Carnegie Award nominated YA author, Emily Critchley, will publish her debut adult fiction novel, One Puzzling Afternoon, in 2023. UK publisher Zaffre and US publisher Sourcebooks acquired the book and plan to publish in May and Autumn 2023, respectively.

One Puzzling Afternoon follows eighty-four-year old Edie Green, who – facing dementia – must look back into the past to discover what happened to her school friend Lucy, who went missing over sixty years ago.

Author Emily Critchley said: ‘It’s an honour to be publishing my novel with Bonnier and I feel incredibly grateful to be working with Sophie and such a supportive and creative team. Edie’s story has been close to my heart for some time now and I’m delighted to be able to share it with readers. I hope she charms them as much as she did me, and that readers will experience the same escapism I enjoyed when writing. I owe a huge thank you to my agent, Hayley Steed, for finding me the perfect publisher and for believing in the book every step of the way.’

Zaffre & Manilla Press publishing director Sophie Orme said: ‘I was completely captivated by One Puzzling Afternoon which moves between the 1950s and the present day and follows Edie Green, who faced with dementia realises she must remember what happened to her school friend Lucy, who went missing years before. As well as creating an atmospheric, page-turning small-town mystery, Emily Critchley writes so beautifully, with such compassion and warmth, about ageing. Fans of Joanna Cannon and Elizabeth is Missing will love this.’

Emily’s agent Hayley Steed said: ‘I’m delighted that Emily’s debut adult novel has found such a wonderful home with Sophie and Bonnier. The voice of Edie had me captured from the very first page, and it’s a beautiful story, rich with heart-wrenching tenderness and a gripping mystery at its heart.’