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Katherine Faulkner Books In Order

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Publication Order of Standalone Novels

Greenwich Park (2021)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Katherine Faulkner
Katherine Faulkner is a London based journalist and author. She studied History at Cambridge University, graduating with a First, before completing a Postgraduate Diploma in Newspaper Journalism.

Since then she’s been working as an investigative reporter and latterly as an editor. Katherine’s work has been published in several national papers, and she has worked at The Times, where she was the joint Head of News.

Katherine, as she worked as an undercover reporter, won the Cudlipp Award for public interest journalism and got nominated for a string of others. She was also commended by a committee of MP’s for having the highest standards of ethical investigative reporting.

She was inspired to write her first novel about the complexity of female friendships after she attended NCT classes while she was pregnant, and her experience of sudden intimacy with total strangers. And the opening scene is based rather heavily on this class: the jammed windows, heat, the awkward conversations.
From there, she began to wonder what it’d be like if you went along to one such class and found you could not get rid of the person that you had befriended, and just how that may play out for somebody that is heavily pregnant and already anxious and feeling just a tad isolated.

Katherine has found, in her not that vast experience that she likes to begin with a place, some characters, and an atmosphere (most importantly), and she spends quite a bunch of time at the start writing and feeling her way into these elements before she works on finalizing the plot at all.

She relates to the way Hilary Mantel described her process of ‘growing a book’: starting with just a few elements that feel important to her story, and then gradually allowing the novel to reveal itself, one piece at a time, through the process of her writing.

So she’s more of a pantser type, in that she did not do all that much plotting with “Greenwich Park”. That’s not to say that she doesn’t feel that plotting is important too, as it’s one of the most important and satisfying elements of the writing process she believes. It’s definitely important to give the reader the feeling that your plotting is really tight and make sure all of the pieces fit together in such a surprising and satisfying way, however it is something that she has found to be more helpful to focus on in her later drafts, once the characters and the story are realized a bit better. She has tried to do things the other way around—doing all of her plotting early on and staying very organized. But she’s found that it makes the writing fall flat, and she always has a better idea halfway through and changing her mind anyway.

Katie’s chapters were certainly inspired by Katherine’s own time working as a reporter for regional and national papers. She covered quite a few court cases, which included child exploitation and rape cases, and she did crime backgrounds, which gave her quite a lot to draw upon while writing Katie’s chapters. She likes to think that she’s probably got just slightly better taste in men than Katie’s got, though.

She wrote the novel while on maternity leave, as her job as Head of News at The Times was so demanding that she doesn’t believe she’d ever have gotten it finished had she still been working there. At least on maternity leave, she was able to allow her brain to focus solely on this novel. She definitely didn’t write all that much at all in those first three months, since it was much too much of a whirlwind.

After that, once she got a bit more sleep each night, she began taking her laptop out in the bottom of the stroller when she walked her daughter around, and then stopped to do a bit of writing once she could get her to sleep. By the time her daughter was six months, she’d gotten around 15,000 words down, and she was desperate to get the book finished up, however she knew she needed some help and a bit of structure.

So the second six months of her maternity leave, she decided to do the Faber novel-writing course, which gave her that much needed push to get a first draft finished.

“Greenwich Park” is the first stand alone novel and was released in the year 2021. Helen’s idyllic life, with the gorgeous Victorian house, handsome architect husband, and a cherished baby coming (after years trying) all starts changing the same day she attends her very first prenatal class and meets Rachel, who is an unpredictable single mom to be. Rachel does not seem all that maternal: she drinks, smokes, and professes to have very little interest in parenthood at all.

But Helen is still drawn to her. Rachel just maybe needs a friend. To be honest, Helen’s just a little lonely herself. At least Rachel is pretty fun to be with, she makes Helen laugh, distracts her from her fears, and invites her confidences.

However it’s Rachel’s increasingly erratic behavior is what’s so unsettling about her. And Helen isn’t even the only one that has noticed. Her family and friends started to suspect that this odd new friend might be connected to their shared history in some unexpected ways. When Rachel threatens to expose a previous crime which could destroy all their lives, it becomes obvious that there’re more than just a few secrets laying underneath the broad-leaved trees and warm lamplight in Greenwich Park.

This is a captivating domestic mystery novel with a rather ingenuous storyline. Each of the characters are well drawn with their own intriguing backstories. The settings are well detailed and they spring to life in such a vivid way, and this plot is well executed with some chapters that alternate between three distinct perspectives. As the tension ratchets up in each of the chapters, Katherine brings this thrilling mystery novel to a twist filled and jaw dropper of a conclusion. Katherine delivers a gloriously tangled game of cat and mouse which kept the twists coming until the very last moment.

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