH MURRAY KEATE (c1867-1945)
Author of a popular guide to Hampton Court Palace (1932), Keate also wrote several novels about which little information is available.  The Jackanapes Jacket: A Thrilling Story of a Murder at Hampton Court (1931), at least, certainly seems like a mystery.  Some of her other titles could be as well.  These include A Garden of the Gods (1914), A Wild-Cat Scheme (1930), The Mimic (1932), and Demon of the Air (1936).

MARY KELLY (1927-     )
(née Coolican)
Author of 10 acclaimed mystery novels.  The St. James Guide to Crime & Mystery Writers makes The Twenty-Fifth Hour (1971) sound completely irresistible: "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.

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

HELEN MARY KEYNES (1892-1975)
(aka Clementine Hunter)
Author of adventure and mystery novels.  She published six books in all (that I have been able to track down), and the last four in particular appear to be mysteries or thrillers.  Her titles are The Spanish Marriage: A Romance (1913), Honour the King: A Romance (1914), 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).  Judging by its cover, the last of those also seems to be set in wartime.

ELISABETH LAMBERT (1915-2003)
(pseudonym of Elisabeth Lambert Ortiz-Tinoco, aka Elisabeth Lambert Ortiz)
Best known as a food writer, especially on Latin American cuisine, Lambert was born in the UK but lived in Jamaica and Australia in her childhood; she published poetry and two novels, The Sleeping House Party (1951), a mystery set at an Australian artist's colony, and Father Couldn't Juggle (1954), about a girl growing up in Jamaica. A review of The Sleeping House Party in the Sydney Morning Herald piques my interest a bit; the narrator is the hired companion of the founder of the artist's colony, whom she describes: "She is generous, kind and hospitable and I think she is a bitch … very keen on high culture, but no slut under a hedge was more immoral than she, no baggage less principled." Yikes. A description of the characters include two interior decorators who appear to be gay men. The review concludes: "Detection is mediocre. The interest lies in the way this extraordinary crew spit, scratch and splutter under police questioning. The style is tough, frisky or mincing." Hmmmm, I wonder…

JANE LANGSLOW (dates unknown)
(possibly pseudonym of Maud Diver?)
Apparently the co-author (with Margaret Rivers Larminie) of a single novel, Gory Knight (1937), a parody of the kind of "round robin" detective novels popular at the time. Martin Edwards discusses the novel and the possibility that she is really Diver here. Edwards—reading the novel with mystery writer Margaret Yorke, a distant cousin of Larminie's—concluded: "The story parodies the celebrated detectives Hercule Poirot, Lord Peter Wimsey (and his manservant Bunter), Reggie Fortune, Dr Priestley and Inspector French—although the French character appears only in the final stages of the book .The sleuths gather, by improbable means, in an English country house, and are immediately greeted by the disappearance of the cook (the eponymous Ms Knight.) It is an entertaining piece of work. The plot is slight, and stretched out excessively, but to my mind there is much pleasure to be had in the way MRL and ‘Jane Langslow’ render the eccentricities of Poirot, Wimsey and Bunter in particular."

MARGARET RIVERS LARMINIE (1885-1964)
(married name Tragett)
Distant cousin of mystery writer Margaret Yorke; author of eight novels, including Echo (1923), Soames Green (1925), and The Visiting Moon (1932). Bookman described her 1924 novel Deep Meadows as a "very long novel concerning marriage and its ramifications." Her final work was a parody mystery, Gory Knight (1937), co-written with unidentified author Jane Langslow, who, according to Martin Edwards (see here), may be novelist Maud Diver. See Langslow's entry just above for Edwards' assessment of the novel.

MARIE LEIGHTON (1869-1941)
(née Connor, aka Mrs. Robert Leighton)
Mother of Ronald Leighton, Vera Brittain's fiancé who was killed in WWI, and engraver Clare Leighton, and a prolific author of romance novels and thrillers.  After a brief jaunt as an actress in her youth, Leighton published her first novel, Beauty's Queen (1884) at age 16.  Initially publishing historical fiction and romance, after the turn of the century she focused on a prolific output of mysteries and thrillers, many of which featured female heroines.  Among her several dozen books are Convict 413L (1910), The Bride of Dutton (1911), The Silver Stair (1914), The Shame of Silence (1917), Lucile Dare, Detective (1919), and Convict 100 (1920).

