Zelda Feinberg was born in Brooklyn, New York, and attended Columbia University and NYU School of Law. At age 17, she became the first woman general assignment reporter for the Wilkes-Barre Times Leader. In 1919, she married Louis Popkin and had two children. The couple worked together in a small public relations firm until his death in 1943. Zelda Popkin became a mystery writer and created Mary Carner, one of the first professional female private eyes in American fiction. Mary Carner was quite liberated for her day -- she frequently solved her cases while her husband stayed home to babysit their daughter. Zelda Popkin's Small Victory, for which she received the National Jewish Book Award in 1947, was one of the earliest U.S. novels to focus on the Holocaust. She also wrote Quiet Street (1951), the first novel in English about the 1948 struggle to establish the State of Israel. Her autobiogaphy, Open Every Door (1956), recounted her childhood in small towns in New Jersey and eastern Pennsylvania.