Caitlin Davies

Caitlin Davies

After training as an English teacher she moved to Botswana in 1989, where she became a journalist and worked for the country’s first tabloid newspaper the Voice. As later editor of the Okavango Observer she was arrested for ‘causing fear and alarm’, and received a journalist of the year award. Many of her books are set in the Okavango Delta, where she lived for 12 years, including the acclaimed memoir Place of Reeds (2005).

After returning to London she wrote education and careers features for the Independent, and has written for most national newspapers.

Her main interest today is historical fiction and the buried lives of women from the past. The Ghost of Lily Painter (2011) is based on the true story of two Edwardian baby farmers, while Family Likeness (2013) concerns the fate of children born to GI fathers.

She also writes social histories, such as Taking the Waters:  swim around  Hampstead Heath (2012) and Camden Lock and the Market (2013).

She is currently writing Downstream: a social history of swimming the River Thames, as well as the fictional life story of a ‘champion lady swimmer of the world.’

In 2013 she was selected as a Royal Literary Fund Fellow in London.

Read more about her work at or follow her on @CaitlinDavies2.