HILDA LEWIS (1896-1974)
Historical novelist and children's author best known for The Ship That Flew (1939), about a toy ship that travels in time; her novels for adults include several based on notorious real-life crimes.  These include Said Dr. Spendlove (1940, aka Case of the Little Doctor), focusing on the Crippen case, Strange Story (1945), a tale of two twin girls, one of whom murders the other, and A Mortal Malice (1963), which deals with the 17th century poisoning of Sir Overbury in the Tower of London.  The latter of which is one of historian Alison Weir's favorite novels—see what Weir has to say about Lewis, and about her other favorites, here.  Other titles include Pegasus Yoked (1933), Imogen Under Glass (1943), The Day Is Ours (1947), Wife to Henry V (1954), and The Witch and the Priest (1956), the last of which has been reprinted by Valancourt Books and deals with the ghost of a witch who tells her story to a priest who is condemning women to death for witchcraft.  Lewis is starting to look rather irresistible to me…

ALICE [MARY] CHETWYND LEY (1913-2004)
(née Humphrey)
Author of historical romance from the 1950s to 1980s, including The Jewelled Snuff Box (1959), The Georgian Rake (1960), and Letters for a Spy (1970); in the 1980s she wrote three historical crime novels—A Reputation Dies (1984), A Fatal Assignation (1987), and Masquerade of Vengeance (1989).

KATHLEEN LINDSAY (1903-1973)
(aka Mary Richmond, aka Molly Waring, aka Betty Manners, aka Elizabeth Fenton, aka Mary Faulkner, aka Jane Darnley, aka Margaret Cameron, aka Hugh Desmond, aka Nigel MacKenzie)
A hugely prolific author who appeared in a 1980s edition of the Guiness Book of World Records for the largest number of novels by a single author, Guiness crediting her with a total of 904 (some writers pride themselves on writing several pages a day, but Lindsay must have been able to polish off about ten chapters by teatime!).  Lindsay wrote under numerous pseudonyms, and her work includes historical and romantic fiction as well as mysteries from the 1920s to at least the 1970s.  As Hugh Desmond, she published around 30 mysteries featuring Scotland Yard detective Alas Fraser, as well as additional mysteries and thrillers.  Titles include The Hand of Vengeance (1945), Death Walks in Scarlet (1948), A Pact with the Devil (1952), The Death Parade (1954), Lady, Where Are You? (1957), The Case of the Blue Orchid (1961), Bodies in a Cupboard (1963), Murder Strikes At Dawn (1965), The Lady Has Claws (1966), and Murder On the Moor (1967).

IVY LITVINOV (1889-1977)
(née Low, aka Ivy Low)
Novelist and translator who lived in Russia and the Soviet Union for most of her adult life.  Her two early novels, published under her maiden name, sound rather intriguing—Growing Pains (1913) deals with the development of a young girl, and The Questing Beast (1914) features a sexually liberated Jewish woman writer.  Her late story collection, She Knew She Was Right (1971), was reprinted by Virago in the 1980s, but she's on this list because of her mystery novel, His Master's Voice (1930), which is known for vividly portraying a wintry Moscow in the 1920s.  Her mother was novelist Alice Herbert, included on my main list.

MARIE BELLOC LOWNDES (1868-1947)
(aka Philip Curtin)
Sister of Hilaire Belloc; biographer, memoirist, and author of dozens of novels.  Starting out as a journalist, Lowndes became best known for her romantic and our mystery tales.  Her most famous work is probably The Lodger (1913, available for free from Google Books or from Gutenberg), about a couple who come to suspect that their lodger may be Jack the Ripper.  That work was a bestseller and was later made into a film by Alfred Hitchcock.  Among her other mysteries and thrillers are The Chink in the Armour (1912), The Terriford Mystery (1924), Thou Shalt Not Kill (1927), The Chianti Flask (1934), and Motive (1938).  Lowndes' personal life sounds almost as interesting as her fiction—socializing as a girl with Constance and Oscar Wilde, maintaining friendships with the likes of Henry James, Rhoda Broughton, and Margot Asquith, being president of the Women Writers' Suffrace League, and helping young writers including Graham Greene, Margaret Kennedy, and E. M. Delafield.  The ODNB also includes the fascinating tidbit that Ernest Hemingway became a fan of Lowndes' work after a recommendation from Gertrude Stein.  Happily, some at least of her interesting experiences must be recounted in her four bestselling memoirs—I, Too, Have Lived in Arcadia (1941), Where Love and Friendship Dwelt (1943), The Merry Wives of Westminster (1946), and A Passing World (1948).

HELEN MACINNES (1907-1985)
(married name Highet)
Bestselling Scottish author of more than 20 spy novels, often dealing with individuals fighting vast forces of darkness—Nazis, Communists, or terrorists, depending on their locale and time period.  MacInnes is known for her vivid and detailed portrayals of a wide array of international settings.  Her debut, Above Suspicion (1941), was inspired by a visit to prewar Nazi Germany, and Assignment in Brittany (1942) and While Still We Live (1944) make use of the resistance movements in France and Poland—the latter so realistically that Washington apparently asked for her sources.  Others include Horizon (1945), Neither Five Nor Three (1951), Pray for a Brave Heart (1955), Decision at Delphi (1960), The Salzburg Connection (1968), and Ride a Pale Horse (1984).  Interestingly, MacInnes also published a few novels primarily focused on romance or humor rather than intrigue.  Friends and Lovers (1947) appears to be a partially-autobiographical romantic novel; Rest and Be Thankful (1949) is a comedy about an author adjusting to life on a Wyoming dude ranch; and Home Is the Hunter (1964) is described as "a comic modernization of Ulysses' return from the Trojan War, with his activities described as an ancient resistance movement."

PHYLLIS MACVEAN (1892-1967)
(aka Phyllis Hambledon)
Author of romance, romantic suspense, and mysteries from the 1920s to 1960s, most of it under her Hambledon pseudonym.  She has little web presence, so it's not entirely easy to tell which are her mystery titles, but some likely suspects include Invitation to Terror (1950), I Know a Secret (1950), Keys for the Criminal (1958), Murder and Miss Ming (1959), Passports to Murder (1959), and Murder's No Picnic (1960).  If you've read any of Macvean's fiction or know anything about her, please let me know.

BARBARA MALIM (1893-1968)
(married name Ashley)
Author of five novels, some of which at least sound like mysteries or thrillers, including "To This End" (1927), Missing from Monte Carlo (1929), Death by Misadventure (1934), By That Sin (1935), and Murder on Holiday (1937).

LUCY BEATRICE MALLESON (1899-1973)
(aka Lucy Egerton, aka Anthony Gilbert, aka J. Kilmeny Keith, aka Sylvia Denys Hooke, aka Anne Meredith)
Prolific author of mysteries under her Gilbert pseudonym, featuring Arthur Crook, as well as mainstream fiction as Anne Meredith. Her many titles include The Tragedy at Freyne (1927), The Murder of Mrs. Davenport (1928), Death At Four Corners (1929), The Night of the Fog (1930), The Body on the Beam (1932), Death in Fancy Dress (1933), The Musical Comedy Crime (1933), An Old Lady Dies (1934), The Man Who Was Too Clever (1935), Murder by Experts (1936), Murder Has No Tongue (1937), The Bell of Death (1939), Dear Dead Woman (1940), Mrs Boot's Legacy (1941), The Case of the Tea-Cosy's Aunt (1942), Something Nasty in the Woodshed (1942)—a reference to Stella Gibbons' Cold Comfort Farm? or was this expression already in use prior to Gibbons' immortalizing it?— Don't Open the Door! (1945), The Spinster's Secret (1946), Death Knocks Three Times (1949), A Fig for Virtue (1951), Miss Pinnegar Disappears (1952), Is She Dead Too? (1955), Death Against the Clock (1958), No Dust in the Attic (1962), Ring for a Noose (1963), Passenger to Nowhere (1965), Missing From Her Home (1969), and Murder's a Waiting Game (1972). Mystery scholar Curtis Evans has speculated that she may have been the friend and fellow author who anonymously completed Annie Haynes' final novel, The Crystal Beads Murder (1930).

