Frost Hollow Hall (Faber- Oct 2013)
‘The gates to Frost Hollow Hall loomed before us. They were great tall things, the ironwork all twisted leaves and queer-looking flowers. And they were very definitely shut.’
It’s winter, 1881. When Tilly receives a dare to go ice-skating up at Frost Hollow Hall, she can’t refuse. No one goes near the place these days. Ten years ago the young heir, Kit Barrington, drowned in the lake. His death is still shrouded in mystery.
But the dare goes horribly wrong. The ice breaks and Tilly almost drowns. At the point of death, a beautiful figure appears in the water and saves her life. Tilly soon realises her rescuer is Kit Barrington’s ghost. His spirit cannot rest in peace until the truth about his death is revealed. Now he needs Tilly to help him.
In order to discover all she can, Tilly gets work as a maid at Frost Hollow Hall. But the place makes her flesh crawl. It’s all about the dead here, she’s told, and in the heart of the house she soon discovers all manner of dark secrets . . .
Frost Hollow Hall is a thrilling historical fiction debut. Told in Tilly’s unique voice, it is a tale of love and loss, and how forgiveness is the key to recovery.
Awards: North East Book Award Winner 2013, Hillingdon Book of the Year 2014.
Longlists/shortlists/nominations: Branford Boase Award Longlist 2014, Waterstones Book Prize Longlist 2014. Shortlisted for St Helen’s Libraries BASH Awards 2014. Red House Books Pick of the Year, Lovereading4kids‘ Debuts of the Month (October) and a Book of The Year 2013. And Telegraph’s Top 100 Books For Christmas 2013, Netgallery’s Top Ten Books of 2013.
The Girl Who Walked On Air (Faber- 7 August 2014)
‘I wasn’t a proper orphan because my mam wasn’t dead. She didn’t love me either. She left me at the circus, the way most people forget an umbrella.’
One foggy night, a baby girl is abandoned outside Chipchase’s Travelling Circus. She’s taken in and named Louie. Thirteen years later, her job is to sell tickets for the show. No one suspects she’s got a talent for anything else. But Louie’s secret hero is tightrope walker Charles Blondin. She’s hungry to perform on the high wire, and when her guardian Jasper has a terrible accident, she pleads for a chance to take his place in the ring.
Circus owner Mr Chipchase refuses point blank. Yet when a strange man in a very tall top hat turns up, Mr Chipchase suddenly changes his mind. The man comes with an offer, and secrets of his own. A thrilling chain of events lead Louie to the other side of the world. There, she attempts the most daring tightrope walk of her life.
Shortlists/ longlists/nominations: nominated for the Carnegie Medal 2015. Longlisted for the Oxfordshire Book Award, shortlisted for the Stockton Libraries Award 2016. Sunday Times Childrens’ Book of the Week (10th August 2014). The Sunday Express’s Top 12 Summer Reads for Children, Irish Independent’s Top 6 Autumn Reads. Lovereading4kids Book of The Year.
In Darkling Wood (Faber- July 2015)
When Alice’s brother gets a longed-for chance for a heart transplant, Alice is suddenly bundled off to her estranged grandmother’s house. There’s nothing good about staying with Nell, except for the beautiful Darkling Wood at the end of her garden – but Nell wants to have it cut down. Alice feels at home there, at peace, and even finds a friend, Flo. But Flo doesn’t seem to go to the local school and no one in town has heard of a girl with that name. When Flo shows Alice the surprising secrets of Darkling Wood, Alice starts to wonder, what is real? And can she find out in time to save the wood from destruction?
Longlists/shortlists/nominations: shortlisted for the Shropshire Book Award 2016, shortlisted for the Oxfordshire Book Awards 2016, shortlisted for the Calderdale Book Award 2016, long listed for the Hounslow Junior Book Award 2016. The Bookseller’s Book of the Month for July 2015.
The Snow Sister (October- 2015 Faber)
Ever since her sister, Agnes, died, Pearl has a tradition every time it snows. She makes a person out of snow. A snow sister. It makes Christmas feel a little less lonely.
On Christmas Eve, her father receives a letter about a long-lost relative’s will. Is their luck about to change? In anticipation of a better Christmas, Pearl goes to beg credit at Mr Noble’s grocery to get ingredients for a Christmas pudding. But she is refused, and chased down the street where she is hit by a hansom cab. The snow is falling so hard that they can’t take her home. She’ll have to stay at Flintfield Manor overnight, in a haunted room… Will Pearl make it home for Christmas?
Longlists/shortlists/nominations: The Times Childrens Book of the Week (24th October 2015)
Strange Star (Faber- July 2016)
‘They were coming tonight to tell ghost stories. ‘A tale to freeze the blood,’ was the only rule.’
Switzerland, 1816. On a stormy summer night, Lord Byron and his guests are gathered round the fire. Felix, their serving boy, can’t wait to hear their creepy tales. Yet real life is about to take a chilling turn- more chilling than any tale. Frantic pounding at the front door reveals a stranger, a girl covered in the most unusual scars. She claims to be looking for her sister, supposedly snatched from England by a woman called Mary Shelley. Someone else has followed her here too, she says. And the girl is terrified…
Longlists/shortlists/nominations: The Times Childrens Book of the Week, Longlisted for the Redbridge Book Award 2017, short listed for The Salisbury Book Award 2017, the Haringey Book award 2017 and the Hounslow Book Award 2017. A Lovereading4Kids Book of the Year 2016.