In her youth during the Second World War she was educated largely at home, rather than at school. While she was evacuated to the West Country, Henry Christian Stephens, her father re-entered the Royal Navy to develop his Dome Trainer, one of the first inventions to cover anti aircraft gunnery training.
She started writing in 1949, following her marriage. Her pen name comes from Evelyn as a man's profile, as women were often not published during the years after the Second World War, and Saint Anthony, the Catholic patron of Lost Causes.
First writing short stories for periodicals, she gained fame and success with her well-researched historical novels, being especially noted for her original treatment of Anne Boleyn - a historical character dealt with by numerous other writers. Two of them became US Literary Guild Choices.
Her historical novels "Far Flies The Eagle" and "Valentina" were both set during Napoleon's invasion of Russia. The later novels had a theme of espionage.
Later, Anthony switched to writing contemporary thriller and spy novels, featuring strong female leads such as Davina Graham (Head of British spy services) with well-developed characterisation of protagonists and twist endings, which her readers came to expect.
Her 1971 The Tamarind Seed was adapted for film in 1974, starring Julie Andrews as Judith Farrow, a British Home Office functionary and Omar Sharif as Feodor, a Soviet air attaché- lovers involved in Cold War intrigue.
She adapted well to the end of the Cold War and continued writing thrillers set in the post-1990 reality.
Her books were translated into no fewer than nineteen languages and frequently compared to the writings of Ted Allbeury, Colin Forbes and Clare Francis.
She was married to Michael Ward-Thomas, former director of a mining company, who died in 2004. They had six children - four sons and two daughters. A daughter, Kitty, died in 1995. There are fourteen grandchildren spread around the globe, the latest in Australia in early 2008.
She lives in a sixteenth-century manor in Essex, Horham Hall. Earlier, they lived in Kildare in Ireland. Her hobbies are reported to be her dogs, socialising, gardening and listening to classical music.
Born and brought up before the wearing of fur became controversial, Evelyn Anthony is fond of wearing a huge red fox fur hat, a present which her husband obtained during a business trip in Russia.