Chris Whitaker - Author

About the Author

Chris Whitaker's debut novel, Tall Oaks, was published in 2016 by Bonnier Zaffre. It was a Guardian crime book of the month as well as featuring in Crime Time's top 100 books of 2016 and BuzzFeed's incredible summer reads. Chris's second novel, All The Wicked Girls, will be published in autumn 2017. Chris lives in Hertfordshire with his wife and two young sons.

Featured books by Chris Whitaker

The Forevers

The Forevers

Author: Chris Whitaker Format: Hardback Release Date: 08/07/2021

Opening with the arresting scene of a body being discovered, the third in a month, Chris Whittaker’s The Forevers is a thought-provoking page-turner founded on a killer concept - if you could get away with anything without consequence, if the world was about to end, what would you do?   “The dead girl lay face down, ashen hair fanned out like she’d been posed. Some kind of terrible masterpiece Mae knew she’d never forget”. This is the grim reality of Mae’s present. At seventeen, she thinks back to ten years earlier, when news of the asteroid first broke - a ticking timebomb that’s set to explode. There’s no avoiding the terrible truth - “She was seventeen years old. She would die in one month”, for the Earth was “so broken not a thing would survive.” Amidst increasing rumbles and tremors, amidst people’s preparations for death, the discovery of the body of Mae’s popular peer Abi provokes questions - Did she jump? Was she pushed?    The sense of time running out, and the brutal psychological impact of knowing that the end is nigh, is masterfully evoked in all its heart-stopping starkness, while the dynamics between the young adult characters are authentically realised. All in all, this near-dystopian thriller has thought-provoking bite.  

We Begin at the End

We Begin at the End

Author: Chris Whitaker Format: Paperback Release Date: 06/08/2020

Achingly painful and stunningly beautiful, be prepared to fall long and hard for We Begin at the End. This is a crime novel that will stay with me, and is now firmly ensconced on my list of favourite books. Duchess, full of awareness of the difficulties of life at just 13 years old, throws her family’s life into chaos when Vincent King is released from prison after 30 years. The first few sentences caught and held me, the prologue sets a shiver inducing scene. By the time the first chapter began I was already in thrall to Chris Whitaker’s writing. I felt, really felt the pain, the love, the joy, the desolation, each feeling clamouring to have its say. Duchess has stamped her way into my mind and will remain there, occasionally elbowing my attention into remembering. I adore her, she feels vibrantly alive to me. The ending felt truly perfect, and not that I would deface a book of course, but imagine ‘Highly Recommended’ stamped all over We Begin at the End. We have chosen this as a Book of the Month, Liz Pick of the Month, and a LoveReading Star Book too, because it is so completely gorgeous. I’m just sad that I don’t have the opportunity to experience it again for the very first time.

Star Books
All The Wicked Girls

All The Wicked Girls

Author: Chris Whitaker Format: Paperback Release Date: 24/08/2017

For fans of Lisa Jewell, Holly Seddon and Local Girl Missing, All the Wicked Girls is a gripping thriller with a huge heart from an exceptional talent. Everyone loves Summer Ryan. A model student and musical prodigy, she's a ray of light in the struggling small town of Grace, Alabama - especially compared to her troubled sister, Raine. Then Summer vanishes. Raine throws herself into the investigation, aided by a most unlikely ally, but the closer she gets to the truth, the more dangerous her search becomes. And perhaps there was always more to Summer than met the eye . . .

Tall Oaks

Tall Oaks

Author: Chris Whitaker Format: Paperback Release Date: 08/09/2016

One of Our Books of the Year 2017 | Shortlisted for the CWA John Creasey (New Blood) Dagger 2017. Shortlisted for the Last Laugh Award at the CrimeFest Awards 2017. A first British crime novel, albeit set in a small American community, that appeared a few months ago and only recently came to my attention, Tall Oaks takes a sometimes hackneyed theme and turns it into a thing of wonder. A small child has gone missing, apparently kidnapped and we follow how a group of varied inhabitants of Tall Oaks are affected by the disappearance in an atmosphere reminiscent of both Twin Peaks and Fargo, as the tale that unfolds sensitively blends pathos and even tragedy with an affectionate sense of the absurd and the comic. The grieving mother falls into a downward spiral of despair and degradation, the errant father remains suspiciously absent and uninvolved, the policemen investigating the case obstinately fights against the odds and his own, terrible attraction to one of the suspects, a group of local teenagers, including a splendidly comic figure who aims to become the town's master criminal and dresses ridiculously to cultivate his image, his Syrian refugee acolyte and sidekick, the slightly retarded mother's boy who works at the photo shop, a forlorn waitress and a host of other striking characters take the stage in turn as the story develops and races to a both abominably poignant and also comic conclusion that ties all the threads together most satisfactorily. A gem of a story. Stunning. ~ Maxim Jakubowski Maxim Jakubowski's April 2017 Book of the Month.  

eBooks of the Month

Other books by Chris Whitaker

The Forevers

The Forevers

Author: Chris Whitaker Format: Paperback Release Date: 08/07/2021

What would you do if you knew the world was going to be destroyed by a huge asteroid in one month? The mesmerising YA debut from the winner of the CWA Gold Dagger Award for Best Crime Novel 2021 and the New York Times Bestselling author of We Begin at the End. They knew the end was coming. They saw it ten years back, when it was far enough away in space and time and meaning. The changes were gradual, and then sudden. For Mae and her friends, it means navigating a life where action and consequence are no longer related. Where the popular are both trophies and targets. And where petty grudges turn deadlier with each passing day. So, did Abi Manton jump off the cliff or was she pushed? Her death is just the beginning of the end. With teachers losing control of their students and themselves, and the end rushing toward all of them, it leaves everyone facing the answer to one, simple question... What would you do if you could get away with anything?

We Begin at the End

We Begin at the End

Author: Chris Whitaker Format: Hardback Release Date: 02/04/2020

Achingly painful and stunningly beautiful, be prepared to fall long and hard for We Begin at the End. This is a crime novel that will stay with me, and is now firmly ensconced on my list of favourite books. Duchess, full of awareness of the difficulties of life at just 13 years old, throws her family’s life into chaos when Vincent King is released from prison after 30 years. The first few sentences caught and held me, the prologue sets a shiver inducing scene. By the time the first chapter began I was already in thrall to Chris Whitaker’s writing. I felt, really felt the pain, the love, the joy, the desolation, each feeling clamouring to have its say. Duchess has stamped her way into my mind and will remain there, occasionally elbowing my attention into remembering. I adore her, she feels vibrantly alive to me. The ending felt truly perfect, and not that I would deface a book of course, but imagine ‘Highly Recommended’ stamped all over We Begin at the End. We have chosen this as a Book of the Month, Liz Pick of the Month, and a LoveReading Star Book too, because it is so completely gorgeous. I’m just sad that I don’t have the opportunity to experience it again for the very first time.  

Star Books

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