Theodore Edward le Bouthillier Allbeury (24 October 1917 - 4 December 2005) was a British author of espionage fiction. Between 1965 and 1967 he had been the managing director of the fort-based pirate radio station Radio 390, later moving to the ship-based Radio 355 (see under Swinging Radio England for details) until its closure in August of 1967. During World War II, Allbeury served in Britain's Special Operations Executive.
His first novel, A Choice of Enemies, was published in 1972. Allbeury went on to publish over 40 novels, under his own name as well as Patrick Kelly and Richard Butler.
see Kathleen Moore Knight
Victor Canning (16 June 1911 – 21 February 1986) was a prolific writer of novels and thrillers who flourished in the 1950s, '60s and '70's. He was personally reticent, writing no memoirs and giving relatively few newspaper interviews.
Canning was born in Plymouth, Devon, the eldest child of a coach builder, Fred Canning, and his wife May, née Goold. During World War I his father served as an ambulance driver in France and Flanders, while he with his two sisters went to live in the village of Calstock ten miles north of Plymouth, where his uncle Cecil Goold worked for the railways and later became station master. After the war the family returned to Plymouth. In the mid-1920s they moved to Oxford where his father had found work, and Victor attended the Oxford Central School. Here he was encouraged to stay on at school and go to university by a classical scholar, Dr. Henderson, but the family could not afford it and instead Victor went to work as a clerk in the education office at age 16.
Within three years he had started selling short stories to boys' magazines and in 1934, his first novel. Mr. Finchley Discovers his England, was accepted by Hodder and Stoughton and became a runaway best seller. He gave up his job and started writing full-time, producing thirteen more novels in the next six years under three different names. Lord Rothermere engaged him to write for the Daily Mail, and a number of his travel articles for the Daily Mail were collected as a book with illustrations by Leslie Stead under the title Everyman's England in 1936. He also continued to write short stories.
He married Phyllis McEwen in 1935, a girl from a theatrical family whom he met while she was working with a touring vaudeville production at Weston-super-Mare. They had three daughters, Lindel born in 1939, Hilary born in 1940, and Virginia who was born in 1942, but died in infancy.
In 1940 he enlisted in the Army, and was sent for training with the Royal Artillery in Llandrindod Wells in mid-Wales, where he trained alongside his friend Eric Ambler. Both were commissioned as second lieutenants in 1941. Canning worked in anti-aircraft batteries in the south of England until early 1943, when he was sent to North Africa and took part in the Allied invasion of Sicily and the Italian campaigns. At the end of the war he was assigned to an Anglo-American unit doing experimental work with radar range-finding. It was top secret work but nothing to do with espionage, though Canning never discouraged the assumption of publishers and reviewers that his espionage stories were partly based on experience. He was discharged in 1946 with the rank of major.
He resumed writing with The Chasm (1947), a novel about identifying a Nazi collaborator who has hidden himself in a remote Italian village. A film of this was planned but never finished. Canning's next book, Panther's Moon, was filmed as Spy Hunt, and from now on Canning was established as someone who could write a book a year in the suspense genre, have them reliably appear in book club and paperback editions on both sides of the Atlantic, be translated into the main European languages, and in many cases get filmed. He himself spent a year in Hollywood working on scripts for movies of his own books and on TV shows. The money earned from the film of The Golden Salamander (filmed with Trevor Howard) meant that Canning could buy a substantial country house with some land in Kent, Marle Place, where he lived for nearly twenty years and where his daughter continues to live now. From the mid-1950s onwards his books became more conventional, full of exotic settings, stirring action sequences and stock characters. In 1965 he began a series of four books featuring a private detective called Rex Carver, and these were among his most successful in sales terms.
Some time at the end of the '60s he began an affair with Diana Bird, the estranged wife of a solicitor living in the area, which led to his separation from Phyllis and leaving the family home in 1968 to settle in Devon. He had to wait five years for his divorce, and finally married Diana Bird in 1974. She died in February 1976. The six and a half years that they lived together were an extraordinarily productive period for him, containing almost all of his best work, including the first five of his 'Birdcage' novels, a trilogy of books for children starting with The Runaways, and the beginning of a trilogy retelling the legends of King Arthur, The Crimson Chalice.
Canning married Adria Irving-Bell in November 1976, and they moved to Gloucestershire and then Herefordshire, then back to Gloucestershire. He continued writing a book a year, and started to write radio plays, of which three were broadcast. He died in Cirencester, Gloucestershire. His last book, Table Number Seven, was completed by his wife Adria and his sister Jean. Adria Canning continued to live in Cirencester, and died there in April 2005.
Canning seems to have been a generous and friendly man, an accomplished sportsman, keen on golf and latterly on fishing, as attested by his daughter (personal interview), the many descriptions of fishing in the books and stories after 1968, and by his dedicating a book to the cartoonist Alex Graham as his golfing partner. His love of and knowledge of English countryside and wildlife pervades his early and late work. His middle period thrillers are mainly set overseas since "in England you can always call a policeman", as he is reported to have said. In contrast, the 'Birdcage' books, beginning with Firecrest (1971) and including his masterpiece The Rainbird Pattern (1972) which was awarded the CWA Silver Dagger and nominated for the Edgar awards, were all far darker and more realistic than any of his earlier thrillers. They do not have conventional happy endings. The settings are mostly in the south of England, and the villains are often sinister government officials who crush the innocent bystanders who might expose them. (Wikipedia)
Carvic (21 January 1913 – 9 February 1980) was a British actor and writer who provided the voice for Gandalf in the BBC Radio version of The Hobbit. As a writer he created the characters and wrote the first five books featuring retired art teacher Miss Emily D. Seeton, a gentle parody of Agatha Christie's Miss Marple.
Further books nominally in the Miss Seeton series were then produced by two other writers using pseudonyms with "HC" initials. Roy Peter Martin as "Hampton Charles" wrote three novels, which were all released in 1990. Sarah J. Mason, writing as "Hamilton Crane", then took up the series writing 14 books in all, some of which are still in print. Mason's books modify Carvic's characters so much that only the names will be recognizable to readers of the first five books. (Wikipedia)
Leslie Charteris (12 May 1907 – 15 April 1993), born Leslie Charles Bowyer-Yin, was a British-American author of adventure fiction, as well as a screenwriter. He was best known for his many books chronicling the adventures of Simon Templar, alias "The Saint."
Charteris was born in Singapore to a Chinese father, Dr S. C. Yin (Yin Suat Chwan, 1877-1958), and his wife Lydia Florence Bowyer, who was English. His father was a physician who claimed to be able to trace his lineage back to the emperors of the Shang Dynasty.
Charteris became interested in writing at an early age. At one point he created his own magazine with articles, short stories, poems, editorials, serials and even a comic strip. He attended Rossall School in Fleetwood, Lancashire, England. In 1952 he married the Hollywood actress Audrey Long (1922-2014); the couple eventually returned to England where Leslie Charteris spent his last years living in Surrey. Leslie Charteris died at Windsor, Berkshire.
The adventures of The Saint were chronicled in nearly 100 books. Charteris himself stepped away from writing the books after The Saint in the Sun (1963). The next year Vendetta for the Saint was published and while it was credited to Charteris, it was actually written by science fiction writer Harry Harrison.
Reginald Evelyn Peter Southouse Cheyney (22 February 1896 – 26 June 1951) was a British crime fiction writer who flourished between 1936 and 1951. Cheyney is the author of hard-boiled short stories and novels in the American style, most famously a series of ten novels about agent/detective Lemmy Caution, which, starting in 1953, were adapted into a series of French movies, all starring Eddie Constantine. (The most well-known of these, the 1965 science fiction film Alphaville, was not directly based on a Cheyney novel.)
His other memorable creation is Slim Callaghan, a somewhat disreputable private detective most at home in the less savoury sections of London.
Although Cheyney's novels sold in the millions during his lifetime, he is almost forgotten today, and his works are mostly out of print. (Wikipedia)
Colter was a pseudonym of May Eliza Frost Hawkins FaGalde. Frost was born September 30, 1890 in Portland, Oregon.
A prolific pulp writer with hundreds of published stories to her credit, the author worked mostly in the Western genre, but also contributed to "Weird Stories" and wrote a handful of mystery/detective novels in the 1940s and 1950s.
Frost died May 30, 1984.
Curtiss was the daughter of mystery writer Helen (Kieran) Reilly. She was born April 8, 1923 in Yonkers, New York. She married John Curtiss on April 27, 1947.
Curtiss studied at Westport Connecticut College and worked as a copywriter and columnist before becoming a full-time self employed writer.
Curtiss died of cancer on October 10, 1984 in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Doris Miles Disney
Disney (December 22, 1907 – March 9, 1976) was born in Glastonbury, Connecticut, and died in Fredericksburg, Virginia. Disney wrote 49 novels. Many of her novels were both best sellers and the bases for major feature films.
Disney was known for her character development and the creative mystery surrounding her plots. Most of her main characters were based on acquaintances known to her or her daughter, Elizabeth. Disney liked to use her society experiences as a female character base for novels.
She was survived by one daughter, Elizabeth Miles Disney, a writer and theater actress, as well as a granddaughter, Sarah Elizabeth Laing. (Wikipedia)
Theodore S. Drachman, M.D.
Theodore Solomon Drachman was born August 31, 1904 in New York, son of Rabbi Dr. Bernard and Sarah Weil Drachman. Drachman was a public health official and an author.
Drachman attended the University of Minnesota, where he earned his M.D. in 1938, and then earned an M.S.P.H. at Columbia University in 1941. He was a specialist in preventive medicine and epidemiology. He was deputy health commissioner for Westchester County in New York, and health commissioner for Columbia and Ulster counties in New York between 1946 and 1979. He also worked as a consultant to various health organizations around the world.
Drachman died on July 13, 1988, at the age of 83, at his home in Philmont, New York, of cardiac arrest.
Theodora Du Bois
DuBois was born Theodora Brenton Eliot McCormick in Brooklyn on September 14, 1890 to Eliot McCormick and Laura Case Brenton McCormick. Du Bois' father died when she was a year old. Laura remarried in 1897 and her second husband, Charles MacDonald (1857-1945), was a lawyer and Wall Street broker. He had a son, Sam (1886-1965), from a previous marriage, and together the couple had one child that survived infancy, Howard (1898-1965). Although Du Bois continued to visit her father's relatives, her stepfather and mother were not on good terms with them. A poor relationship with her stepfather is reflected in Du Bois' writing.
From 1897-1900, the family lived in Manhattan and Du Bois attended the Barnard School for Girls. After moving to Yonkers in 1900, Du Bois attended the Halsted School and received a classical education. She was diagnosed with tuberculosis at 21 and spent several months in a sanatorium. She wrote poetry and plays, including children's plays, and attended the Dartmouth Summer School for Drama in 1916. She co-authored Amateur and Educational Dramatics (1917) with Evelyne Hilliard and Kate Oglebay.
Theodora met Delafield Du Bois in Connecticut in 1917, and they were married the following year. Delafield Du Bois was ten years older than Theodora. He was an electrical engineer but also pursued other research interests. The Du Bois's moved to Dongan Hills on Staten Island. The couple had two children, Theodora in 1919 and Eliot in 1922. Du Bois continued writing short stories and plays. Her first published short story, "Thursday and the King and Queen," was published in Women's Home Companion in 1920 and she continued to publish short stories throughout the 1920's. In 1928, Delafield Du Bois left his job to pursue research and the family went to Europe for 18 months, spending time in Munich, Cambridge, Italy and Ireland. The experiences from this travel informed many of Du Bois' future works.
Du Bois went on to try writing novels and the first, The Devil's Spoon, was published in 1930. The family moved to Connecticut during this period, and Du Bois wrote plays. In 1934, the family moved to New Haven where they lived until Delafield Du Bois' retirement after the end of World War II (1946). Du Bois now began detective writing in earnest. Twenty of her detective stories were published during 1941-1954, and many were translated and published abroad.
On Delafield's retirement the Du Bois's bought a boat, and spent nine months of each of the three successive years sailing. A number of Du Bois' novels are based upon her sailing experiences including Rogue's Coat (1949). The family returned to Dongan Hills on Staten Island but later spent time in Ireland.
Du Bois began to experience professional difficulties during the 1950's. She changed agents early in 1952, leaving Paul R. Reynolds, who had been her agent since the 1910's, and going to McIntosh & Otis. This was partially because a cousin by marriage, Mary Abbot, was a partner in McIntosh & Otis, but also because the Reynolds agency encouraged her to write a historical novel on Ireland, Where the Blackthorn Grows, which was rejected by publishers. There were also problems associated with the publication of Seeing Red (1954). Seeing Red was part of the series of McNeill mystery stories that had begun with Armed with a New Terror (1936). The book was a sequel to Murder Strikes an Atomic Unit (1946), which dealt with the theft of atomic secrets. The plot of Seeing Red involves the appearance of the McNeills as suspects before the House Un-American Activities Committee. Du Bois had been appalled when she had gone to Washington to research and observe the committee and portrayed it negatively in the book. The caused backlash against her and the book's publisher, Doubleday, received angry letters on the issue, although Du Bois was not informed of them at the time due to health problems. Doubleday did not publish any additional McNeill mysteries after this incident, although they had previously published several of Du Bois' books as part of their Crime Club.
Except for Freedom's Way (1953), which made the New York Times Best Seller list, Du Bois's later novels were not particularly successful. Despite these personal and professional setbacks, Du Bois continued writing and the collection contains several unpublished manuscripts written in her later years.
Her series detective is a forensic scientist, Dr Jeffrey McNeill, aided by his wife, Anne, who narrates the stories.
Du Bois died February 1, 1986.
Mignon G. Eberhart
Mignonette Good was born July 6, 1899, in Lincoln, Nebraska. As a teenager, Good often wrote short stories and novels to occupy herself. From 1917 to 1920 she attended Nebraska Wesleyan University but did not complete the coursework for a degree. In 1923 she married Alanson Clyde Eberhart, and began writing short stories to combat boredom. Within several years she had begun writing novels, and in 1929 she published her first novel, The Patient in Room 18. Her second novel, While the Patient Slept, received the $5000 Scotland Yard Prize in 1931. Four years later her alma-mater presented her with an honorary doctorate degree.
By the end of the 1930s, Eberhart had become the leading female crime novelist in the United States and was one of the highest paid female crime novelists in the world, next to Agatha Christie. Known as "America's Agatha Christie," she wrote a total of 59 novels, the last published in 1988, shortly before her 89th birthday. Eight of her novels were adapted as movies, beginning in 1935 with While the Patient Slept. The last adaptation, based on the book Hasty Wedding, was the movie Three's a Crowd released in 1945.
The normally prolific Eberhart delivered fewer books in the 1940s, possibly due to upheaval in her personal life. After twenty years of marriage, Eberhart divorced her husband and remarried in 1946 to John Hazen Perry. Within two years she had divorced her second husband and remarried Alanson Eberhart. Eberhart was a Lt. Commander in the US Navy during WW II and died in 1974. He is buried in the Long Island National Cemetery in Farmington, NY. When Mignon died she was buried alongside him at the same gravesite.
Eberhart was one of the founders of the modern romantic suspense novel. In an unusual twist for the time, her mysteries featured female heroines. The year after her first novel was published, Agatha Christie followed her lead and introduced another female detective, Jane Marple.
Her works often featured female heroines, and tended to include exotic locations, wealthy characters, and suspense and romance. Her characterization is good, and her characters always have "genuine and believable motives for everything they do." Her "writing is spare but almost lyrical."
In 1971 she was awarded the Mystery Writers of America's Grand Master Award. Eberhart also served as president of the Mystery Writers of America. In 1994 she received the Agatha Award: Malice Domestic Award for Lifetime Achievement. (Wikipedia)
Elizabeth Fenwick Way was born April 5, 1916. Way was an American writer who also wrote as E.P. Fenwick. She has produced general novels and juvenile fiction as well as mystery stories.
She died November 20, 1996 in Lakewood, Colorado.
Elizabeth Ferrars (6 September 1907 – 30 March 1995), born Morna Doris MacTaggart, was a British crime writer. Though the majority of Ferrars's works are standalone novels, she wrote several series. Her first five novels all feature Toby Dyke, a freelance journalist, and his companion, George, who uses several surnames and is implied to be a former criminal. Late in her career, she began writing about a semi-estranged married couple, Virginia and Felix Freer, and a retired botanist, Andrew Basnett. Several of her short stories also feature an elderly detective called Jonas P. Jonas.Her extraordinary output owes a great deal to considerable self-discipline and diligent method. Her plots were worked out in detail in hand-written notebooks before being filled out in typed manuscript; she said that they were worked backwards from the denouement. Like every writer, she based characters and situations on people she knew and things she had seen in real life.
