I'm overjoyed to tell you that OUR HOUSE has been shortlisted for a British Book Award 2019 - Book of the Year in Crime & Thriller. I don't think I've had a book entered for an award before, let alone shortlisted, and I have to say I am LOVING the experience! A huge thank you to Simon & Schuster UK for propelling Bram and F's story to these dizzying heights!
It's my first time in Glasgow this weekend - I'll be appearing at the brilliant Aye Write festival, alongside Lisa Ballantyne. If you're local, I hope to meet you there! Meanwhile, check out the programme highlights...
US readers only: Berkley have a great giveaway starting today - you could win an early copy of THOSE PEOPLE plus a copy of OUR HOUSE. (For me, the pleasure is in seeing these two beauties side by side under the police tape...)
OK, I've yet to meet ANYONE who isn't a fan of spredges - sprayed edges - and following the lovely acid yellow ones for the OUR HOUSE, paperback, we are busy cooking up teal green ones for THOSE PEOPLE (I'm making it sound like we're in a Breaking Bad-style crystal meth lab here). Both are exclusive to Waterstones and you can now pre-order their special edition of THOSE PEOPLE!
I’m so excited to reveal the cover for the UK hardback of THOSE PEOPLE, out on June 27th. I love the echoes of OUR HOUSE and the promise of another dark, duplicitous mystery. Great work by designer Pip Watkins at Simon & Schuster UK!
Most exciting - we have our first sighting of THOSE PEOPLE advance copies/proofs in the wild and it's a Goodreads giveaway! (US readers only)
Great news for US readers - for a limited time, the OUR HOUSE ebook is just $1.99! Find it now on amazon.com and all other e-tailer sites!
Excitingly, OUR HOUSE has topped the UK Kindle chart - a truly surreal moment, given the hours I've spent over the years scrolling up and down, up and down, in a not-at-all obsessive manner. Thank you to the magnificent S&S Digital team and of course to all Kindlers who have bought and recommended the book - you have already made my year and it's only 17th January!
As I sign off from 2018 and stagger towards 2019 with a few festive pounds to lose, I want to send heartfelt thank yous to all who've bought, read, reviewed and recommended OUR HOUSE so far! It's been a joy to find it on so many prestigious Books of the Year lists, including the Washington Post, Publishers Weekly, the Guardian and the Daily Mail, but word of mouth in bookshops and libraries and offices and trains (if people still talk on trains) is just as valued. I really hope 2019 will bring me the opportunity to meet and thank lots of supporters in person. Meanwhile, I am about to sit down and begin the one after the one after OUR HOUSE... A very Happy New Year!
After Our House, my favourite of my own novels (that sounds very self-regarding, as if I re-read them in constant rotation, but let's go with it) is probably The Disappearance of Emily Marr. It’s the story of a scandal that erupts when a lonely young woman has an affair with a married neighbour and sets in motion a chain of tragic events she could never have anticipated. In despair, she leaves her life in London and heads to France – to atone, to grieve, to hide.
Having researched extensively the outcomes of missing persons enquiries, I decided that this was a novel that might bear an open ending. More often than not we don't get an answer in reality, so why must we have one in fiction? Boy, did I come to regret this! In my clever nod to authenticity, I forgot that readers like a proper ending. It doesn’t have to be a happy one (and rarely is with me), just the right one for the characters. Before long, I’d received thousands of emails asking me what happens next – and I duly supplied notes. Many readers enjoyed the game, but others most assuredly did not: ‘I am disgusted!!! 'I HATE this author!’
In cutting a long story short, I had, it seemed, Ruined Lives.
So now, with this reissued version, there is an ending. It was a joy to write, because, by now, I’ve needed the closure as much as the next person. There’s also a new cover, which I absolutely love. So, if you enjoyed Our House, let me introduce you to Emily Marr – and I promise you’ll find out exactly what becomes of her.