Mary Francis Shura's picture

Mary Francis Shura

(Mary Francis Shura Craig)
USA flag (1923 - 1991)

aka Mary Craig, Mary S Craig, Mary Shura Craig, Alexis Hill

Mary Francis Young was born on 23 February 1923 in Pratt, Kansas, the daughter of Jack Fant and Mary Francis (Milstead) Young. When she was very young, her family moved to the Pacific Northwest, where she raised. She studied at Maryville State College. On 24 October 1943, she married Daniel Charles Shura, who died in 1959. They had two children: Marianne Francis Shura (Spraguc) and Daniel Charles Shura. On 8 December 1961, she married Raymond C. Craig, they had a daughter Alice Barrett Craig (Stout), before their divorce.

Since 1960, she wrote over 50 books of various genres: children's adventures and teen-romances as Mary Francis Shura, M. F. Craig, and Meredith Hill; gothic novels as Mary Craig; romance novels as Alexis Hill, Mary Shura Craig and Mary S. Craig; and suspense novels as M. S. Craig.

Her children's novel "The Search for Grissi" received the Carl Sandburg Literary Arts Award in 1985, and she also was nominated to the Young Hoosier Book Award. In 1990, she was elected president of the Mystery Writers of America.

She lived in Hinsdale, Illinois, where her apartment burned on 13 December 1990. At 67, she died of injuries suffered in the fire on 12 January 1991 in Loyola University Medical Burn Center in Maywood.

Genres: Young Adult Fiction, Young Adult Romance
Duval (as by Alexis Hill)
   1. Passion's Slave (1979)
   2. Untamed Heart (1980)
   Simple Spigott (1960)
   The Garret of Greta McGraw (1961)
   The Nearsighted Knight (1964)
   Runaway Home (1965)
   A Tale of Middle Length (1966)
   Backwards for Luck (1967)
   The Valley of the Frost Giants (1971)
   The Shop on Threnody Street (1972)
   Topcat of Tam (1972)
   The Seven Stone (1972)
   A Candle For The Dragon (1973) (as by Mary Craig)
   Ten Thousand Several Doors (1973) (as by Mary Craig)
     aka Mistress Of Lost River
   The Cranes Of Ibycus (1974) (as by Mary Craig)
     aka Shadows Of The Past
   The Riddle of Raven's Gulch (1975)
   Maggie in the Middle (1976)
   The Season of Silence (1976)
   Were He A Stranger (1978) (as by Mary Craig)
   The Gray Ghosts of Taylor Ridge (1978)
   Were He a Stranger (1978)
   Mister Wolf and Me (1979)
   My Friend Natalie (1979)
     aka The Barkley Street Six-pack
   Chester (1980)
   Happles and Cinnamunger (1981)
   Lyon's Pride (1983) (as by Mary Shura Craig)
   Eleanor (1983)
   Pirate's Landing (1983) (as by Mary Shura Craig)
   The Riddle of Raven Hollow (1983)
   Jefferson (1984)
   Pornada (1985)
   The Search for Grissi (1985)
   Fortune's Destiny (1986) (as by Mary Shura Craig)
   The Josie Gambit (1986)
   Dark Paradise (1986) (as by Mary S Craig)
   Don't Call Me Toad! (1987)
   The Sunday Doll (1988)
   The Mystery at Wolf River (1989)
   Kate's Book (1989)
   Kate's House (1990)
   Polly Panic (1990)
   Shoefull of Shamrock (1991)
   Our Teacher Is Missing (1992)
   Winter Dreams, Christmas Love (1992)
   Some Kind of Friend (1992)
   Summer Dreams, Winter Love (1993)
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Picture Books
Series contributed to
   6. Jessica (1984)
   9. Marilee (1985)
   24. Gabrielle (1987)
   29. Diana (1988)
   32. Darcy (1989)
Non fiction