Zelda Popkin

Zelda Popkin (5 July 1898 – 25 May 1983, née Feinberg) was an American author of novels and mystery stories. She created Mary Carner, one of the first professional female private detectives in fiction. Carner was a store detective who appeared in five novels. Connections have been made with Angela Lansbury’s character in the television series Murder, She WroteJessica Fletcher.[citation needed]

Popkin's most successful book was The Journey Home, published in 1945, which sold nearly a million copies.[citation needed] Small Victory, published in 1947, was one of the first American novels with a Holocaust theme, and Quiet Street (1951) was the first American novel about the creation of the state of Israel.[citation needed]

She also wrote an autobiography, Open Every Door (1956), chronicling her childhood, life with her husband Louis Popkins, and life after his death.[citation needed] Herman Had Two Daughters (1968), a novel about two young Jewish women growing up in a small Pennsylvania town, is also largely autobiographical.[citation needed]

Zelda Popkin was married to Louis Popkin, and together they ran a small public relations firm until his death. They had two children, Roy and Richard.


Mary Carner Crime SeriesEdit

  • Death Wears a White Gardenia (1938)
  • Time Off for Murder (1940)
  • Murder in the Mist (1940)
  • Dead Man's Gift (1941)
  • No Crime for a Lady (1942)


  • So Much Blood (1944)
  • Journey Home (1945)
  • Small Victory (1947)
  • Walk Through the Valley (1949)
  • Quiet Street (1951)
  • Open Every Door (1956)
  • Herman Had Two Daughters (1968)
  • A Death of Innocence (1971)
  • Dear Once (1975)

Non fiction autobiographyEdit

  • Open Every Door (1956)



  1. ^ "Past Winners". Jewish Book Council. Retrieved 2020-01-19.

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