Erle Stanley Gardner
Gardner (July 17, 1889 – March 11, 1970) was an American lawyer and author. Though best known for the Perry Mason series of detective stories, he wrote numerous other novels and shorter pieces, as well as a series of non-fiction books, mostly narrations of his travels through Baja California and other regions in Mexico. The best-selling American author of the twentieth century at the time of his death, he also published under numerous pseudonyms, including A.A. Fair, Kyle Corning, Charles M. Green, Carleton Kendrake, Charles J. Kenny, Les Tillray and Robert Parr. (Wikipedia)
Anthony Gilbert was a pen name of Lucy Beatrice Malleson (15 February 1899 – 9 December 1973). She published 69 crime novels, 51 of which featured her best-known character, Arthur Crook. Crook is a vulgar London lawyer totally (and deliberately), unlike the aristocratic detectives who dominated the mystery field when Gilbert introduced him such as Lord Peter Wimsey. Instead of dispassionately analyzing a case, he usually enters it after seemingly damning evidence has built up against his client, then conducts a no-holds-barred investigation of doubtful ethics to clear him or her. As fellow mystery author Michael Gilbert noted, "...he behaved in a way which befitted his name and would not have been approved by the Law Society." The first Crook novel was published in 1936 and was immediately popular. The last Crook novel was published in 1974. (Wikipedia)
Bartholomew Gill was the pen name of Mark C. McGarrity was an Irish-American crime fiction and mystery novelist and newspaper features writer and columnist writing on nature and outdoor recreation for The Star-Ledger. He was the author of 22 mystery novels, set in Ireland, and featuring a "resourceful police detective named Peter McGarr." For a pen name, McGarrity used the name of his grandfather, Bartholomew Gill, who "was a great storyteller." He also wrote five novels and a work of nonfiction under his real name, and his writings for the Star-Ledger were published under his own name.
Mark C. McGarrity was born on 22 July 1943 in Holyoke, Massachusetts. He received a bachelor's degree from Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island, and a master's degree from Trinity College, Dublin.
McGarrity died at the age of 58 on 4 July 2002 from injuries sustained in a fall at his Morristown, New Jersey home. He had forgotten his keys and attempted to enter his home by climbing through a window. McGarrity was buried in Newton Cemetery, in Newton, New Jersey, where his gravestone identifies him by both his real name and pen name, and as "author, outdoorsman, Maddie's father."
Josephine Eckert Gill
Josephine Pauline Eckert was born December 22, 1921 in Nuremberg, Germany to Joseph S. and Charlotte (Kadeder) Eckert. She graduated from Ottawa (Ohio) High School in 1939 and earned her M.A. in English from the University of Michigan in 1944.
Gill won the $800 Avery Hopwood prize for 1946 for her novel The Practicing of Christopher. Eckert went on to pen a few Crime Club mysteries in the 1950s, under the name Josephine Eckert Gill. Josephine taught at the University of Missouri in Columbia, Missouri.
Gill died February 6, 2006 at her home in Mansfield, Ohio following a short illness.
Gruber (born February 2, 1904, Elmer, Minnesota, died December 9, 1969, Santa Monica, California) was an American writer, best known for his Westerns and his detective stories. He sometimes wrote under the pen names Stephen Acre, Charles K. Boston and John K. Vedder.
Gruber—who stated that only seven types of Westerns existed—wrote more than 300 stories for over 40 pulp magazines, as well as more than sixty novels and more than 200 screenplays and television scripts. He bragged that he could write a complete mystery novel in 16 days and then use the other 14 days of the month to knock out a historical serial for a magazine. Gruber said that, while in the Army, he learned how to manipulate the dice to throw 35 consecutive sevens, but that he had "lost this skill through lack of practice." (Wikipedia)
Brett Halliday (July 31, 1904 – February 4, 1977), primary pen name of Davis Dresser, was an American mystery writer, best known for the long-lived series of Michael Shayne novels he wrote, and later commissioned others to write. Dresser wrote non-series mysteries, westerns and romances under the names Asa Baker, Matthew Blood, Kathryn Culver, Don Davis, Hal Debrett, Anthony Scott, Peter Field, and Anderson Wayne.
Dresser was born in Chicago, Illinois, but mostly grew up in West Texas. Here he lost an eye to barbed wire as a boy, and thus had to wear an eye patch for the rest of his life. At the age of 14, he ran away from home and enlisted in the U.S. 5th Cavalry Regiment at Fort Bliss, Texas, followed by a year of Border Patrol duty on the Rio Grande. After his service, he returned to Texas to finish high school. In search of adventure, Dresser traveled throughout the Southwest working at various odd jobs, including that of muleskinner, farm hand, deckhand on a freighter in the Gulf of Mexico, laborer in the California oilfields, etc. Eventually, he went to Tri-State College of Engineering, where he received a certificate in civil engineering. Back in Texas, he worked as an engineer and surveyor for several years before turning to writing in 1927.
After his first marriage (to Kathleen Rollins, who had two daughters from a previous marriage), Dresser was married to mystery writer Helen McCloy from 1946 to 1961; they had a daughter named Chloe. As partners, they formed a literary agency called Halliday and McCloy. Dresser also established a publishing company Torquil Publishing Company, which published his books as well as those of other authors, from 1953 to 1965. In 1961, he married Mary Savage, also a writer; their son, Halliday, was born in 1965.
The first Shayne novel was rejected by 21 publishers before being accepted by Henry Holt & Co. in 1939. The Shayne series went on to be highly successful, reprinted in many editions and translated into French, Spanish, Italian, German, Swedish, Japanese and Hebrew. A radio series based on the Shayne character was heard during the 1940s. Twelve motion pictures were made, seven of them featuring Lloyd Nolan as Shayne. Five of the Nolan films, which were produced by 20th Century Fox, have been released on DVD: Michael Shayne, Private Detective; Sleepers West; Dressed to Kill; Blue, White and Perfect; and The Man Who Wouldn't Die. After the Fox series ended, five more Shayne films were made by PRC which featured Hugh Beaumont as the detective. There was also a TV series in 1960, starring Richard Denning, as well as a pulp fiction magazine that began as Michael Shayne Mystery Magazine and ran for nearly 30 years. The 2005 film Kiss Kiss Bang Bang is based partly on Halliday's novel Bodies Are Where You Find Them.
Dresser was a founding member of the Mystery Writers of America, and in 1954 he and McCloy were given Edgar Awards for their critical writings on the genre.
