began her writing career early in the twentieth century with half a dozen historical novels and romances and went on to achieve great popularity with between sixty and seventy thrillers, mysteries, and detective novels. She is a sharp observer of social comedy including relationships between the sexes, and her ability to evoke fear and suspense continued to develop throughout her career. She also wrote a book of verse for children and a couple of other poetry volumes. She is notable for inventing, before
's Miss Marple, an elderly female detective whose success is linked to the invisibility and apparent cosiness conferred by her sex and age.