Fiona Barton


Fiona Barton’s debut, The Widow, was a Sunday Times and New York Times bestseller and has been published in thirty-five countries and optioned for television. Her second novel, The Child, was a Sunday Times bestseller. Born in Cambridge, Fiona lives on the Sussex coast.

Previously, she was a senior writer at the Daily Mail, news editor at the Daily Telegraph, and chief reporter at the Mail on Sunday, where she won Reporter of the Year at the British Press Awards.

While working as a journalist, Fiona reported on many high-profile criminal cases and she developed a fascination with watching those involved, their body language and verbal tics. Fiona interviewed people at the heart of these crimes, from the guilty to their families, as well as those on the periphery, and found it was those just outside the spotlight who interested her most…


A classic whodunnit that you won’t be able to put down

Woman's Weekly

Eerie yet enthralling….Clue after clue leads Kate to a bone-chilling discovery: that danger is much closer to home than she realizes.

Woman's World

Like her two previous bestselling novels, The Widow and The Child, Barton's latest thriller is masterfully written, expertly plotted, and skillfully paced… Barton creates a twisty mystery that packs a serious emotional punch.

A gripping, stylish thriller

The Lady

What a page turner! Fiona Barton’s first two novels, The Widow and The Child were superb reads, but The Suspect surpasses them both in tension and drama. A sharp storyteller with a great imagination, empathy for all her characters and the ability to deliver a plausible plot with panache – I can’t wait for Fiona Barton’s next novel

My Weekly

A nail-biting tale of missing teens and the parents who worry for them. Fiona Barton’s first two novels, The Widow and The Child, were international bestsellers. The British novelist’s third offering, The Suspect, deserves equal success. It’s an expertly written look at a painful subject: the way parents often suffer when their children go forth to confront the dangers of this world....Barton’s characterizations are exceptional.

The Washington Post

Required Reading

New York Post

Barton continues to charm….Barton’s classic use of short chapters and multiple narratives keep the reader on edge, helping to move the story along at a brisk pace. Her ability to sustain the tension while not overwhelming the reader is to be applauded. And, as in her earlier works, Barton’s skill in weaving both unexpected yet believable twists and turns right up to the final page is commendable

USA Today

Fiona Barton unfurls a tense story with brilliant use of flashbacks and face-slapping revelations. Her experience as a national newspaper journalist makes for authenticity and brilliant storytelling

The Daily Express

Toggling between Thailand and the UK, with alternating viewpoints from Kate, Sparkes, Alex’s mum and Alex herself, in the form of her journal, this fast-paced, skilfully plotted story, with its final devastating twist, cements one-time journalist Fiona Barton as one of the finest crime writers of her generation.

The Mature Times

Barton handles the complicated resulting interplay of voices deftly, and is just as convincing in getting inside the teenager’s head as she is when portraying the grown-ups searching for her. The novel works best, though, as a moral tale about grief.

The Sunday Times

Barton brings a hard-nosed efficiency to her storytelling, which is propulsive…the hostel scenes, populated by vulnerable teens teetering on the cusp of adulthood, have a sparking authenticity and her final twist is audacious.


Utterly engrossing…I lived inside this book for two days—and I’m still thinking about it. Superb!

Shari Lapena
bestselling author of The Couple Next Door

The current high standing of the genre [psychological suspense] is due to such writers as the skilful Fiona Barton...As in The Widow, Barton has the full measure of the thriller narrative

Barry Forshaw
CrimeTime Blog

The exceedingly twisty tale…will test Kate, and her painfully conflicting loyalties, to the limit. Barton’s many fans will be rewarded.

Publisher's Weekly

Fiona Barton has taken a nightmarish scenario and woven it into a dark and twisty tale that sees tenacious journalist Kate Waters at her puzzle-solving best. This is a novel with real heart and a thoroughly surprising and thought-provoking ending.

Lesley Kara
author of The Rumour

In The Suspect, Fiona Barton has created a beautifully crafted and intricate novel where we see every situation from every perspective until her final twist of the kaleidoscope when everything suddenly makes sense. The characters in this beautifully written novel will stay with me for a long time and the tension created by the twists and cliff-hangers made this a breath-taking and heart-pounding read.

Mary Torjussen
acclaimed author of Gone Without a Trace

An utterly compelling and emotional read full of suspense and intrigue. I didn’t want it to end.

Mel Sherratt
acclaimed crime writer

Intelligent, insightful and compelling. A clever, twisting whodunnit that delivers an emotional punch. I loved it.

C.L. Taylor
#1 bestselling author of The Accident and The Lie

Fiona Barton is a master of “just one more chapter” and kept me reading late into the night, unable to look away. The Suspect is a wonderfully human thriller, with characters I believed entirely and a crime that got right under my skin.

Holly Seddon
bestselling author of Try Not To Breathe

Wow, Fiona Barton really knows her stuff; The Suspect is utterly authentic, terrifyingly plausible and an absolute heartbreaker.

Jill Mansel
internationally bestselling author

A fast-paced whodunnit with heart, characters I feel I know and a deliciously dark twist. Superb writing, often blackly funny, and a scene that made me cry into my pillow. Bravo.