He lived in Santa Barbara, California, until his death at the age of 72. (Wikipedia)
Julia Clara Catherine Dolores Birk Olsen Hitchens (1907-1973) was born in Texas, USA. She worked as a nurse and as a teacher before she started her writing career. She also wrote under the pseudonyms Dolan Birkley, Noel Burke, and DB Olsen. She also wrote together with her husband Hubert Allen ('Bert') Hitchens. Having wisely decided to pare down her real name when she began writing books, she was able to make up several pseudonyms from it. She wrote a large number of lightweight mysteries, mostly in the cozy tradition, a few featuring the venerable sleuthing combination of a little old lady (Rachel Murdock) and her cat (Samantha). But she also wrote a pair of hardboiled mysteries featuring a private eye named Jim Sader, books squarely in the Chandlerite tradition and comparable to other such books by Howard Browne and Leigh Brackett. Sleep With Slander in particular is revered from critics ranging from Bill Pronzini to Kevin Burton Smith. Sader is an iconic Chandlerite hero: idealistic but sadly disillusioned, romantically hoping for the best from people but prepared for the worst. http://gadetection.pbworks.com/w/page/7930771/Hitchens
Samuel Harvey "Jack" Iams, Jr. was born in Baltimore on November 15, 1910, son of Dr. Samuel Harvey and Elizabeth S. Rouse Iams. After graduating from St. Paul's School and Princeton University in 1932, he became a reporter for The London Daily Mail. He then wrote for other newspapers - including The Daily News - and Newsweek. He became a television critic for The New York Herald Tribune and was an editor of Atlas magazine, which is now known as World Press Review.
He wrote 13 books, including ''The Countess to Boot,'' ''Propelled by Experience'' and ''Do Not Murder Before Christmas.'' A review in The New York Times Book Review said his 1939 novel, ''Table for Four,'' was ''as brilliantly witty as the best of the British brand,'' and favorably compared it to Evelyn Waugh's ''Vile Bodies.''
At Princeton, he was active in theatricals at the Triangle Club, along with James Stewart, Joshua Logan and Jose Ferrer. He was a member of the Players.
Eighteen years ago, he retired to Opio in the South of France, where he continued to write. Having sold their house, he and his wife were returning to the United States.
Iams died of a stroke on January 27, 1990. At the time of his death, he and his wife, Joan Walker Wenning Iams, were en route to New York City from London.
J. Lane Linklater
Joseph Lane Linklater was a pseudonym of Alex Watkins. Watkins also wrote under the name of Van Lacey.
Richard Orson Lockridge (September 26, 1898 in St. Joseph, Missouri - June 19, 1982 in Tryon, North Carolina) was an American writer of detective fiction. Richard Lockridge with his wife Frances created one of the most famous American mystery series, Mr. and Mrs. North. (Wikipedia)
Clarence Budington Kelland
Kelland was born in Portland, Michigan, on July 11, 1881, where he lived until he was ten years old.
Mr. Kelland was best known for his "Scattergood Baines" stories in the American Magazine. He also created such fictional heroes as Mark Tidd, Catty Atkins, Scipio, and Mr. Deeds. His short stories appeared regularly in serial form in the The American Boy, Saturday Evening Post, The American Magazine, Women's Home Companion, Country Gentleman and Munsey's magazines.
Kelland produced over sixty novels and over 400 short stories in his sixty-one years of writing. His boyhood memories of Portland were to form the basis for the characters and setting in many of his stories. Several of his writings provided the basis for motion pictures, radio programs, and television shows. He died February 18, 1964, at the age of 82. (www.clarencebudingtonkelland.com)
Baynard Hardwick Kendrick was born April 8, 1894 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, son of John Ryland and Julia Anna Adelaide (Lawton) Kendrick. Kendrick married Edythe Stevens about 1919. He died in Ocala, Florida on March 22, 1977.
Kendrick wrote novels about Duncan Maclain, a blind private investigator who worked with his two German shepherds and his household of assistants to solve murder mysteries. The novels were the basis for two films starring Edward Arnold, Eyes in the Night (1942) and The Hidden Eye (1945). Kendrick was credited by Stirling Silliphant for being the source of the Longstreet (TV series) character about a blind insurance investigator. He also wrote using the pseudonym Richard Hayward. His book Lights Out was filmed as Bright Victory.
Kendrick was born in Philadelphia and traveled to Canada as the first American citizen to enlist in the Canadian Army during World War I. He served in England, France, and Salonika. During his service, a fellow Philadelphian serving with the Canadians was blinded. When Kendrick visited him at St. Dunstan's he met a blind English soldier who had a remarkable ability to tell him things about himself that a person who could see may not have noticed. The Tommy fingered Kendrick's buttons, uniform and insignia and accurately and rapidly stated Kendrick's war service record.
Following the war Kendrick sold his first story to Field and Stream magazine while earning his living at Bin and Big's Hotels in New York. In 1931 he was let go from the company a week before Christmas and, vowing never again to work for an employer, began supporting himself by writing. After three books Kendrick started writing for pulp magazines, which paid well.
Kendrick's writing reflected two personal interests that he had developed - an interest in blind people and their coping skills and an interest in the history of Florida.
During World War II, Kendrick served as an instructor for blinded veterans giving him the material for his book Lights Out.
His novel Out of Control was adapted to an episode of the radio thriller series Suspense in 1946, featuring Brian Donlevy as Duncan Maclain.
The true story behind Kendrick's 1959 Hot Red Money was the basis for John Barron's Operation SOLO: The FBI's Man in the Kremlin.
Kendrick was one of the founders of the Mystery Writers of America, held its first membership card, and was its first president. (Wikipedia)
Kathleen Moore Knight
Knight was born May 19, 1890 in Massachusetts and died on July 30, 1984 in the village of Tisbury on the island of Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts. Knight also wrote a few under the pseudonym Alan Amos.
She began her literary career with the publication of Who Turned Off The Gas?, the first of about fifteen detective novels with hero Elisha Macomber, an amateur detective reminiscent of Phoebe Atwood Taylor's Asey Mayo.
She also wrote four mysteries featuring Margot Blair, partner in a public relations firm, Norman and Blair.
