The Crime Writers' Association

Caitlin Davies

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Caitlin Davies is the author of six novels and seven non-fiction books, many of which have a criminal theme.

The Ghost of Lily Painter (Hutchinson, 2011) was based on the true story of two Edwardian baby farmers, while Bad Girls: The Rebels and Renegades of Holloway Prison (John Murray, 2018) was the first comprehensive history of Europe’s most infamous female jail. It was nominated for the Orwell Prize for Political Writing, 2019.

Caitlin started her writing career as a human rights reporter in Botswana, during which she was twice arrested and put on trial. She is a trained teacher, who has worked in a variety of settings including schools, universities, prisons and community centres. She has taught creative writing for the Arvon Foundation, and is currently a tutor with City Academy and City Lit. She is also a mentor with Story Board,, which offers online consultations for writers of both fiction and non-fiction.

Caitlin’s latest book is Queens of the Underworld, published by The History Press on October 14th, 2021; a journey into the lives of female crooks from the 17th century to today.

‘A riveting dive into the criminal underworld and the women who queened it there’ – Helena Kennedy QC

‘What a brilliant piece of research; pieced together with compassion, heart and understanding’ – Maxine Peake

‘Caitlin Davies displays that rare talent for history and storytelling without judgement’ – Shami Chakrabarti

‘Refreshingly, these women are leaders of their trades, not victims’ – Rachel Holmes



Books by Caitlin Davies

  • The Ghost of Lily Painter

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  • Bad Girls: The Rebels and Renegades of Holloway Prison

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  • Queens of the Underworld: A Journey into the Lives of Female Crooks

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