D. A. Bartley is a member of Daughters of Utah Pioneers. She traces her family history back to the earliest days of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. She spent much of her childhood in Utah, but her parents were incurable travelers.
She was born in Scotland and lived in Germany, France, and Russia. After studying international relations, politics and law, D. A. worked both as an attorney and an academic in Manhattan. In the end, though, she could not escape her life-long love of mysteries. She lives in New York City with her family.