Hello, I'm Katherine Woodfine - author of the bestselling Sinclair's Mysteries, the Taylor & Rose Secret Agents series and lots of other children's books.


I was born in Preston and grew up in Lancashire. Below, you can see me practising my detective skills at an early age!

I’ve always loved books, and after spending my school days reading, writing plays, editing the school magazine and writing stories, I went to study English Literature at Bristol University and then at the University of Manchester.

My first job was working in a Waterstones bookshop and since then almost everything I've done has been connected to books in some way - including spending six years working for reading charity BookTrust on projects such as the Children’s Laureate, YALC (the UK’s Young Adult Literature Convention) and the Blue Peter Book Awards. I'm also one of the founders of children's books radio show and podcast Down the Rabbit Hole.

My first book, The Clockwork Sparrow was published in 2015 and was shorlisted for the Waterstones Children's Book Prize, longlisted for the Branford Boase Award and nominated for the CILIP Carnegie Medal. It's been followed by seven more titles about intrepid Edwardian detectives Sophie and Lil, with the final book about their adventures, Nightfall in New York publishing in 2021.

Most of my books are inspired by history, such as A Dancer's Dream illustrated by Lizzy Stewart, which tells the story of the first performance of the ballet 'The Nutcracker'. I've also written three books for Barrington Stoke's super-readable Little Gems series - Rose's Dress of Dreams illustrated by Kate Pankhurst, Sophie Takes to the Sky illustrated by Briony May Smith and Elisabeth and the Box of Colours illustrated by Rebecca Cobb - all of which are inspired by amazing real-life heroines from history. 

You can find more of my writing in several short story anthologies including Mystery & Mayhem, Make More Noise, Winter Magic and most recently, The Book of Hopes.

In 2017 I was selected as one of the Aarhus 39 - a selection of the best children's and young adult writers from all over Europe, aged 40 and under.

When I'm not writing I review children's books for the magazine The Week Junior and organise book-related events and projects. You can also find me chairing book events everywhere from Waterstones Piccadilly to the Hay Festival.


I live with my husband and daughter in Lancashire, close to an old castle. Apart from books, writing and history, I love art galleries, windswept walks, old films and cake. My all-time favourite book is I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith.