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Susie Steiner: Author Of Manon Bradshaw Detective Novels Dies At 51

July 5, 2022

Novelist and former journalist Susie Steiner, best known for writing the Manon Bradshaw detective series, has died from a brain tumour aged 51.

Steiner wrote three DS Bradshaw books including 2016’s Missing, Presumed, which was shortlisted for the Theakston crime novel award and picked for the Richard and Judy Book Club.

It has sold 250,000 copies in the UK.

Marian Keyes led the tributes, writing: “Her books were absolutely wonderful, Manon Bradshaw was a great character.”

Steiner had previously been a journalist for 20 years, writing for The Guardian, Evening Standard, Daily Telegraph and The Times.

In May 2019, she was diagnosed with brain cancer, a grade 4 glioblastoma, and her website said she spent most of 2019 having treatment comprising six hours of brain surgery, chemo radiation, and six cycles of chemotherapy.

Her first novel, 2013’s Homecoming, was well received by critics. That was followed by Missing, Presumed, which was a Sunday Times bestseller and chosen as a standout book for The Guardian and Wall Street Journal.

The sequel, Persons Unknown, along with the third book in the DS Bradshaw series, 2020’s Remain Silent, were both longlisted for the Theakstons prize.

She told the Guardian in 2020 that she had written Remain Silent with a “nine-centimetre tumour pushing my brain over its midline. But I didn’t know about it”.

She was also registered blind after losing her eyesight to retinitis pigmentosa.

She wrote in the Independent in 2016: “My sight loss, which has begun to limit me only in the last five years, has accompanied an increase in my creative output as a novelist. The two seem intertwined, as if the less I can see of the world, the more I can focus inwardly.”

Following her death, her agent Sarah Ballard told the Guardian that Steiner’s “glorious talent as a writer was rooted in her deep appreciation of the undercurrents of human nature”, adding: “Her special insight made her not just a critically acclaimed and bestselling writer, but also a generous and sharply funny friend who will be missed by everyone who knew her.”

Her publisher, Suzie Dooré, told the newspaper: “Susie was an extraordinary person and a wonderful writer. Personally, I am proud to have also counted her as a friend, and will always remember and cherish her quick wit and brutal honesty, both attributes she was able to pass on to her series character Manon Bradshaw.

“A train trip to a festival with Susie was guaranteed to bring hilarity, oversharing, Percy Pigs and mini bottles of wine. She was truly unique, full of warmth and incredibly perceptive.”

Steiner leaves her husband and two children.

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