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Christopher J. Yates

Grist Mill Road is a dark, twisted, and expertly plotted Rashomon-style tale. In 1982, among the craggy rock cliffs, three friends - Patrick, Matthew, and Hannah - are bound together by a terrible and seemingly senseless crime. Twenty-six years later, in New York City living lives their younger selves never could have predicted, the three meet again - with even more devastating results.

Here is a triple helix of a story structure, a sharp-edged love triangle complete with an Atonement style revelation. Character-driven, gorgeously written and wrenching, Grist Mill Road exposes the poisonous resentments, sexual longings, and reservoirs of violence that roil just below the orderly surface of small town life. Like Yates' critically acclaimed Black Chalk, this follow up novel showcases the author's background as a professional puzzle-maker; this too is an "engrossing literary guessing game" one that will keep readers in suspense until the final page.

Christopher J. Yates was born and raised in Kent and studied law at Oxford University before working as a puzzle editor in London. His first book is Black Chalk, which was published by Harvill Secker in the UK, Picador in the US, Centrepolygraph in Russia, Eurasian in Taiwan, Ambo/Anthos in the Netherlands, and Baldini & Castoldi in Italy.

Available Rights

Language Territory Type Agency Client
German World Book Nicole Meillaud
Mohrbooks AG
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9. November 2017, quote
Russia: AST


9. November 2017, review
Yates follows his well-received debut, Black Chalk, with an edgy, intelligent thriller that explores the aftermath of a senseless crime. In 1982, 13-year-old Matthew Weaver ties Hannah Jensen, who's also 13, to a tree in the woods outside Roseborn, N.Y.,

Publishers Weekly, starred review

9. November 2017, review
Yates's (Black Chalk) sophomore novel is a fun-house mirror of a single, horrific incident that defines three lives. Patch, Hannah, and Matthew enter the New York woods in 1982 as young teens, and what happens there changes each of them irrevocably. The s

Library Journal

9. November 2017, review
An antihero in an Albert Camus novel ignored a dying child's plea for help and spent the rest of his days pounded by guilt. Toward the end he cried out to the little girl to come back, "and give me a chance to save both of us." That's the entire point of

Booklist, starred review

9. November 2017, review
A defining moment of violence inextricably links the lives of three young adults in Yates' (Black Chalk, 2015) psychological thriller."I remember the gunshots made a wet sort of sound, phssh phssh phssh, and each time he hit her she screamed. Do the math

Kirkus, starred review

9. November 2017, quote
The plot is darkly, intricately layered, full of pitfalls and switchbacks, smart and funny and moving and merciless; the characters are all that and more. This is a powerful exploration of how truth isn't a complete and immutable thing, or a pure force of

Tana French, author

9. November 2017, quote
Dark, intense, and disturbing, Christopher Yates'Grist Mill Road begins with a shock and keeps the suspense burning page after page. A thriller with imagination to spare. Highly recommended.

Krysten Ritter, author ofBonfire

9. November 2017, quote
Christopher Yates'Grist Mill Roadisa terrific thriller. A horrid childhood crime carried secretly to adulthood, with menace lurking around the corner, and guilt hanging heavy overhead. Alfred Hitchcock would have optioned the plotin the blink of his gimle

Jason Matthews, author

9. November 2017, quote
Anintricately craftednovel about adult lives forever changed by closely held childhood secrets. Grist Mill Road isa compulsive readthat will unsettle you from its first page and surprise you until its very last.

Jung Yun, author

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