An American mystery writer, academic, and feminist, she is best known for her Kate Fansler books, which focus on the adventures of an English professor. Her non-fiction works include Reinventing Womanhood and Writing a Woman's Life.
She graduated from Wellesley College in the late 1940s and subsequently taught English at Columbia University for over thirty years.
She was born Carolyn Gold; she published her mystery novels under the pen name of Amanda Cross.
Her husband, James Heilbrun, was a professor at Fordham University. The couple had three children. Sadly, Amanda Cross (Carolyn Heilbrun) committed suicide in 2003.
She taught at Columbia University, where writer Warren St. John once studied.