Emma Lathen is the pen name of two American businesswomen: an attorney Mary Jane Latsis (July 12, 1927 -October 29, 1997) and an economic analyst Martha Henissart (b. 1929),who received her B.A. in physics from Mount Holyoke College in 1950.
Henissart and Latsis met as graduate students at Harvard. As Lathen, they wrote numerous mystery novels starring John Putnam Thatcher, a Wall Street banker. The pseudonym is constructed from two authors' names "M" of Mary and "Ma" of Martha, and "Lat" of Latsis and "Hen" of Henissart. They also wrote under the pseudonym R. B. Dominic; all the Dominic stories feature Congressman Benton Safford as the sleuth.
Each book features events in a specific industry or activity with which Thatcher or Safford become involved in the course of their work. The books often refer to specific public events in their plotting; for example, "When in Greece" is mostly set in that country during the Colonels' Revolution, and "Going for Gold" involves the Winter Olympics at Lake Placid. Others relate to more general social and other trends, such as "Death Shall Overcome" which links with the Civil Rights Movement.