Alice Clark-Platts


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Agent: Ariella Feiner
Assistant: Molly Jamieson


Alice Clark-Platts is a former human rights lawyer living in Singapore. She has worked at the UN International Criminal Tribunal in connection with the Rwandan genocide and also on cases involving Winnie Mandela and the rapper Snoop Dogg. Her novel Warchild was short-listed for the Impress Prize 2013 and she was shortlisted for the Dead Good Reader Awards 2017 in the Best Police Procedural category for The Taken. Alice’s short fiction has been published in numerous places including the recent anthology Deadlier, which features 100 of the best crime stories by women, selected and introduced by Sophie Hannah.

Her third novel, The Flower Girls, was sold in a five-publisher auction to Bloomsbury.



The Flower Girls. Laurel and Primrose.

One convicted of murder, the other given a new identity.

Now, nineteen years later, another child has gone missing.

And The Flower Girls are about to hit the headlines all over again...

‘A tense, intriguing and memorable thriller. I couldn’t put it down’ Sophie Hannah
‘Dark, suspenseful and utterly chilling’ Lisa Ballantyne, author of The Guilty One
‘Chilling, atmospheric and incredibly compelling. EXCELLENT.’ Will Dean, author of Zoe Ball/ITV Book Club pick, Dark Pines
‘Phenomenal. A deep and clever exploration of a dark subject. I’ve never read anything quite like it.’ Fiona Mitchell, author of The Maid’s Room
‘I was completely hooked! The Flower Girls is dark and unsettling, with complex characters that drew me in from the very beginning. It was an utterly absorbing read, with a clever twist at the end, as well as a few unexpected moments throughout’ Elle Croft, author of The Guilty Wife
‘This was as dark and gripping as I hoped it would be. But it’s also something else: about justice, rehabilitation and hope.’ Anna Mazzola, author of The Unseeing
‘I finished The Flower Girls last night and I'm still reeling. A brilliant, thought-provoking read’ Francesca Jakobi, author of Bitter
‘Every bit as brilliant as I thought it would be. Twisty, sinister and heartbreaking. Such beautiful writing; so, so dark. Prepare to be fully disturbed’ Cressida McLaughlin, author of The House of Birds and Butterflies
‘A tense and quite chilling look at past crimes, current beliefs and a determination to uncover the truth. Alice Clark-Platts excels in creating strong and believable female characters …  Child murder and child murderers are such a taboo and shocking subject but this author has dealt with this darkest and troublesome of plot lines with an expert ease’  Anne Cater
‘A dark, disturbing and all-consuming mystery’ The Sun
'Absorbing' The Metro

‘Creepy and unnerving, Alice Clark-Platts’ dark story is getting huge amounts of buzz’ Stylist

'A sharp exploration of the ethical, social and legal issues involved in crimes committed by children, draped elegantly in the cloak of a sinister psychological thriller.’ Sydney Morning Herald


"This debut novel had me on the edge of my sun lounger for a whole day. Excellent plotting and a genuinely unguessable resolution to the mystery." - Sophie  Hannah
"There is a gripping, economic precision in this highly charged thriller." - Ralph Fiennes
"I was hooked from the first page. Opens the door to an insidioius world - eye-opening, harrowing and terrifyingly plausible." - Greta Scacchi
"Once I started reading it I couldn't stop. A brilliantly plotted and utterly gripping thriller," - Emma Kavanagh
"A thought-provoking, atmospheric and emotional page-turner - brimming with mystery and suspense. I absolutely loved the novel and devoured it from cover to cover." - Paul Pilkington
"Intriguing and sinister with masterful plotting and tension. . .  A new crime author I can't wait to read again." - Mel Sherratt
"Grabbed me from the first page and wouldn't let go. A compelling read, beautifully written. . . a tense, captivating tale, brilliantly told." - Rachel Abbott
"Superbly gripping. . . a very assured page-turning storm I read in one sitting." - Stav Sherez
"An intelligent and thrilling debut." - Peter Guttridge


Publication DetailsNotes




A stunning debut - part psychological thriller, part detective novel - from a powerful and distinctive new voice.

The murder of a first-year university student shocks the city of Durham. The victim, Emily Brabents, was from the privileged and popular set at Joyce College, a cradle for the country's future elite.

As Detective Inspector Erica Martin investigates the college, she finds a close-knit community fuelled by jealousy, obsession and secrets. But the very last thing she expects is an instant confession . . .

The picture of Emily that begins to emerge is that of a girl wanted by everyone, but not truly known by anyone. Anyone, that is, except Daniel Shepherd. Her fellow student, ever-faithful friend and the only one who cares. The only one who would do anything for her . . .




There's the lost.
There's the missing.
And there's the taken.

She asked me once if we had any secrets, and I shook my head.
'No secrets between us,' she said.
'No,' I answered. 'Never ever.'

In a Durham hotel at dawn, celebrated preacher Tristan Snow is murdered as he prays. None of the other guests - not even his daughter, his wife, or her sister - saw or heard anything.

But then again, they all had a motive for murder.

Detective Inspector Erica Martin is confronted by secrets and lies, lost in a case where nothing is what it seems.

With no answers, DI Martin is consumed by questions: Is anyone in this family innocent? When the victim might have been a monster - is there such a thing as justice? And does anyone deserve to die?