ADELAIDE FRANCES OKE MANNING (1891-1959)
(aka Manning Coles, aka Francis Gaite [both with Cyril Henry Coles])
Popular author (with Cyril Henry Coles, who was—in one of the oddest origins for a partnership in all of literature—her neighbor in Hampshire) of a humorous series of mysteries and spy novels featuring Tommy Hambledon, and later of several satirical ghost stories.  In their discussion of Manning Coles, Rue Morgue Press notes of the pair's debut: "Its realistic portrayal of the real world of espionage is what makes Drink to Yesterday one of the most important books in the development of the spy novel."  Subsequent Tommy Hambledon novels include Pray Silence (1940, aka A Toast for Tomorrow), Without Lawful Authority (1943), Green Hazard (1945), Diamonds to Amsterdam (1949), Night Train to Paris (1952), and Death of an Ambassador (1957).  In 1954, the pair decided to try something new and launched a series of four humorous ghost stories (published in the U.S. under the Coles name, but in the U.K., for whatever reason known only to publishers, as Francis Gaite)—Brief Candles (1954), Happy Returns (1955, aka A Family Matter), The Far Traveller (1956), and Come and Go (1958).  Before her collaborations with Coles began, Manning published a single novel on her own.  Half-Valdez (1939) was, according to Rue Morgue, " a fanciful tale of a hunt for lost Spanish treasure hidden in the days of the Armada in a remote outpost on the British coast."  Well, why not?

JEAN MARSH (1897-1991)
(pseudonym of Evelyn Marshall, née Pass, aka Lesley Bourne)
Radio screenwriter, children's author, and novelist; her early novels are mainly mysteries, about which I can find few details (Google searches are hindered by the fact that she shares her name with the well-known British actress). The mystery titles are The Shore House Mystery (1931), Murder Next Door (1933), Death Stalks the Bride (1943), Identity Unwanted (1951), Death Visits the Circus (1953), The Pattern Is Murder (1954), Death Among the Stars (1955), and Death at Peak Hour (1957); in the 1970s until the 1990s, she published around twenty romantic novels.

HOWARD MASON (1925-????)
(pseudonym of Jennifer Anne Susan Ramage)
Daughter of actress Cathleen Nesbitt and an actress herself, as well as the author of four crime novels—Proud Adversary (1951), The Red Bishop (1953), Photo Finish (1954), and Body Below (1955). Proud Adversary was described as a "tale of adventure in the Buchan tradition." Of The Red Bishop, Kirkus said, "An old castle with its well kept secrets and its subterranean passages, a monstrous game of living chess which had been played in the 16th century and the telltale treasure which is found in a tower, all contrive a melodrama which may be unlikely but has an ingratiating verve—and nerve." Photo Finish appears to have been turned into a zany spy movie called Follow That Horse!, but it's unclear whether the comedy element was part of the novel or if Hollywood took liberties. A bookseller describes Body Below as a "good, readable mixture of adventure and detection in an unusual and exotic situation," but no mention of what the unusual and exotic situation is.

CHRISTABEL MCLAREN (1890-1974)
(née MacNaghten, aka Baroness Aberconway)
Author of only one novel, The Divine Gift (1929), described as a "mystery novel of a woman who makes a startling discovery when she searches the bags of two fellow train travelers"; McLaren also published a collection of poems and what seems to be a children's book illustrated by Rex Whistler.

L. T. MEADE (1844–1914)
(pseudonym of Elizabeth Thomasina Meade, married name Smith)
Best known as a writer of girls' stories, the enormously prolific Meade also wrote romance, thrillers, and sensation novels as well as works that explored social problems.  In the 1890s, she collaborated with Clifford Halifax M.D. (pseudonym of Edgar Beaumont) to write six volumes of crime stories, including Stories from the Diary of a Doctor.  Some of Meade's other mysteries or thrillers include The Brotherhood of the Seven Kings (1899), which introduced a female master villain, The Sorceress of the Strand (1903), A Maid of Mystery (1904), I Will Sing a New Song (1909), and Micah Faraday, Adventurer (1910).

