An extraordinary, unputdownable debut novel exploring trauma, connection, and our cultural obsession with dead girls.
'A murder mystery with a difference. Richly descriptive…a confident and courageous entry into the world of fiction and one that will earn Bublitz many fans.' - Canberra Times
'Beautiful, brilliant and strangely joyous … will have you in its thrall from its powerful first page to its superb conclusion.' Rose Carlyle, author of Girl in the Mirror
'Addictive and utterly captivating. I couldn't put it down.' Sarah Bailey, author of Where the Dead Go
'This astonishing debut turns the traditional crime story on its head … Darkly funny, deeply insightful and completely heartbreaking.' Petronella McGovern, author of Six Minutes
'The most wonderful book. Unusual, beautiful, feminist, gripping, deserves to win prizes. I loved it so much'. Marian Keyes, author of Grown Ups
This is not just another novel about a dead girl.
When she arrived in New York on her 18th birthday carrying nothing but $600 cash and a stolen camera, Alice Lee was looking for a fresh start. Now, just one month later, she is the city's latest Jane Doe, an unidentified murder victim.
Ruby Jones is also trying to start over; she travelled halfway around the world only to find herself lonelier than ever. Until she finds Alice's body by the Hudson River.
From this first, devastating encounter, the two women form an unbreakable bond. Alice is sure that Ruby is the key to solving the mystery of her life - and death. And Ruby - struggling to forget what she saw that morning - finds herself unable to let Alice go. Not until she is given the ending she deserves.
Before You Knew My Name doesn't ask whodunnit. Instead, this powerful, hopeful novel asks: Who was she? And what did she leave behind? The answers might surprise you.
'A wake-up call, beautifully written and unique feminist exploration of the crime fiction genre.' R.W.R. McDonald, author of The Nancys
'Unpredictable, devastating and original … marks the arrival of a compelling new voice … Thought-provoking and challenging.' Karen Viggers, author of The Lightkeeper's Wife
'Beguiling, heartbreaking and tender. Jacqueline Bublitz is a beautiful writer and in Alice Lee, she has created a vivid and sparkling narrator who mesmerised me from the very first page and still won't let me go.' Suzanne Leal, author of The Teacher's Secret
'An unputdownable debut - striking, moving, gripping throughout and so sharp on the things that unite us' Elizabeth Kay, author of Seven Lies
Jacqueline 'Rock' Bublitz is a writer, feminist, and arachnophobe, who lives between Melbourne, Australia and her hometown on the west coast of New Zealand's North Island. She wrote her debut novel Before You Knew My Name after spending a summer in New York, where she hung around morgues and the dark corners of city parks (and the human psyche) far too often. She is now working on her second novel, where she continues to explore the grand themes of love, loss and connection.
Crime & Mystery
Longlisted CWA Gold Dagger for Crime Novel of the Year 2022 AU; Longlisted Matt Richell Award for New Writer of the Year, ABIA Awards 2022 AU; Longlisted General Fiction Book of the Year, ABIA Awards 2022 AU; Shortlisted MUD Literary Prize 2022 AU; Longlisted Dublin Literary Award 2022 IR
Allen & Unwin
Allen & Unwin
Paperback - B format
Thriller / suspense