Philippa Stockley is a twice-Booker-nominated novelist, award-winning journalist, exhibiting painter, and wide-ranging designer of everything from calligraphy to book jackets and illustrations to clothes, stage-costumes and interiors. Her upcoming fifth book, PAINT & MAKE (Pimpernel Press, Spring 2023) draws on decades of experience to create a unique and inspiring book on painting and making things from the home with a historic and eco edge. Every project is in her own home; a listed Georgian cottage in Whitechapel that she restored from derelict.
Her most recent novel Black Lily (Pimpernel 2018) is a fast 17th-century epic entirely set in London; dark and poisonous, with cross-sex appeal. The Evening Standard said ‘it would make terrific TV.’ Award-winning novelist and TV presenter Andrew Martin said ‘…the best-written bodice-ripper ever.’ Country Life wrote ‘to be gobbled up greedily’.
Her latest non-fiction book, Restoration Stories, on old London houses, was published to critical acclaim in 2019 by Pimpernel.
Stockley’s first bestselling novel The Edge of Pleasure (LittleBrown, Harcourt Brace, was inspired by André Gide’s The Immoralist and Frederick Forsyth’s The Day of the Jackal. Her second, Murderous Liaisons, first published as A Factory of Cunning (LittleBrown, Harcourt Brace), is a sequel to Les Liaisons Dangereuses. The Spectator called it ‘very filthy’. It has been taught in a French university. Both were the most reviewed novels of their publication month and Booker- nominated.
Stockley writes strikingly hard-edged, sensuous stories without a moral core, pithy and often cruel, which appeal to men and women alike. Settings, interiors, and clothing are powerfully evoked. Her short stories have been published in Arete magazine.
A national-award-winning journalist; critic and reviewer, and an exhibiting portrait- and still-life painter, her scholarships include the Churchill; Oxford (English); the Courtauld Institute (art-historical clothing history). For five years to 2016 she was a Royal Literary Fund Fellow at the Courtauld, then an RLF Lector 2018-2021.
Author photo credit: David Butler