An American author and music critic, she is most famous for The Valley of Decision, a literary saga that describes the economic panic of 1873 and the rise of American industry.
She worked as an advertising copywriter and later joined the staff of the New Yorker as an editor.
Two of her novels-- East Side, West Side and The Valley of Decision-- were made into films.
With her first husband, Frank D. Clarke, she had a daughter named Patricia. She later married editor Russell Davenport.
She was the first American to write a biography of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.