GLADYS [MAUDE WINIFRED] MITCHELL (1901-1983)
(aka Stephen Hockaby, aka Malcolm Torrie)
Gladys Mitchell—referred to by no less a figure than Philip Larkin as “the great Gladys”—was a major Golden Age mystery author, writing 66 novels under her own name featuring the gloriously strange (and strangely lovable) forensic psychiatrist Beatrice Adela Lestrange Bradley (later Dame Beatrice).  Among her most acclaimed Mrs. Bradley tales are The Saltmarsh Murders (1932), Come Away, Death (1937), St. Peter's Finger (1938), When Last I Died (1941), Laurels Are Poison (1942), The Rising of the Moon (1945), Tom Brown's Body (1949), and The Twenty-Third Man (1957).  (A particular favorite of mine is 1975's Convent on Styx, which is a quieter novel making fascinating use of day-to-day life in a convent.)  Happily, it has just gotten a lot easier to read the Mrs. Bradley novels, as Thomas & Mercer have now made them all available as e-books.  They also seem to have added to their list Mitchell's six long-unavailable late mysteries written under the pseudonym Malcolm Torrie, though her early historical adventure novels written as Stephen Hockaby remain in obscurity.  Mitchell also wrote nine novels for children, mostly mysteries for younger readers, but also including On Your Marks, a girls’ career novel dealing with Mitchell’s own area of expertise, physical education—which, happily, was reprinted by Greyladies last year.  Whatever you do, be sure to check out Jason Hall’s amazing website, which includes a cornucopia of information, book covers, bibliographies, essays, and reviews on Mitchell’s many works. 

LORNA NICHOLL MORGAN (dates unknown)
A mystery in herself, Morgan wrote four mystery novels in the 1940s— Murder in Devils' Hollow (1944), Talking of Murder (1945, briefly discussed here), The Death Box (1946), and Another Little Murder (1947).

PATRICIA MOYES (1923-2000)
(née Pakenham-Walsh, later married name Haszard)
Mystery writer whose novels usually feature Scotland Yard Chief Inspector Henry Tibbett and his wife Emmy, whose close, convincing relationship and believable teamwork add depth and charm to the series.  Moyes incorporated many of the interests she and her husband shared in real life, which results in vivid details about skiing in her debut novel Dead Men Don't Ski (1959) and sailing in the follow-up, The Sunken Sailor (1961, aka Down Among the Dead Men), as well as realistic details of life in the Netherlands in Death and the Dutch Uncle (1968) and Night Ferry to Death (1970).  Murder a la Mode (1963) reflects her time working for Vogue, and Falling Star incorporates her experiences in the film industry.  Rue Morgue has a lovely article about Moyes and her work.  Other titles include Death on the Agenda (1962), Johnny Under Ground (1965), To Kill a Coconut (1966, aka The Coconut Killings), The Curious Affair of the Third Dog (1973), A Six-Letter Word for Death (1983), and Twice in a Blue Moon (1993).

20 comments:

  1. "Only this morning I made a correction to part 1 of the list, in which I had referred to Pamela Branch's debut novel as The Wicked Overcoat instead of The Wooden Overcoat."

    That is so funny! I had noted "The Wicked Overcoat" with interest, as it put me in mind of "Under the Cloak", a short story by Rhoda Broughton.

    "Great Heavens! what is going to happen to me? what shall I do? how much of him is *real*? where are his *real* hands? what is going on under that awful cloak?"

    Great list. I look forward to Part 3!
    Jane

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    1. Thank you, Jane. It's so odd I didn't even take particular note of the title when I was typing it (repeatedly). I would have thought I might have wondered what exactly it was that made an overcoat wicked. But perhaps the Rhoda Broughton story answers that question!

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  2. Wow! I just love all those images you've tracked down.

    I had no idea that Dulcie Gray wrote novels, thanks for that info.

    I think I've read all Helen MacInnes's books; I love a cold war thriller.

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    1. Thank you, Barbara. I actually don't think I've ever seen Gray in a film, so I'm going to have to track one down. Believe it or not, I have still not read any MacInnes. Do you have a particular recommendation?

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    2. Scott, you czn kill two birds eith one stone by finding a copy of The Franchise Affair - the movie of the Josephine Tey, starring Dulcie Gray and her husbsnd Michael Denison.

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    3. Thanks for the suggestion, Grace. How frustrating that it looks like the first half of the movie is available on YouTube, but not the second half! But I'll keep it in ming and will track it down by hook or by crook.

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  3. I know L.T.Meade well, but only her school stories, which are among the earliest written in the Girls Own genre. I had no clue that she also wrote thrillers. Same applies to Hilda Lewis. We live and learn!

    What an extraordinary title and cover "Queens Have Died Young and Fair", particularly with the rider that it's a murder mystery of unusual quality. I must try to track it down.

