‘C.J. Daugherty ratchets up the tension expertly; she plants suspicion and weaves webs of deceit in a way that readers of Le Carré would recognise.’ Books for Keeps


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New Night School Prequel

Coffee Flower


I’ve just posted a brand new Night School prequel on Watt Pad

Called The Day the Lights Went Out, the prequel is set five years before the start of Night School One. Isabelle has been headmistress for one year. Carter is eleven years old.

And Nathaniel is about to make his presence known for the first time.

This story introduces a new character you will meet again in later Night School books. It also explains once and for all why there are no computers at Cimmeria Academy.

The first half of the story is up now! The second half will go up in the same place next Friday.

I hope you like it!

Read The Day the Lights Went Out on WattPad.





New Prequel Coming Friday!

Breaking news

THIS FRIDAY, 11 April, I will be putting up a new free PREQUEL!

It is set 5 years before the start of Night School 1. Carter West is 11 years old. Allie hasn’t yet committed her first crime. And Nathaniel is about to make his presence known.

It’s called The Day the Lights Went Out.

I’ll be releasing it first on WattPad as an exclusive. Later, I’ll put it up here, on my website.

The prequel is in two parts. The first will be released this Friday and the second half will be released next Friday.

So, please join me on Friday. I’ll bring the coffee.


Night School US Covers


I’m thrilled to share with you the US/Canada covers for the Night School books for books 2-4!

It’s a brand new look for the series, and I absolutely LOVE IT.

We’ll eventually re-cover Book 1 too, and then everything will be beautiful and matching and the world will be a better place.

What do you think? Which one of the three covers is your FAVOURITE??

Sayin’ ain’t doin’

Rusty James


Meet Rusty James. The male inspiration for Allie Sheridan.

Here’s the thing. I get asked all the time what my ‘life philosophy’ is. Or what my motto is. My answer is always the same.

‘Sayin’ ain’t doin’.’

It has been my motto since I was 18 years old.

It comes from Rumble Fish, the book by SE Hinton, without whom I believe there might be no young adult genre of books today. She’s a brilliant writer, and she creates beautiful characters. Particularly male characters actually. She really understands teenage boys.

I didn’t discover Rumble Fish through the book, though – I discovered it from the film. If you have never seen Rumble Fish go out right now and watch it. It’s black and white and heartbreaking. The writing is amazing.

And I got my motto from it. From Rusty James. The coolest boy in Oklahoma.

When I first started writing Night School, I imagined Allie as kind of a female version of Rusty. Wounded but strong. Always fighting. Never sure of who she really is. Wanting to be loved.

And always, always sceptical.


US Readers: Get Ready

may man

America and Canada I have this to say: MAY 9, 2014. As in THIS MAY. Night School 2 is coming your way at LAST.

And that’s not all.

You have been the most patient readers EVER. But the wait is over.

Night School 3 will come out in the US and Canada just THREE WEEKS LATER.

And then there’s this:

Night School 4 will come out in the US ONE DAY after its UK release in June. OMG.

It’s all about to happen.

I’ll be revealing the US covers soon. I cannot WAIT for you to see them.

Night School WINS Book Prize!

Salisbury Book Award

Here I am, KISSING my prize ribbon. I am PATHETIC.


I am thrilled to announce that yesterday Night School won the Salisbury Schools Book Prize!

This award means so much to me because it is chosen by readers themselves at schools throughout the beautiful town of Salisbury here in England.

I want to say a huge thank you to the librarians and teachers at Salisbury schools! All the books in the contest were excellent, and the students read each of them. It was a fabulous contest and I’m so happy they picked Night School!

Here are some photos from the day.

Salisbury Book prize 1

Look at my face! I look so stunned.

I really didn’t expect to win, so it was such a wonderful surprise to find out the readers chose Night School!

Salsbury book awards 2

Some of the wonderful Salisbury voters

I stayed to sign everyone’s books and hand out bookmarks. These students were just really fabulous to talk to. 

Salisbury Book Awards 3

The students asked brilliant questions.

The question and answer session was great as the students asked really good questions. There were a  number of dedicated writers among them, so we talked about the complicated process of creating a book.

The competition

The competition

All in all, it was such a great day and I’m so proud of this award! Big LOVE to Salisbury!