Francine Mathews

Francine Mathews is an American writer of Mystery and Spy Fiction born in 1963


Francine Mathews was the last of six girls. Born in Birmingham, New York, Francine’s father (a retired Air Force General) and mother (a beautiful dancer) often took their large family to Cape Cod for the summer.

Growing up in Washington, DC, Francine went to a centuries old catholic school called Georgetown Visitation Preparatory which shared a wall with Georgetown University. She would lose her father in her freshman year.

Princeton was her college of choice, which she attended in 1981. The college shaped and transformed Francine in ways she couldn’t have expected. She strived to enjoy as much of her time at Princeton as possible, this including joining the Fencing team.

Francine Mathews always had a knack for history, majoring in European History while at Princeton; her particular area of interest was Napoleonic France, and she was adept enough at her studies that she eventually won the Arthur W. Mellon Foundation Fellowship.

Considering this accolade, you would expect history to be the primary driving factor of her studies and the career she pursued afterward; however, the one thing Francine Mathews remembers most vividly from her time in Princeton was the “Literature of Fact” course that was taught by John McPhee (Pulitzer Prize Winning author and New Yorker Writer).

No other individual or factor had as stark an impact on Francine as John McPhee’s teachings; they influenced every aspect of her life, especially her writing approach and abilities, and she has never been able to fully express in words what the course meant to her.

Books in order of publication:

Caroline Carmichael Books

The Cutout(2001) 

A Merry Folger Nantucket Mystery Books

Death in the Off-Season(1994) 
Death in Rough Water(1995) 
Death in a Mood Indigo(1997) 
Death in a Cold Hard Light(1998) 
Death on Nantucket(2017) 
“Death on Tuckernuck”(2020) 

Standalone Novels

The Secret Agent(2002) 
As You Wish(2004) 
Time Will Tell(2005) 
The Alibi Club(2006) 
Jack 1939(2012) 
Too Bad to Die(2015) 


The Sunken Sailor(2004)
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