Edgbaston, Birmingham, United Kingdom: Dame Barbara Cartland 9 July 1901 – 21 May 2000 born Mary Barbara Hamilton Cartland was an English author of romance novels, one of the best-selling authors as well as one of the most prolific and commercially successful worldwide of the twentieth century. Her 723 novels were translated into 38 languages and she continues to be referenced in the Guinness World Records for the most novels published in a single year in 1976. As Barbara Cartland she is known for her numerous romantic novels but she also wrote under her married name of Barbara Mc Corquodale and briefly under the pseudonym of Marcus Belfry. She wrote more than 700 books as well as plays, music, verse, drama, magazine articles and operetta, and was a prominent philanthropist. She reportedly sold more than 750 million copies. Other sources estimate her book sales at more than two billion copies.She specialised in 19th-century Victorian era pure romance. Her novels all featured portrait-style artwork, particularly the cover art, usually designed by Frances Marshall.
As head of Cartland Promotions, she also became one of London’s most prominent society figures, of the latter always presenting herself in pink gown and plumed hat she was one of Britain’s most popular media personalities, right up until her death in 2000.