I live in Oxfordshire with my husband, the poet Ian Pindar, and our two children. Our son was diagnosed with autism in 2011, about a month after I landed my first book deal.
Gosh but @AlisonLMercer's After I Left You is bringing back my student years in a bittersweet rush! May need a private comparing of notes.
— Patrick Gale (@PNovelistGale) October 6, 2015
My debut novel, Stop the Clock, was published by Black Swan in August 2012. My second novel, After I Left You, also published by Black Swan, came out in ebook in January 2014 and was published in paperback in July 2014. I’m represented by Judith Murdoch.
@AlisonLMercer enjoyed both your books on holiday this week. You’ve so closely depicted the ups and downs of women of our generation. Eek…
— Zillah Watson (@zillahwatson) April 18, 2014
After I Left You is published in Germany by Diana Verlag. The title of the German edition is Und dann, eines Tages. A Portuguese language edition will be published by Novo Conceito Editores.
I’m going to be speaking at North Cornwall Book Festival 2015 – October 23-25. So much looking forward to it!
The back story…
I decided I wanted to be a writer pretty much as soon as I learned the word (and I am still finding out what it means – lifelong process!) I wrote my first novel when I was at primary school.
I went on to study English at University College, Oxford, and, like the characters in Stop the Clock, I did a diploma in journalism at Cardiff University. I worked as a reporter at The Stage, where I was teased by Stewart Lee, admired a pre-Hollywood Cillian Murphy and interviewed several Spice Girls tribute bands. I went on to be a features writer at the WI magazine, where I witnessed the birth of the nude calendar phenomenon, and then spent several years at Nursery World, writing about childcare and education.
All brilliant experience for an aspiring novelist interested in what women’s lives are like now, and their families, friendships and experiences at work. I started writing fiction again in my late 20s, and got down to it in earnest after I’d had my first baby and moved to Oxfordshire.
— Mary Baker (@Chapter1Woodley) May 16, 2014
About After I Left You
Anna has not been back to Oxford since her last summer at university, seventeen years ago. She tries not to think about her time there, or the tightly knit group of friends she once thought would be hers forever. She has almost forgotten the fierce sting of betrayal, the heartache, the secret she carries around with her, the last night she spent with them all.
Then a chance meeting on a rainy day in London brings her past tumbling back into her present, and Anna is faced with remembering the events of that summer and the people she left behind. As Anna realises that the events of their past have shaped the people they’ve all become, hope begins to blossom for what the future could hold…
Responses to After I Left You
“A lovely absorbing read, so evocative of student life. Alison Mercer really captures the passion of falling in love for the first time.” (Alice Peterson, author of Monday to Friday Man)
“Alison Mercer has expertly spun an engrossing story about love, secrets and second chances.” (Tamar Cohen, author of The Mistress’s Revenge)
“A tender and romantic story of love and friendship, elegant and engrossing, beautifully told” (Louise Douglas, author of The Secrets Between Us)
“Beautifully written and full of intelligent, emotional and interesting characters . . . will stay with you long after you finish the final captivating chapter” (Daily Mail)
“A wonderfully romantic read that’ll have you hooked from the offset” (OK!)
“A deeply moving tale of facing the past so you can live in the present” (Star)
Meet Lucy, Tina and Natalie, twenty-something friends who are all negotiating the risky business of being grown-up.
Lucy knows exactly what she wants: her marriage to be a success, her children to be perfect, and to be the ultimate home-maker.
Tina knows what she wants too: her journalism career to take off and to see her name as a byline in a national newspaper… and the illicit affair she’s started leaves her free enough to follow her dreams.
Natalie just wants to be happy – happy with the boyfriend she’s dated since college, happy with the job she’s drifted into, happy with a life she thinks is enough – but is it really?
Ten years later, all three women have the lives they thought they wanted. But somehow, reality isn’t quite as neat and clean-cut as their dreams…
Responses to Stop the Clock
“Effortlessly readable and sharply realistic, this is grown-up chick-lit at its very best.” (Closer)
“Funny and moving, this is a fab debut from Alison Mercer.” (new!)
“Mercer has a satirical eye which she puts to good effect in describing such cornerstones of middle-class life as private antenatal classes and bitchy newspaper columnists. A funny, promising debut.” (Daily Mail)
So enjoyed After I Left You by @AlisonLMercer. Really gripping & so intensely nostalgic it send me plunging back into my own life.
— Samantha Ellis (@SamanthaEllis27) April 1, 2014