Edith Caroline Rivett was born in June 13, 1894 in Hendon, Middlesex, England. Rivett wrote under the pseudonyms E.C.R. Lorac, Carol Carnac, Carol Rivett and Mary le Bourne) was a British crime writer. She attended the South Hampstead High School, and the Central School of Arts and Crafts in London. She was a member of the Detection Club. She was a very prolific writer, having written forty-eight mysteries under her first pen name (Lorac), and twenty-three under her second (Carnac). Rivett died July 2, 1958 in Lunesdale, Lancashire, England.
Whit Masterson was a pen name for a partnership of two American authors, Robert Allison “Bob” Wade (June 8, 1920 – September 30, 2012) and H. Bill Miller (May 11, 1920 – August 21, 1961). The two also wrote under several other pseudonyms, including Wade Miller and Will Daemer.
Together they wrote more than thirty novels, of which several were adapted for film. Most famously, their novel Badge of Evil was adapted into the Orson Welles film Touch of Evil.
Wade and Miller met at violin lessons when they were both 12. From an interview with Wade: "The Wade Miller collaboration worked successfully largely because it began so early. We teamed up at the age of 12." They went on to attend college together at San Diego State, leaving in their senior year of college to enlist in the US Air Force.
Anthony Boucher reviewed their first novel, Deadly Weapon, in the San Francisco Chronicle in 1946. He described their writing as having "machinegun tempo, tight writing, unexaggerated hardness" and said it was a "highly satisfactory debut of new publishers and new writing team." (from the San Francisco Chronicle, April 6, 1946) A more recent reading by Richard Moore found that "modern readers would need to overcome instinctive reactions to racial and other slurs" but that "This was a stunning debut novel. It would be a shame if the language of the times kept it from revival."
After Miller's death from a heart attack on August 21, 1961, Wade went on to a solo career as a movie and television scriptwriter. In 1988, Wade was awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award by the Private Eye Writers of America. Wade also received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the San Diego Public Library in 1998 and the Ellen Nehr award from the American Crime Writers League in 2004, for his work reviewing crime fiction for the San Diego Union-Tribune. Robert Wade died, 92 years old, on Sept 30, 2012. (Wikipedia)
McCloy was born in New York City in 1904. Her mother was the writer Helen Worrell McCloy and father, William McCloy, was the longtime managing editor of the New York Evening Sun. Having read Sherlock Holmes as a young girl, McCloy retained an interest in mysteries and began to write them in the 1930s. Her first novel, Dance of Death, was published in 1933 and was followed by several other crime publications in the 1940s.
The most famous of McCloy’s characters was Dr. Basil Willing, who subsequently appeared in twelve of her novels and several short stories. McCloy often used the theme of doppelgänger, but at the end of each story she showed a psychological or realistic explanation for the seemingly supernatural events. What can be considered as one of McCloy’s masterpieces is the eighth Basil Willing novel, Through A Glass Darkly (1950), a supernatural puzzle in the tradition of Dickson Carr.
In 1946 McCloy married Davis Dresser, who had gained fame with his Mike Shayne novels, written under the pseudonym Brett Halliday. She founded with Dressler the Torquil Publishing Company and a literary agency (Halliday and McCloy). Their marriage ended in 1961. In the 1950s and 1960s McCloy was a co-author of review column for Connecticut newspapers and in 1950 she became the first woman to serve as president of Mystery Writers of America. In 1953 she received an Edgar from the same organization for her critics. (http://www.pollingerltd.com/estates/helen_mccloy.htm)
Mary (Reilly) McMullen Wilson was the daughter of mystery writer Helen (Kieran) Reilly. She was born in 1920 in Yonkers, New York. She married Alton Wilson.
She initially studied for a career as designer. After studying graphic arts, she became a fashion designer, then, for twenty years had various jobs in advertising agencies.
In the family tradition, she decided to write a detective novel and publish it under the pseudonym Mary McMullen. The 1951 novel, A Foreign Body received an Edgar Award for Best First Novel by an American Author. She then did not publish again until 1974, after which she wrote 20 novels before her death in 1986 in Philadelphia.
Hugh Lawrence Nelson
Nelson (1907-1983) was an American author. His series character was San Francisco Detective Lieutenant Steve Johnson. A later series was set in Denver, and featured Zebulion Buck and Jim Dunn, starting with Ring the Bell at Zero.
Judson Pentecost Philips (August 10, 1903 – March 7, 1989) was an American writer who wrote more than 100 mystery and detective novels under the pseudonyms Hugh Pentecost and Philip Owen, as well as under his own name. As Judson Philips, he also wrote numerous pulp sports novels in the 1930s.
Philips was born in Northfield, Massachusetts and traveled widely, before completing his education at Columbia University, where he graduated in 1925.
Philips started writing short stories for pulp fiction magazines in the 1920s and 1930s. He also wrote plays and a newspaper column. In 1950, he helped found the Sharon Playhouse, where he served as a producer and adviser. In the mid-1960s he hosted a program about events in Connecticut's "Northwest Corner" on radio station WTOR in Torrington, CT (610kh 1 kW day 500w night DA) which attracted a following. A number of his mystery novels were published under his own name as well as the Hugh Pentecost moniker, all of which benefited from strong characterization, fair play with the reader, and unstilted language to describe interesting situations.
In 1973, he received the Grand Master Award, the highest honor bestowed by the Mystery Writers of America. (Wikipedia)
see Hugh Pentecost
Richard Pitts Powell (November 28, 1908 – December 8, 1999) was an American novelist.
Born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Powell graduated from Princeton University in 1930 then worked at the Philadelphia Evening Public Ledger newspaper. After ten years, he joined the advertising agency N. W. Ayer & Son. Following service on Gen. Douglas MacArthur's staff during World War II, he returned to N.W. Ayer, where he rose to vice president of information services in 1952.
In the 1940s, Powell began writing fiction and in 1958 was able to devote himself to writing full-time. His first published books were Inner Sanctum Mysteries, published from 1943 to 1955. His major publishing debut, The Philadelphian (1956) spent more than six months on the bestseller list, and was filmed in 1959 as The Young Philadelphians.
