Brought up in Kuala Lumpur, Felicia has always liked the idea of writing; but she didn’t know what to write about. After her primary degree, she worked in a lab in Germany, as a radioactive cell biologist, before gaining a graduate scholarship at Cambridge University.
Felicia continued to live in Cambridge after attaining her PhD in 2008, commuting to London to teach Crisis and Decision Making at LSE.
“I moved to London in 2015.”
Meanwhile Felicia wrote for the Economist and he Business Times.
“But I liked the idea of fiction, because it has the power to touch people and make them think about the world in a different way.”
The idea for the debut came to her in 2014, when she was practising the Tango in a dance studio.
“I thought, how could you solve a murder if you only remember yesterday? I worked out the plot on the dance floor, and finished the novel 16 months later.”
It sold immediately, sparking a bidding war.
Who is Felicia Yapp.
Date of birth: November, 1980 in Kuala Lumpur
Education: She left Kuala Lumpur on a scholarship to take A levels in Singapore. Imperial College, London; Bio-chemistry. Cambridge University M Phil, then PhD in History. (And a half-blue in competitive ballroom dancing.)
Home: Greenwich, London.
Family: Fiancé, Alexander Plekhanov.
The Day Job: Fulltime writer. “I’m still affiliated to LSE.”
In Another Life: “I’d love to be a professional ballroom dancer.”
Favourite Writers: Kazuo Ishiguro. “I was inspired by Never Let Me Go.” Matt Haig: F Scott Fitzgerald; Patricia Highsmith.
Second Novel: “It’s a prequel, to be called, Today.”
Top Tip: “Be curious. Embrace the unknown, and keep asking questions about the world, and its people.”
www.feliciayap.com Twitter: @feliciamyap
The Debut: Yesterday. Wildfire: €14.71. Kindle: €7.00
In this dystopian tale, the world is divided into two classes of people; Monos, who remember the events of yesterday, and Duos, who can also remember the day before. To overcome this deficiency, everyone keeps a diary.
When the police call, telling Claire that a body has been found – and it’s clear they suspect her husband, Mark, how is she to learn the truth?
The Verdict: A clever, complex tale which makes you think about memory in a new way.
Published in The Irish Examiner on 30th September.
© Sue Leonard. 2017