Susan Barrie was one of the many pen names of Ida Pollock, née Crowe, who was born in Lewisham in southeast London, England. Her parents’ marriage fell apart shortly after she was born, and her mother worked as a housekeeper for relatives. Ida began writing at a young age and at 14, published her first novella, a thriller called The Towers of Ravenshaunt. By age 20, she had published several stories in major magazines and in book form. She became a full-time writer in the 1930s. Over the nine decades of her career, she wrote prolifically and sold millions of copies of romance novels with titles such as Indian Love (1935), The Sweet Surrender (1959) and Master of Melincourt (1966). Being in print with many titles of different genres at different publishers, she used multiple pseudonyms; these included Joan M. Allen, Susan Barrie, Pamela Kent, Averil Ives, Anita Charles, Barbara Rowan, Jane Beaufort, Rose Burghley, Mary Whistler and Marguerite Bell. As a young woman, she had a long-term affair with Lt-Col. Hugh Pollock, a writer and editor who was 20 years her senior and married to Enid Blyton. They were finally married in 1943 and had a daughter the following year, Rosemary Pollock, who also became a romance writer. They lived in Ireland, France, Italy, Malta and Switzerland. In 1964, she published her first historical novel, The Gentle Masquerade, under her married name Ida Pollock. She also wrote suspense novels and an autobiography, Starlight (2009). In 1960, she was a founding member of the Romantic Novelists' Association. In her 90s, she became a painter and built scale miniatures of Georgian and Tudor buildings.