Book Cover: One Puzzling Afternoon
Editions:Hardcover: £ 14.99
ISBN: 1804181250 / 978-1804181256
Pages: 400
Kindle - Kindle Edition: £ 7.59Audiobook

A mystery she can't remember. A friend she can't forget.

I kept your secret Lucy. I've kept it for more than sixty years . . .

It is 1951, and at number six Sycamore Street fifteen-year-old Edie Green is lonely. Living alone with her eccentric mother - who conducts seances for the local Ludthorpe community - she is desperate for something to shake her from her dull, isolated life.

When the popular, pretty Lucy Theddle befriends Edie, she thinks all her troubles are over. But Lucy has a secret, one Edie is not certain she should keep . . .

Then Lucy goes missing.

2018. Edie is eighty-two and back living in Ludthorpe. When one day she glimpses Lucy Theddle, still looking the same as she did at fifteen, her family write it off as one of her many mix ups. There's a lot Edie gets confused about these days. A lot she finds difficult to remember. But what she does know is this: she must find out what happened to Lucy, all those years ago . . .

Publisher: Zaffre

'I first see Lucy Theddle standing outside the post office on Tuesday afternoon. Looking exactly the same as she did in 1951.'


I loved this book.

Marianne Cronin, The 100 Years of Lenni and Margot

A wonderful protagonist and a real page turner. Completely captivating.

Louise Hare, This Lovely City

A lovely combination of a cracking story and a host of characters you want to reach out and hug.

Jo Leevers, Tell Me How This Ends

An uplifting, bittersweet story with a page-turning mystery at its heart. A beautifully atmospheric and endearing book.

Freya Sampson, The Last Chance Library

One Puzzling Afternoon has one of the most endearing protagonists in recent crime fiction. A spellbinding novel that enchants and unnerves in equal measure.

Inga Vesper, The Long, Long, Afternoon

A mystery deftly woven with tension and compassion

Beth Morrey, Saving Missy

heartbreaking, funny and gripping

Fabulous Magazine

Utterly compelling, darkly unnerving, and a joyful masterclass in storytelling.


An outstanding must-read


Great atmosphere and even better characters

Lucy Gilmore, author of The Lonely Hearts Book Club

A splendid read. Both scintillating and sincere. I plan to spend many an afternoon with a Critchley novel in my hand.

Lo Patrick, The Floating Girls