Chris Cleave is 40. He lives in London with his wife and three children. His brother is the designer Alex Cleave, whose website is here.
Chris’s debut novel Incendiary won a 2006 Somerset Maugham Award, was shortlisted for the 2006 Commonwealth Writers Prize, and won the United States Book-of-the-Month Club’s First Fiction award 2005. It had an unusual start in life, being a novel about an imagined terrorist attack on London that was published, by awful coincidence, on 7th July 2005. More about that here.
His second novel, published in 2008, is titled Little Bee in Canada and the US, where it is a New York Times #1 bestseller. It is titled The Other Hand in the UK, where it is a Sunday Times bestseller. It was shortlisted for the Costa Novel Award. The novel arose out of a short spell that the author spent working in a British immigration detention centre – more about that here.
Gold, published in 2012, is Chris’s third novel.
This year Chris is chairman of the judges for the Desmond Elliott Prize. He is also finishing a new novel set in London and the Mediterranean and inspired by the lives of his grandmother, who drove ambulances during the war, and his grandfather, who was part of the fledgling SAS and who was once assigned to Randolph Churchill with the order: “Look after him, David, and if at all possible keep him out of trouble.”