Books


I've written three novels, all published by Simon & Schuster. The third, What She Lost is out now. I'm currently working on the fourth. 

What She Lost was a Good Housekeeping recommended read in the April issue. Here are a few of the comments from the GH reader panel:

“Beautiful story of a Mum and daughter finally growing close after years of emotional distancing. Poignant to say the least.”


“A thought provoking and reflective book, echoing my mother's slow decline into dementia. I loved the references to bygone products which evoked a sensory overload at times. Well written and researched. The main characters were well drawn and elicited sympathy for the dilemmas in which they found themselves.”

"An emotional read that draws you in and holds your attention the whole way through. I thoroughly enjoyed it and will look out for books from the same author again.” 






Here's the blurb:
Eleanor and her mother Marjorie have always had a difficult relationship and although they’ve tried, they have somehow just failed to connect
    Now Marjorie has Alzheimer’s, and as her memory fades, her grip on what she has kept hidden begins to loosen. When she calls her daughter to say, ‘There’s something I have to tell you’, Eleanor hopes this will be the moment she learns the truth about the terrible secret that has cast a shadow over both their lives. 
    But Marjorie’s memory is failing fast and she can’t recall what she wanted to say. Eleanor knows time is running out, and as she tries to gently uncover the truth before it becomes lost inside her mother’s mind forever, she begins to discover what really happened when she was a child – and why…



The Secrets We Left Behind, was published in May 2014 by Simon & Schuster


She has built the perfect life: a husband who adores her, a daughter she is fiercely proud of and a home with warmth and love at its heart. But things were not always so good, and in order to get where she is today she has done things she can never admit. 



Then one winter's evening a phone call comes out of the blue. It is a voice from long ago, from a past she has tried so hard to hide. Scott knows who she really is and what she has done. But now he is dying and he gives her an ultimatum: either she tells the truth, or he will.


And so we are taken back to that long, hot summer of 1976, to a house by the sea, where her story begins and where the truth will be revealed... .




Press & reviews:

The Secrets We Left Behind featured in this Daily Express's list of Best Women's Fiction

And here are just a few of the reviews:
http://www.seeingspots.co.uk/2014/10/book-review-secrets-we-left-behind.html
http://nblo.gs/10BbG8
http://www.goodreads.com/review/show/1036096453?book_show_action=true&page=1
http://www.goodreads.com/review/show/928500429?book_show_action=true&page=1
http://www.goodreads.com/review/show/901644883?book_show_action=true&page=1
http://www.goodreads.com/review/show/1043403546?book_show_action=true&page=1
http://www.goodreads.com/review/show/993288823?book_show_action=true&page=1

My debut novel, The Things We Never Said, was published by Simon & Schuster in May 2013

Click image to purchase.
In 1964, Maggie wakes to find herself in a mental asylum, with no idea who she is or how she got there. All she knows is that she must use all her strength in order to survive. Remnants of memories swirl in her mind – a familiar song, a storm, a moment of violence. Slowly, she begins to piece together the past and the events which brought her to this point.

In the present day, Jonathan is grieving after the loss of his father. A cold, distant man, he was not easy to love, but at least while he lived there was hope for reconciliation. Then a detective turns up on Jonathan’s doorstep to question him about crimes he believes Jonathan’s father may have committed long ago...

As the two stories interweave, the devastating truth long kept hidden must emerge, and both Maggie and Jonathan are forced to come to terms with the consequences of the shocking and tragic events of over forty years ago.

Read the prologue here

Praise for The Things We Never Said
‘Passionate, intriguing and beautifully written, The Things We Never Said deserves to stand on the shelf next to Maggie O’Farrell’s books.  A powerful and talented new voice’
Rachel Hore, bestselling author of A Gathering Storm and A Place of Secrets

‘This is a staggeringly accomplished first novel, perfectly paced.  It sweeps you up from the very first page and doesn’t let you go until the end. The hauntingly nostalgic tale of the trauma of an unwanted pregnancy in the 60s, it has echoes of Lynn Reid Banks and Margaret Forster.  You could almost smell the boarding house and feel the cold of an unforgiving winter as aspiring actress Maggie faces up to some brutal choices that will affect her for the rest of her life.The ensuing trauma is entwined with a very modern tale of marriage, impending fatherhood and the perils of the workplace in twenty-first-century Britain.  The two stories dovetail to perfection. It’s both deeply moving and uplifting – an emotional rollercoaster. If you love Maggie O’Farrell, you will love this’
Veronica Henry, bestselling author of The Long Weekend

‘A brave and moving story about how much can be lost and what happens next. A compelling and impressive debut’
Alison Moore, author of the Booker-shortlisted The Lighthouse

‘Two intertwined stories explore a past filled with terror and grief, and a heart-breaking present, in writing as smooth and bittersweet as fine dark chocolate’
Jane Rogers, author of the Booker-longlisted The Testament of Jessie Lamb

‘Tightly-woven and tender, The Things We Never Said is a beautifully crafted story that explores harsh family secrets with effortless clarity. A wonderful debut’
Isabel Ashdown, award-winning author of Glasshopper

‘I was swept along by Elliot Wright’s assured storytelling’
Katie Ward, author of Girl, Reading

‘Compelling and deeply moving … this is superb storytelling which transports the reader with ease between past and present, across a gulf of fifty years, while gradually revealing the connection between the two. I couldn’t put it down’
 Jane Rusbridge, author of The Devil’s Music

Short stories:
Day Tripper – adapted for radio and broadcast on BBC Radio 4 on 31st March 2009. Previously awarded 3rd Prize in the 2003 Legend Writing Award and published in the Strandline anthology. Judges’ comment: “Deftly characterised and with a strong sense of place. An affecting story.”

A Quiet Return Writers’ Forum - 2006 (short list) Judges’ comment: “A gentle story of physical love in old age. Handled with warmth and credibility, and avoids sentimentality.”
Awarded a Certificate of Merit at the Mere Literary Festival competition in 2004

When the Bough Breaks Asham Award - 2005 (short list) Judges’ comment: “Terrifying to read. The author uses crows as a metaphor for darkness and malevolence...the descent into total breakdown is very clearly and tragically observed.”

Mother’s Boy Writers’ Forum - 2005 3rd Prize Published in Writers’ Forum Magazine, October 2005

BABE Arvon Friends Writing competition - 2004 1st prize. Published in the Arvon Newsletter, October 2004.

Non-fiction books:
I've written several non-fiction books on health-related topics:

Overcoming Emotional Abuse (Sheldon Press) is aimed primarily at women who are suffering emotional abuse by a partner, although the information is also relevant to men who have abusive male or female partners.

When Someone you Love has Dementia (Sheldon Press) won a 'Highly Commended' in the BMA book awards 2010 and is aimed at friends, relatives and carers of people with Alzheimer's and other types of dementia.

Coping with Type 2 Diabetes (Sheldon Press) is aimed at those who have been recently diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes and those who may be at risk of developing the condition. The book may also be of use to families and carers.

Coping with Epilepsy in Children and Young People (Sheldon Press) is aimed primarily at parents and carers, but also has chapters that may be of interest to young people up to the age of 20.

Overcoming Insomnia (Sheldon Press) is aimed primarily at adult insomnia sufferers and may also be of use to their partners or families.


I've also written four books for 12-16-year-olds as part of the Hodder 'Health Issues series: Heroin, Puberty, Amphetamines, and Epilepsy.