Crime Scene - - CASE NOTES -

The Theak­ston prize win­ner on her new novel and police connections

Was there a lot of pres­sure writ­ing the fol­low-up to I Let You Go?

The pres­sure was enor­mous. No one was say­ing “You must write a bet­ter book,” but it was very ob­vi­ous I needed to do that. I had a bit of a false start with a story I re­alised just wasn’t go­ing to be strong enough.

You were a police of­fi­cer. Did that help with au­then­tic­ity?

I feel au­then­tic­ity is some­thing I re­ally no­tice when I’m read­ing books, and so I sup­pose a pri­or­ity for my books is that I wanted peo­ple to re­ally im­merse them­selves in them and feel as though they ab­so­lutely could have hap­pened.

Did you have to do much re­search?

With I See You, I had to do quite a lot of re­search be­cause I’ve never worked in the Bri­tish Trans­port Police or the Met. But it’s easy when you’re from that world – I had ac­cess to serv­ing of­fi­cers in the fly­ing squad.

Is I See You very dif­fer­ent?

The twist in I Let You Go can’t be repli­cated. I think what prob­a­bly sets the two books apart is I See You has a much faster pace and it has this very clear sin­gle premise: we all do the same thing every day, and imag­ine if some­one was to use that against us. And I’ve al­ways been fas­ci­nated by the daily com­mute.

I See You (Sphere) is out now.

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