Powell died on December 8, 1999 in Fort Myers, Florida.
Frederick Clyde Davis, born on 2 June 1902 in St. Joseph, Missouri and died on 28 November 1977 at St. Petersburg, Florida, is an author US several crime novels, sometimes signed pseudonyms Stephen Ransome and Murdo Coombs. He also wrote short stories of his name and under the pseudonyms Art Buckley and Hal Dunning. Under the signature Curtiss Steele, he wrote a series of novels and short stories by James Christopher, the Operator No. 5.
Barely twenty, he managed to pay for his studies in a college in Hanover, New Hampshire, selling his first short stories for pulp magazines. Starting in 1924, he decided to embrace a full time literary career.
A few years before the decline of the pulps, which accelerated during the war, Frederick C. Davis published his first detective novels. To sell his prolific output, Davis adopted in 1939 the pseudonym Stephen Ransome. Under this signature, he wrote thrillers and investigative stories rather dark and violent, which are among the best of his work. He also created the series of Lee Barcello, the refined but short-sighted police lieutenant Palmport, in a small coastal town in the Gulf of Mexico, and two very curious novels where the hero is named...Stephen Ransome, screenwriter and crime fiction author, involved in criminal cases. (Wikipedia)
Reilly was born Helen Kieran in April 25, 1891 in New York City, daughter of James Michael and Mary Katherine "Kate" (Donohue) Kieran. She married cartoonist, Paul Reilly. Two of her daughters, Ursula Curtiss (1923-1984) and Mary McMullen (1920-1986) were also mystery writers.
Reilly was a prolific author of mystery novels, whose career stretched from 1930 to 1962. All except her very earliest books feature New York City police Inspector Christopher McKee and were among the first American novels to stress police procedure. She also wrote under the pseudonym of Kieran Abbey.
Reilly died in 1962 in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Mary Roberts Rinehart
Rinehart was born Mary Ella Roberts in Allegheny City, Pennsylvania on August 12, 1876. She was often called the American Agatha Christie, although her first mystery novel was published 14 years before Christie's first novel in 1922.
Rinehart is considered the source of the phrase "The butler did it" from her novel The Door (1930), although the novel does not use the exact phrase. Rinehart is also considered to have invented the "Had-I-But-Known" school of mystery writing, with the publication of The Circular Staircase (1908). She also created a costumed super-criminal called "the Bat", cited by Bob Kane as one of the inspirations for his "Batman".
She died September 22, 1958 at age 82 at her apartment at 630 Park Avenue in New York City.
Arthur Henry Ward (15 February 1883 – 1 June 1959), better known as Sax Rohmer, was a prolific English novelist. He is best remembered for his series of novels featuring the master criminal Dr. Fu Manchu.
Born in Birmingham to a working-class Irish Catholic family, Arthur Ward had an entirely working class education and early career before beginning to write. He initially pursued a career as a civil servant before concentrating on writing full-time. He worked as a poet, songwriter and comedy sketch writer for Music hall performers before creating the Sax Rohmer persona and pursuing a career writing weird fiction.
Like his contemporaries Algernon Blackwood and Arthur Machen, Rohmer claimed membership to one of the factions of the qabbalistic Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn. Rohmer also claimed ties to the Rosicrucians, but the validity of his claims has been questioned. His physician and family friend, Dr. R. Watson Councell may have been his only legitimate connection to such organisations.
His first published work came in 1903, when the short story "The Mysterious Mummy" was sold to Pearson's Weekly. Rohmer's main literary influences seem to have been Edgar Allan Poe, Arthur Conan Doyle and M. P. Shiel.
He gradually transitioned from writing for music hall performers to concentrating on short stories and serials for magazine publication. In 1909 he married Rose Elizabeth Knox.
He published his first book Pause! anonymously in 1910.
After World War II, Rohmer and his wife moved to New York, only returning to London shortly before his death. He died in 1959, due to an outbreak of influenza.
His wife, Rose Elizabeth (Knox) Ward (1886–1979), published her own mystery novel, Bianca in Black, in 1958 under the pen name Elizabeth Sax Rohmer. Some editions of the book mistakenly credit her as Rohmer's daughter. She and Cay Van Ash (1918–1994), her husband's former assistant, wrote a biography of the author, Master of Villainy, published in 1972.
Roberts was a pseudonym of Robert Lee Martin (1908-1976). Between 1951 and 1965, Martin published fourteen novels as Robert Martin and eight as Lee Roberts.
Henry Wisdom "Tex" Roden was born July 17, 1895 in Dallas, Texas, son of Charles A. and Laura (Wisdom) Roden. Roden died May 10, 1963.
Roden graduated from Cornell University in 1918. He married Florence Finley in New York City on August 2, 1929.
Roden was Chairman of the G. Washington Coffee Refining Co.; Chairman of the Advertising Plans Board of The American Home Products Corp.; Member of the Board of Directors of the Association of National Advertisers and of the Grocery Manufacturers' Association, and a member of the Administrative Board of the Annual Advertising Awards.
Kelley Roos is the pseudonym of the married couple William Roos (1911-1987) and Audrey Kelley (1912-1982).
William and Audrey Kelley Roos meet in 1930 when they both took a course in diction in hopes of a career on stage. They played first on a showboat on the banks of the Ohio before landing small roles in New York.
During the Second World War, they adopted the pseudonym Kelley Roos to start writing crime fiction. Made Up to Kill (1940), the first novel in the series features the couple Jeff and Haila Troy.
In 1960, Audrey Roos received the Edgar Allan Poe Award for Best Novel in 1960 for a suitable adaptation of The House Burning (The Burning Court) by John Dickson Carr.
William Roos also authored a few plays and musicals, some mounted with varying degrees of success on Broadway.
