Ruth Barbara Rendell, Baroness Rendell of Babergh, who also writes under the pseudonym Barbara Vine, (born February 17, 1930), is a British best-selling mystery and psychological crime writer, often called the Queen of Crime.
Born in London, the daughter of teachers, Ruth (Barbara), n�e Grasemann, worked as a journalist for Essex newspapers before creating her character Chief Inspector Reginald Wexford, the protagonist of her first police procedural From Doon With Death (1964). Wexford's latest case is The Babes in the Wood (2002).
Parallel to her Wexford procedurals are Rendell's psychological crime novels wherein she explores themes such as sexual obsession, the effects of misperceived communication, chance and the humanness of criminals, in books such as Judgment in Stone, Live Flesh, Talking to Strange Men, The Killing Doll, Going Wrong, and Adam and Eve and Pinch Me.
Rendell created a third strand of writing with the publication of A Dark Adapted Eye under her pseudonym Barbara Vine in 1986. Books such as