Gillian McAllister
author of Everything But The Truth

A fabulous story, for weaving such a brilliant plot and for twisty-turny fooling me YET AGAIN

Joanna Cannon
author of The Trouble with Goats and Sheep

Fiona Barton has masterfully delivered again with “The Child,” her follow-up to her bestselling debut novel, The Widow. It’s easy to see that Barton spent time in Kate’s shoes when she was an award-winning journalist. Ultimately, Barton tells the child’s story as only she can — brilliantly.

The Star Telegram

A gruesome discovery under a London house drives journalist Kate Waters to pursue a missing-baby story, but, this being a Barton thriller, there’s more to pretty much everything than meets the eye.

Boston Globe

A twisty and tantalizing story you won’t be able to put down.


The discovery of a skeleton changes three women’s lives in this satisfying mystery. The three—a reporter, a troubled editor and the mother of a newborn kidnapped years earlier—narrate alternately, keeping the tension humming. But it’s not all suspense: Long after their secrets are revealed, the author’s compassion for her wounded characters lingers.

People magazine

The main character Kate’s tenacity to uncover the truth is the driving force behind the plot. Every couple of chapters Barton kicks the novel’s suspense into a new gear, and you won’t be able to put it down until all the secrets have been shared.

The Press Association

Gripping…you can almost sense the thrill of the chase here and Kate become more determined to uncover the truth. But Barton is just as interested in the less visible but very real lives of the people behind the headlines.

The Metro

This new thriller underlines her exceptional ability to sustain a striking story from first page to last… a twisty and satisfying plot.

The Daily Mail

A shocking and suspenseful story full of refreshingly unexpected twists.

The Mail on Sunday

Fiona Barton’s debut novel The Widow was a bestseller last year and her second psychological thriller deserves to follow suit. It is gruesomely compelling, mawkish and macabre with abundant twists and turns to keep the interest levels high.

Daily Express

A pacy and satisfyingly serpentine thriller

Woman and Home

Barton flirts with melodrama at times but pulls back and allows her characters to develop into fully realized, deeply scarred women whose wounds aren’t always visible. This is as much a why-dunit as a whodunit, with the real question being whether it’s possible to heal and live with the truth after hiding behind a lie for so long.

Kirkus Reviews

Barton’s second well-plotted outing, with its sustained tension and believable characters, is an excellent addition to the popular psychological thriller genre. Readers who liked Barton’s first novel, Paula Hawkins’s The Girl On a Train, and Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl will love this.

Library Journal (Starred)

A lightning-paced, twisty story with an ending so surprising you might have to read it twice.

Good Housekeeping

Arriving just in time for summer, Fiona Barton’s The Child is a perfect blend of beach read and book club selection… In addition to being a page-turning whodunit, The Child is also a subtle exploration of the relationships between mothers and their children, their bonds and battles… A novel that is both fast-paced and thought-provoking, it keeps the reader guessing right to the end. The Child truly is the best of both worlds.

USA Today

I loved The Widow, but Fiona Barton has truly outdone herself in her gripping and wonderfully written second novel. Like any great thriller, it takes you on a fast-paced ride with plot twists to the very end. But what will surprise you most about The Child is how deeply you’ll feel for the characters as you turn the pages furiously to reveal their secrets.

Amy Stuart
author of Still Mine

Fiona Barton has outdone herself with The Child. An engrossing, irresistible story about the coming to light of a long-buried secret and an absolutely fabulous read—I loved it!

Shari Lapena
author of No.1 Sunday Times bestseller The Couple Next Door

This gripping story kept me guessing to the end. I loved it! Barton treats her broken characters with such compassion that I wanted to reach into the pages and hug them.

Liz Nugent
author of Unravelling Oliver

Tense, tantalising, and ultimately very satisfying…definitely one of the year’s must-reads.

Lee Child

Clever and compelling. You’ll love THE CHILD.

Clare Mackintosh
Sunday Times bestselling author of I Let You Go and I See You

She tells her tale with a realism and restraint that add to its shattering impact.

Publishers Weekly
(starred review)

A gripping psychological thriller with an unusual premise – just how much does the widow of a suspected kidnapper and paedophile know about what he is alleged to have done? The police want to know and so do the press. Everyone is after the ultimate scoop – an interview and an insight not only into her life but also her head.

C.L. Taylor
No. 2 Sunday Times bestselling author of The Escape

The ultimate psychological thriller. Barton carefully unspools this dark, intimate tale of a terrible crime, a stifling marriage, and the lies spouses tell not just to each other, but to themselves in order to make it through.

Lisa Gardner
New York Times and Sunday Times bestselling author of The Perfect Husband

Stunning from start to finish. I devoured it in one sitting. The best book I’ve read this year. If you liked GONE GIRL, you’ll love this.

M.J. Aldridge
author of Richard and Judy pick Eeny Meeny

If you liked GONE GIRL and THE GIRL ON THE TRAIN, you might want to pick up THE WIDOW by Fiona Barton. Engrossing. Suspenseful.

Stephen King

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