Audrey Kelley Roos died of cancer on the island of Martha's Vineyard on December, 11 1982 . William Roos died on March 13, 1987 . (Wikipedia)
British author, her two series characters were Inspector Barry and Inspector Pettengill.
Rutledge (February 18, 1901- July 1976) was an American author of twelve works of crime fiction between 1944 and 1960 under her own name, two of them published only in England. She also had one mystery novel published as by Leigh Bryson, a Handi-Book paperback original in 1947. Rutledge was popular enough in the 1950s and 60s to have eight mystery novels serialized in the Saturday Evening Post, and one that appeared complete in one 1960 issue of Redbook.
Ione Sandberg Shriber
Ione Elaine Sandberg Shriber was born September 28, 1911 in Emeigh, Pennsylvania and died January 7, 1987 in Deerfield Beach, Florida.
She was the daughter of Axel L. and Esther (Johnson) Sandberg. She married Kenneth W. Shriber in Summit County, Ohio on June 19, 1930. He died in 1969. The Shribers lived in Akron, Ohio for many years. They had two children, a daughter, Stephanie and and son, Kenneth (Skip).
Shriber wrote many murder mysteries for New York publishers Farrar and Rinehart, and also had works published by Penguin Books, Bantam Books, the Detective Book Club and the Mystery Club Guild.
Some of her better-known works were A Body for Bill, Never Say Die, Head Over Heels in Murder, As Long As I Live, Ready or Not, Murder Well Done, The Dark Arbor and Pattern for Murder.
John Stephen Strange
Strange was a pseudonym of American author Dorothy Stockbridge Tillett (1896-1983).
She was married to William Smith Tillett, who discovered streptokinase. Her series characters were Barney Gantt, Lieutenant (later Captain) George Honegger and Van Dusen Ormsberry.
Thayer was a pseudonym of Emma Redington Lee. She was born in Troy, Pennsylvania on April 5, 1874, and was an artist and illustrator as well as a mystery writer. Her paintings were displayed at the Chicago World's Fair in 1893, and she worked for a while as an interior decorator for New York's elite, and with Henry W. Thayer, whom she would eventually marry in 1909, she co-founded Decorative Designers, a firm which (in the days before dust jackets) designed books and produced binding designs, interior illustrations and the like for various book publishers.
In 1932, the firm -- and the marriage -- ended, but the author would go by the name of Lee Thayer for the rest of her life, probably because it was the byline on her detective novels. Lee's detective Peter Clancy appeared in 60 novels starting in 1919.
Lee appeared on the May 11, 1958 episode of What's My Line. She died November 18, 1973.
Arthur Wilson "Bob" Tucker (November 23, 1914 – October 6, 2006) was an American theater technician who became well known as a writer of mystery, action adventure, and science fiction under the name Wilson Tucker.
Tucker was also a prominent member of science fiction fandom, who wrote extensively for fanzines under the name Bob Tucker, a family nickname bestowed in childhood (his own mis-pronunciation of the nickname "Bub"). He became a prominent analyst and critic of the field, as well as the coiner of such terms as "space opera".
Born in Deer Creek, Illinois, for most of his life Tucker made his home in Bloomington, Illinois. Tucker was married twice. In 1937, he wed Mary Joesting; they had a son and a daughter before the marriage dissolved in 1942. His second marriage, to Fern Delores Brooks in 1953, lasted 52 years, until her death in 2006; they had three sons.
Tucker's habit of using the names of friends in his fiction led to the literary term tuckerization.
Tyre (1912-1990), a native of Offerman, Georgia, was the author of six crime novels published in a twenty-year period, including Mouse in Eternity (1952), Hall of Death (1960), and Twice So Fair (1971), as well as more than forty short stories, largely published by Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine. Tyre was educated at Emory University in Atlanta and the Richmond School of Social Work in Virginia, and her experience as a social worker, librarian, and teacher particularly informed her fiction, which was deeply psychological and empathetic in nature. Tyre also wrote primarily about the American South, especially Georgia and Virginia, doing so years before the Southern regional mystery took off as a subgenre.
After 1971, though, Tyre stopped publishing novels and her short story output slowed down. Part of this was due to her taking on a staff job for an agency that gave financial assistance to poor children in third-world countries. A larger reason was ill health, including total deafness that struck her in the late 1970s. Tyre was also known to be a woman of great convictions and quirks: According to the Web site Recovering Nedra, devoted to returning Tyre to literary prominence, her friends recalled her “storing books in her oven, only eating lunch at restaurants that provided cloth napkins, traveling the world as a single woman, corresponding with all she met, and developing fondness for teddy bears.”
William Edward Vickers (1889 - 1965) was an English mystery writer better known under his pen name Roy Vickers, but used also the pseudonyms Roy C. Vickers, David Durham, Sefton Kyle, and John Spencer. He is now remembered mostly for his attribution to Scotland Yard of a Department of Dead Ends, specialized in solving old, sometimes long-forgotten cases, mostly by chance encounters of odd bits of strange and apparently disconnected evidence.
He was educated at Charterhouse School, and left Brasenose College, Oxford without a degree. For some time he studied law at the Middle Temple, but never practiced. He married Mary Van Rossem and they had one son. He worked as a journalist, as a court reporter and as a magazine editor; he also wrote a large number of nonfiction articles and sold hundreds of them to newspapers and magazines. Between November 1913 and February 1917, twenty short stories by Vickers were published in the Novel Magazine. About this time he published his first book, a biography of Field Marshal Frederick, Earl Roberts. In September 1934, The Rubber Trumpet, the first of thirty-seven stories featuring the fictitious Department of Dead Ends, appeared in Pearson's Magazine. In 1960 he edited the Crime Writers' Association's anthology of short stories Some Like Them Dead.
Wilde was born in New York City on March 1, 1887. He was an American author and playwright who wrote text books on the theater arts, novels and numerous short stories and one-act plays. Wilde graduated from Columbia in 1906. He sold his first story in 1912. He married Nadie Rogers Marckres in 1920 and served in the Navy in WWII. He died in New York on September 19, 1953.