Tags: ida | pollock | dies | romance | novelist

Ida Pollock Dies: Romance Novelist, Author of 120 Books Was 105

Monday, 09 Dec 2013 12:17 PM

By Michael Mullins

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Ida Pollock, considered the world's oldest romantic novelist at age 105 who has written more than 120 books over the course of her career, has died.

Pollack's daughter Rosemary said her mother died Dec. 3 at a nursing home near her house in Lanreath, southwest England, the Associated Press reported.

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The English-born Pollock wrote under 12 pen names during a writing career that spanned nearly nine decades. She was best known for the romance novels "White Heat," "The Devil's Daughter," "The Sweet Surrender," and "The Garden of Don Jose."

Though the subject matter of her books often revolved around passion-fueled encounters between handsome older men and impecunious young women from around the world, Pollock did not begin her writing career as a romantic novelist, according to her daughter Rosemary, who is 70 years old.

"I think she would have liked to be a thriller writer. She enjoyed reading thrillers, more than romantic fiction," Rosemary said. "She told me about one or two rather grim stories she wrote when she a very young — one was about a Japanese woman in a garden who strangled her lover with her hair, (but) my grandmother was always saying, `Why don't you write something pretty? That's the way to get on.'

"Then she thought, love stories — Charlotte Bronte, Jane Austen — she could go with that," Rosemary said.

When asked about her work, the prolific writer said her books were "full of hope and romance rather than sex," the AP reported. Each of her works contained one crucial element: "a happy ending," which she said was "an absolute must."

In a 2013 interview, Pollock claimed that as a younger woman she was able to write a novel in six weeks, Britain's Telegraph reported.

"A romance is never just a romance, there's adventure, mystery and movement," Pollock said in the interview. "You need a grand, dramatic setting — the Swiss Alps were always a personal favorite of mine — and a chance meeting, on a train, a cruise, or perhaps the hero and heroine find themselves shipwrecked on a desert island."

"The men are normally rich, well-to-do, but never vulgar with their money. Young men lack the maturity to take control so an older man is essential to provide the reassurance the heroine needs," Pollock added.

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