V C Andrews Biography & Facts
Cleo Virginia Andrews (June 6, 1923 – December 19, 1986), better known as V. C. Andrews or Virginia C. Andrews, was an American novelist.
Andrews's novels combine Gothic horror and family saga, revolving around family secrets and forbidden love (frequently involving themes of horrific events, and sometimes including a rags-to-riches story). Her best-known novel is the bestseller Flowers in the Attic (1979), a tale of four children smuggled into the attic of their wealthy estranged pious grandmother, and held prisoner there by their mother.
Her novels were successful enough that following Andrews's death, her estate hired a ghost writer, Andrew Neiderman, to continue to write novels to be published under her name. In assessing a deficiency in her estate tax returns, the Internal Revenue Service argued (successfully) that Virginia Andrews's name was a valuable commercial asset, the value of which should be included in her gross estate.Her novels have been translated into Czech, French, Italian, German, Spanish, Dutch, Japanese, Korean, Turkish, Greek, Finnish, Hungarian, Swedish, Polish, Portuguese, Lithuanian, Chinese, Russian and Hebrew.
Andrews was born in Portsmouth, Virginia, the youngest child and only daughter of Lillian Lilnora (Parker), a telephone operator, and William Henry Andrews, a tool-and-die maker. She had two older brothers, William Jr. and Eugene. Andrews grew up attending Southern Baptist and Methodist churches. As a teenager, Andrews suffered a fall from a school stairwell, resulting in severe back injuries. The subsequent surgery to correct these injuries resulted in Andrews' suffering from crippling arthritis that required her to use crutches and a wheelchair for much of her life. However, having always shown promise as an artist, she was able to complete a four-year correspondence course from her home and soon became a successful commercial artist, illustrator, and portrait painter, using her art commissions to support the family after her father's death in 1957.Later in life, Andrews turned to writing. Her first novel, titled Gods of Green Mountain, was a science fiction effort that remained unpublished during her lifetime but was released as an e-book in 2004. In 1975, Andrews completed a manuscript for a novel she called Flowers in the Attic. "I wrote it in two weeks," Andrews said. The novel was returned with the suggestion that she "spice up" and expand the story. In later interviews, Andrews claims to have made the necessary revisions in a single night. The novel, published in 1979, was an instant popular success, reaching the top of the bestseller lists in only two weeks. Every year thereafter until her death, Andrews published a new novel, each publication earning Andrews larger advances and a growing popular readership.
"I think I tell a whopping good story. And I don't drift away from it a great deal into descriptive material," she stated in Faces of Fear in 1985. "When I read, if a book doesn't hold my interest in what's going to happen next, I put it down and don't finish it. So I'm not going to let anybody put one of my books down and not finish it. My stuff is a very fast read." In an interview for Twilight Magazine in 1983, Andrews was questioned about the critics' response to her work. She answered, "I don't care what the critics say. I used to, until I found out that most critics are would-be writers who are just jealous because I'm getting published and they aren't. I also don't think that anybody cares about what they say. Nor should they care."Andrews died of breast cancer on December 19, 1986, in Virginia Beach, Virginia. After her death, her family hired a ghostwriter, Andrew Neiderman, to finish the manuscripts she had started. He would complete the next two novels, Garden of Shadows and Fallen Hearts, and they were published soon after. These two novels are considered the last to bear the "V. C. Andrews" name and to be almost completely written by Andrews herself.
By V. C. Andrews and Andrew Neiderman
The Dollanganger Family Series
Andrews' first series of novels was published between 1979 and 1987.
Flowers in the Attic and Petals on the Wind focus on the four Dollanganger siblings and the events that shattered their perfect life after a car accident kills their father and their eventual imprisonment in their grandparent’s attic as their mother tries to win back the love of her dying estranged father who must not know of the existence of her four children. Flowers in the Attic tells of their incarceration at Foxworth Hall, the death of one child, and subsequent escape of the other three, with Petals on the Wind picking up directly after telling the story of life outside the attic walls and Cathy's eventual revenge on the mother that locked them away. The story then continues in If There Be Thorns, which follows Cathy's sons, Jory and Bart, and the mysterious new neighbor who befriends Bart, gradually turning him against his parents; to the eventual reconstruction of Foxworth Hall (which had previously burnt down in Petals) in Seeds of Yesterday. Garden of Shadows, a prequel, tells the grandparents' story and how the children's parents became involved with each other, leading to the events of the first novel.
Flowers in the Attic (1979)
Petals on the Wind (1980)
If There Be Thorns (1981)
Seeds of Yesterday (1984)
Garden of Shadows (1987) (by V. C. Andrews and Andrew Neiderman)The Audrina Series
Initially a stand-alone novel published during Andrews' lifetime, the story takes place in the Mid-Atlantic United States during the 1960s and 1970s. The story features diverse subjects, such as brittle bone disease, rape, posttraumatic stress disorder, and diabetes, in the haunting setting of a Victorian-era mansion near the fictitious River Lyle. A sequel was published 34 years later, to tie in with the Lifetime adaption of My Sweet Audrina, by Andrew Neiderman.
My Sweet Audrina (1982) by Virginia Andrews
Whitefern (2016) by (Neiderman)The Casteel Family Series
Published between 1985 and 1990, the five novels of the Casteel series make up the last series started by Andrews before her death. This series traces the lives of a troubled West Virginia family, originally from the viewpoint of Heaven, a young impoverished girl whose mother died during childbirth and who has a love/hate relationship with her alcoholic father who eventually sells Heaven and her siblings to make some money. Eventually Heaven leaves to go live with her maternal grandfather at Farthinggale Manor where she discovers the secrets of her mother and who her actual father is. Later novels focus on Heaven's daughter, Annie, with the fifth and final novel centering on Leigh, Heaven's mother.
Dark Angel (1986)
Fallen Hearts (1988) (started by Andrews, finished by Neiderman)
Gates of Paradise (1989) (Neiderman)
Web of Dreams (1990) (Neiderman)By Andrew Neiderman
The Cutler Family Series
This series, the first written enti.... Discover the V C Andrews popular books. Find the top 100 most popular V C Andrews books.