Alumna Penny launches second book and seeks to champion disability representation

Alumna Penny Batchelor releases new book

Penny Batchelor recently released her second thriller novel, Her New Best Friend, which follows the release of her first novel, My Perfect Sister, in 2020.

In the new novel, mother-of-two Audrey is horrified when during a moment of distraction in the park, her pram with baby Wilfred in rolls down the hill and into a pond. Fortunately for her, Claire Jones is nearby and rescues Wilfred, soothing Audrey and daughter Antonia with coffee and cake in a nearby café. No harm is done.

However, the frightening experience dents Audrey’s confidence and she replays the events over and over, convinced she can’t have forgotten to put the brake on. To make matters worse she keeps spotting a shadowy figure everywhere she goes and becomes sure that someone is stalking her.

The book is a twisting tale of intrigue and deception – and of what happens when your worst nightmare comes true.

Penny said:

“As an author I'm aiming to champion disability representation in fiction because I grew up hardly ever seeing anyone like myself, a wheelchair user, in novels.

“There are two disabled characters in Her New Best Friend, but the story isn't 'about' disability, I'm ensuring that the one in five disabled people in the UK are represented in literature.”

Penny, who graduated with a degree in Information and Library Management in 2005, also writes a monthly column for The Bookseller on disability in publishing issues.

You can find out more about Penny on her website.

Penny is hosting a free online book launch on 19 August at 8pm.