Beginner’s Pluck


Daughter of two doctors, Isabelle always wanted to write. She wrote short stories in her teens, then studied English at Cambridge. After university, she worked for a specialist antique dealer in London, started writing about her work, and through that, became a freelance journalist.

“I wrote several books on decorative arts, and in 1992 wrote dramas for TV, full time. I wrote mainly crime drama until the bottom fell out of TV drama about five years ago. That’s when I decided to write a novel. Once I got the idea, it flowed easily.”

Who is Isabelle Grey?

Date of birth: 1954, in London.

Education: Manchester High School. Cambridge University.

Home: London.

Family: Divorced with one daughter.

The Day Job: Full-time writer. “And I teach screen writing at Central St Martin’s.”

Hobbies: Walking and cooking.

Favourite Writers: Edith Wharton, Raymond Carver, John Le Carré.

Second Novel: “It’s done, and is due out next Spring. It’s about how parents who are trying to do the right thing, end up doing the worst thing.”

Top Writing Tip: “Get to the end and rewrite. And let the reader do some work. Then they’re interested and they care.”

Web: Twitter: @isabellegrey

The Debut

Out of Sight. Quercus: €17 euro. Kindle: €6.81

Patrick is a loving husband and father, but one day his forgetfulness causes a fatal accident. How could it have happened, and can he ever forgive himself? This psychological thriller moves between England and France, as Patrick tries to get his life together again. But, unable to trust himself, can he ever commit to a relationship again?

“I’d noticed that people can get stuck with repetitive behaviour; behaviour that does them no good. We don’t see what we’re doing to ourselves, because of incidents in our past. I wanted to explore that. And a French newspaper article about two, loving fathers who had accidentally caused the death of a child gave me the key.”

The Verdict: Clever, and utterly original. This debut plays on a parent’s greatest fear.


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