    I love Gladys Mitchell but she can be very patchy. I'll have a reread of Convent on Styx if I can find my copy.

    A brilliant list - thank you again.

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    1. Thanks, Cestina. I'd like to track down both of Keynes/Hunter's WWII mysteries, but judging from a quick library search, I think they may both belong on my Hopeless Wish List (when I finally get around to updating it). There are no circulating copies of either in US libraries, and only Salute to the Brave is available on Amazon, at the discouraging price of $80+.

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    2. Oh, and FYI, Convent on Styx is probably not one of Mitchell's most satisfying mysteries, as far as the whodunit or the puzzle go, but I loved it for it's view of convent life.

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    3. It doesn't bother me if the puzzle element isn't strong; I love the background stories.....

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  4. I am overwhelmed just reading your lists, Scott! Wow! BTW, is Mavis Doriel Hay on your list? I'm just reading her three republished by the British library....They're on my Kindle.

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    1. Thank you, Kristi. Actually, Geraldine emailed me about Hay, so she will go into my next update, but there wasn't time to get her into this update. Hay sounds very intriguing, and I love that the BL made them available in the US as well. Have you enjoyed her work so far?

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    2. Have just ordered a used-good copy from Amazon, to be delivered ... sometime. Will see how she reads!
      del,
      curlsnskirls.wordpress.com

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  5. Another AMAZING list here - thank you. I had no idea that Ruby Ferguson had written crime fiction - I love both Jill and Mrs Memmary, so shall definitely add these to my wishlist. You've made me very curious now too re the supernatural reference.

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    1. Thanks, Vicki! The R. C. Ashby books are difficult to find, apart from the one reprinted by Valancourt, but I read three of them and enjoyed them. They are unconventional and quirky and uneven by the standard of traditional mysteries, but interesting if you're a fan of her later work or enjoy the supernatural/gothic elements.

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  6. HELEN JEAN MARY EDMISTON writing as HELEN ROBERTSON

    "The Winged Witnesses" (1955)

    Details:
    http://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1301&dat=19550702&id=GXZWAAAAIBAJ&sjid=8uQDAAAAIBAJ&pg=4031,5821399

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    1. Thank you for sharing this. I'm saving the review for my records--it makes me rather intrigued about Edmiston's work!

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  7. First time commenter, but long time reader of our wonderful blog! I wanted to chip in on Elizabeth Ferrars and Celia Fremlin, both of whom are writers I particularly love. Ferrars's books are very steadily entertaining and readable, and especially the titles from the 1940s through the 1970s have a lot of charm and quirk. "Enough to Kill a Horse" is her best novel, in my opinion - wonderful characters well developed, highly ingenuous plot. There is a significant drop off in quality that starts in the 70s and gets very apparent in the 80s and 90s - those novels are still readable, but workmanlike and on the bland side, though some of the plots are outrageous in a very polite way (one late novel even has incest!).

    Fremlin is a very different writer - her novels aren't mysteries, more thrillers. She's very creative and extremely, extremely funny, though her novels often get very dark, too. I can't think of another writer like her, actually. "The Jealous One" and "Appointment with Yesterday" might be my favorites of hers, but I love most of her novels.

    Finally, I do own a copy of Deadly Lampshade, and I was excited to read it, but that novel has a ton of bizarre homophobic psychobabble. There are many gay characters and they are all odious, and everyone has interminable conversations about how disgusting homosexuality is - as well as interminable conversations about many other things. I get the sense that Gray is perhaps trying to emulate Iris Murdoch or another writer in that school, but she's doing it very, very badly and distastefully. The sentiments are of their time, I suppose, but they are so heavy handed that I just could not keep going with the novel.

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    1. Hi, Kacper, so glad you decided to comment, and thank you for the details you provided. I'm certainly going to have to get around to Ferrars soon, and Fremlin sounds intriguing too. What a shame about the Dulcie Gray book, though I have to admit that now I am slightly tempted to check it out just to see how bad it is!

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  8. Death on the Cherwell, by Hay has also been released as an Audible audiobook. Since it was published the same year as Gaudy Night by Sayers, and also set at a woman's Oxford College, very interesting to compare the two books. I am currently listening to Death on the Cherwell, and enjoying it.

    Jerri

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