Kimberley Chambers really is the East End’s version of Shakespeare. Not only is she one of the country’s top-selling crime fiction writers but she is also a real down to earth, a straight-talking lady that pulls no punches.
Today the Havering Daily had the exclusive opportunity to talk to her about her life and her latest book ‘Queenie‘ that comes out tomorrow.
Born in Dagenham and now living in Hornchurch, Kimberley has always been an east end girl. “I left school at 16 years old and went to work on the Roman Road market. I’ve worked all the east end markets but the Roman was really rocking back then. I loved it, I was earning good money and doing a job I really enjoyed.
“Sadly the council stopped the parking near the market and that killed it off so I began working as a DJ in pubs and clubs and did that until I was 29 years old,” she tells us.
From there Kimberley went on to be a minicab driver, working evenings to earn better money.
“It was at the age of 38 years old that I realised that I was actually sick of my life. I realised that I had to make changes as I actually couldn’t stand what I was doing. That’s when I decided to write a book.”
Since then Kimberley Chambers has gone on to be one of the country’s finest crime writers, whose books regularly top the charts as best sellers.
“My first book Billie-Jo took me a year to write. I was working nights as a minicab driver and writing during the day.
“I had bumped into Martina Cole one evening as I was staying at a caravan site and we had a few laughs and as I staggered back to my caravan I thought to myself I’ve always been a good storyteller so why not write a book? To be honest I didn’t think I’d get past chapter 1, but once I did it became easier and easier.”
Now Kimberley is a household name whose books have sold world wide and whose characters have became a part of our lives. Whether you love her or hate her, everyone has something to say about Queenie.
Kimberley’s first hardback book Payback under Harper Collins went straight in at number 1, and tomorrow sees the eagerly awaited release of Queenie.
Kimberley’s books appeal to most and I frequently hear her books discussed with quotes such as “that Queenie is tough, blimey what a character.”
The strength of her books are the amazing characters she has introduced into our lives. “My characters are strong, alongside a gritting crime theme and there is always humour to be found as well,” says Kimberley.
“My characters are memorable and I grew up in an area where I knew a lot of villains and I moved in those circles.“
Kimberley’s characters have made such an impact on readers that her books are soon to be made into a television series starring Sheridan Smith as Queenie.
Kimberley is a lady with a very witty sense of humour that makes its marks in her fantastic books. Her books leave you gripped and up all night reading them (truly you can’t put them down until the end!)
She will be signing books at Waterstones in Romford this Saturday at 1pm and Sunday at Lakeside Waterstones. ‘Queenie’ will hit the shops tomorrow in all the major supermarkets and bookstores.