Amanda Coe lives in London with her husband and two children. She has an English MA from Oxford University and is a screenwriting associate of the National Film and Television School. She has written extensively for television: her credits include creating the award-winning Channel 4 series 'As If' and most recently writing the feature 'Margot' for BBC4. Her adaptation of John Braine's 'Room At The Top' was screened by the BBC in 2011. WHAT THEY DO IN THE DARK, her second novel, was published in 2011 by Virago and Norton, followed by GETTING COLDER in November 2014.
Amanda's new novel, EVERYTHING YOU DO IS WRONG, was published by Fleet - the new literary imprint of Little, Brown - in October 2017.
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Praise for EVERYTHING YOU DO IS WRONG (2017):
'[Coe] deploys her tropes with intelligence, and each twist in Everything You Do Is Wrong is designed to confound the reader's expectations. The naked body of a young girl is found on a beach but, rest assured, this never turns into one of those "the-summer-we-all-changed" novels about nasty things in woodsheds... [She] writes with inventiveness and a vivid sense of place - those great skies and pounding waves... will look great on TV, which is probably its ultimate destination.' Kate Saunders, The Times
Praise for GETTING COLDER (2014):
'Crisply plotted and filled with pleasurably sharp observations. Coe turns a winning phrase... [her] new novel succeeds with style' Guardian
'Getting Colder has once again proved that Coe's a fearless writer, not afraid to linger in the murky, messy corners of her characters' lives' Independent
'[A] brilliantly acute reading of grief, self-interest and the persistence of old wounds' FT
Praise for WHAT THEY DO IN THE DARK (2011):
'One of the most masterly, disturbing pieces of fiction I've read in a long while - a stripped-down, unsentimental portrait of childhood that will send shivers down your spine... [It] will leave you haunted long after you've read the final page' Sunday Times
'They used to warn people "of a nervous disposition" if a TV programme was going to be tough viewing. As a responsible critic, I have to say the same about this brilliant novel' Readers Digest
'A dark, disturbing look at a 1970s childhood, as a tetchy relationship between two schoolgirls culminates in a truly shocking ending... Coe’s impressive debut is a shadowy creation, rich with 70s nostalgia... she brings the story to an impulsively brutal conclusion' Marie Claire
'Superbly plotted, building, from seemingly disparate elements, with a dread inevitability to a tense and shocking finale' Mail Online
Harmony's teenage craving for drama is answered when a body is discovered by her aunt Mel on Evensand beach. But the naked, lifeless young woman turns out - problematically - to be alive. Unable to speak or remember where she came from, the woman is named Storm by her nurses.
Surrounded by doctors, psychiatrists and policemen, Storm remains provocatively silent. Harmony is desperate to fill in the gaps in Storm's story, while the responsibility Mel feels for the woman she rescued begins to skew the course of her own settled life. Their efforts to solve the mystery clash with the efforts of rookie constable Mason, assigned to the case and determined to help this damsel he feels to be very much in distress.
Will any of them be able to find out who Storm really is? And what if the distress belongs to everyone but her?
Everything You Do Is Wrong is a compelling exploration of how this enigma sets a family's good and bad intentions crashing into each other, with unforgettable consequences.
They were colour-supplement darlings of the 1980s: Patrick, the sexy, ferocious young playwright, scourge of an enthralled establishment, and Sara, who abandoned her two children to fulfil her destiny as Patrick's beautiful, devoted wife and muse.
Thirty-five years later, Sara's death leaves Patrick alone in their crumbling house in Cornwall, with his whisky, his writer's block and his undimmed rage against the world. But bereavement is no respecter of life's estrangements, and Sara's children, Louise and Nigel, are now adults, with memories, questions and agendas of their own. What was their mother really like? Why did she leave them? What has she left them? And how can Patrick carry on without the love of his life?
Getting Colder is a painfully funny and perceptive novel about family, love, and how sometimes the harder you look, the less you find.
WHAT THEY DO IN THE DARK is the kind of novel that delivers its blow with such unadulterated force that all you can hear for a while is white noise, until the voices swim back into your consciousness, those inconsequential, funny voices with their varying degrees of indifference, cynicism, faux-concern, self-righteousness, all of them guilty as hell, and by implication the reader is guilty as well, for not having seen any of it coming, for walking into the trap completely unsuspecting. It shows how victims can turn into the most fiendish perpetrators and that the question of guilt will never be satisfactorily answered.
A child's imaginary friend, a woman who wants a baby more than anything, the holiday from hell, and the friend who tries to help too much—these are all part of this extraordinary collection of stories from a wonderful new young writer. With her perceptive eye on urban chic, the neglected women, the fantasist girlfriend, love, desire, passion, and revenge, Amanda Coe writes in a sharp, detailed and utterly readable style which picks up every nuance, tone and twist of character.