Anna Bailey

Books Alice Lutyens, +44 (0)20 7393 4400 Email Alice Lutyens

Tall Bones

book | Fiction | Apr 2021
World → Penguin Random House (Ed. Kirsty Dunseath)

Set in a claustrophobic and remote town in Colorado, Tall Bones is a shattering crime novel that explores a fractured community after the disappearance of a teenage girl.

When 17-year-old Abigail disappears her best friend Emma, compelled by the guilt of leaving her alone, sets out to find the truth. But as the details of that night unfold, the festering secrets and resentment of both Abigail’s family and the townspeople begin to surface with devastating consequences.

A literary page-turner, it is for fans of Celeste Ng and Jane Harper.


Audio Rights


Transworld Publishers manages the translation rights for Tall Bones

Film Rights


Contact Luke Speed for more information


Chilling and compulsive. Tall Bones is a dazzling debut

Kate Hamer, author of The Girl in the Red Coat

Tall Bones brilliantly conjures up the oppressive claustrophobia of the small town and I felt so strongly about some of the characters that I had to check the ending to make sure they were ok! Extremely well written... fantastic.

Harriet Tyce, author of Blood Orange

With Tall Bones, Anna Bailey bursts onto the scene with a wonderfully haunting debut. Small-town intrigue, exquisitely drawn.

Jane Harper, best-selling author of The Dry

An intricate and compelling thriller, beautifully nuanced and wonderfully claustrophobic. Brilliant.

S J Watson, best-selling author of Before I Go To Sleep

Anna Bailey’s debut is irresistible, a compelling and nuanced psychological thriller suffused with small town prejudice and dark family secrets.

Paula Hawkins, best-selling author of The Girl on the Train

Tall Bones is as atmospheric as it gets - a stunning debut that delivers on every level. Reminded me a little of Jane Harper's The Dry.

Renee Knight, author of Disclaimer

Smart and compassionate, full of poetry and rage and shy hopes and shredded dreams and missing girls and family secrets and the dark, shameful underbelly of small town life.

Tammy Cohen, author of Stop at Nothing

A terrific debut about guilt, secrets and complex family dynamics - the writing is vivid & assured: Anna Bailey is definitely one to watch.

Lucy Atkins, author of Magpie Lane

Brilliant! Could not put it down. It’s utterly gripping and beautifully written.

Katie Fforde, author of A French Affair

An elegant, mesmerizing debut—Anna Bailey explores festering secrets and family trauma with a sharp, yet tender gaze. This book reads like a whisper in the dark.

Danya Kukafka, author of Girl in Snow

Gripping and so beautifully written Tall Bones is spellbinding; dark and menacing, but also so full of love and hope. I loved it. I cried.

Cressida McLaughlin, author of The Cornish Cream Tea Bus

A clever, twisting debut, about the dark side of small town America. It is packed with secrets like firecrackers ready to ignite.

Francine Toon, author of Pine

Anna Bailey writes like a dream about teenage love and lust, the terror of knowledge and the claustrophobia of families and of small towns...Tall Bones is as brutal, as bittersweet, as tender and as tense as first love itself.

Emma Flint, author of Little Death

[A] compulsive literary crime-drama about love, hate, guilt, intolerance and the consequences of religious devotion. It’s a book that will stay with you.


Simmering resentments and long-held prejudices boil over in this beautifully realised evocation of small-town America. In Anna Bailey’s deft hands, brutal events are drawn so tenderly that your heart will break. I loved it.

Kate Riordan, author of The Heatwave

[A] stunning suspense novel - perfect for fans of Megan Miranda and Celeste Ng.

Library Journal

A mix of the Salem witch trials meets Gone Girl, this is an eerie, timeless slow burn of a book that's worth sticking with for the almost apocalyptic ending that will haunt you for weeks afterwards.

Woman's Own

A nuanced thriller that will haunt you long after you race through its pages, Tall Bones is a novel you'll be itching for your friends to read, just so you can discuss it.


Alice Lutyens
+44 (0)20 7393 4400
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Translation Rights
Melissa Pimentel
+44 (0)20 7393 4425
Email Melissa Pimentel