Eleanor Alice Burford (September 1, 1906 - January 8, 1993), Mrs. George Percival Hibbert, was a British author of about 200 historical novels, most of them under the pen names Jean Plaidy, Philippa Carr, and Victoria Holt She chose to use various names because of the differences in subject matter. Many of her readers under one penname never suspected her other identities.
As Jean Plaidy
Plaidy was probably the most popular British historical novelist of the 20th century. She wrote over eighty historical novels, which nowadays tend to be looked down on by "serious" enthusiasts of history, but which served the useful purpose of bringing historical figures and events to a wider readership.
As Philippa Carr
Less well known than her other pen-names, the name of Philippa Carr nevertheless had its own faithful following.
The novels written as Philippa Carr are family sagas.
As Victoria Holt
Her work as Holt differed significantly from the more numerous novels written under the better-known name of Jean Plaidy, but was equally popular with a different fan base.
Holt's novels, such as Mistress of Mellyn (1960), were not "straight" historical novels, despite having a historical setting, but were pseudo-gothic romances with an element of suspense.