Patricia Wentworth

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Patricia Wentworth
Born Dora Amy Elles
(1878-11-10)November 10, 1878
Mussoorie, Uttarakhand, India
Died January 28, 1961(1961-01-28) (aged 82)
Pen name Patricia Wentworth
Occupation Novelist
Genres Crime
Notable award(s) Melrose
1910 A Marriage Under The Terror
Spouse(s) George F. Dillon
George Oliver Turnbull (1920)

Patricia Wentworth (born Dora Amy Elles; November 10, 1878 - January 28, 1961) was a British crime fiction writer.

She was born in Mussoorie, Uttarakhand, India (then the British Raj). She was educated privately and at Blackheath High School in London. After the death of her first husband, George F. Dillon, in 1906, she settled in Camberley, Surrey. She married George Oliver Turnbull in 1920 and they had one daughter.

She wrote a series of 32 crime novels (classic-style whodunits) many featuring Miss Silver, the first of which was published in 1928, and the last of which was published in the year of her death. Miss Silver is sometimes compared to Jane Marple, the elderly detective created by Agatha Christie. Miss Silver is a retired governess who becomes a private detective. She works closely with Scotland Yard, especially Inspector Frank Abbott. She is fond of quoting the poet Tennyson. "Miss Silver is well known in the better circles of society, and she finds entree to the troubled households of the upper classes with little difficulty. In most of Miss Silver's cases there is a young couple whose romance seems ill fated because of the murder to be solved, but in Miss Silver's competent hands the case is solved, the young couple are exonerated, and all is right in this very traditional world."[1] Wentworth also wrote 34 books outside of that series.

She won the Melrose prize in 1910 for her first novel A Marriage Under The Terror, set in the French Revolution.[2]


  1. ^ Swanson, Jean and Dean James, Killer Books: A Reader's Guide to Exploring the Popular World of Mystery and Suspense. Berkley, New York: 1998.
  2. ^ James Milne, "Best Novel Competition Won by a Woman With Her First Book: Some Inferences Drawn", New York Times, April 9, 1910 [1]

External links[edit]

  • [2] Books by Wentworth
  • [3] Stories by Wentworth