British writer well known for her books describing local history, culture, and everyday life of countries she visited. Many of her trips were to remote places where no woman had ever traveled. Her travels in Iran were the inspiration for her first book, The Valley of the Assassins (1934). Stark traveled extensively throughout the Middle East, Turkey, Greece, Italy, and Asia, and learned to speak Arabic, Iranian, and Turkish (she already spoke French, German, and Italian). She wrote 24 books, several volumes of collected letters, and four volumes of memoirs. Stark died at the age of 100 at her home in Italy.