Claire Fullerton


Award-winning author of four novels, including her latest, Little Tea

Claire Fullerton is the author of Little Tea, the five-time award winning Mourning Dove, Dancing to an Irish Reel, and A Portal in Time. Her work has appeared in numerous magazines, and her novella, Through an Autumn Window appears in the book, A Southern Season. She is represented by Julie Gwinn of the Seymour Literary Agency and lives in Malibu, California. Learn more about Claire on her website and blog.

Read our review of Little Tea here.


Little Tea (2020)

Mourning Dove (2018)

Dancing to an Irish Reel (2015)

A Portal in Time (2013)

Biggest literary influences:

Pat Conroy, Ron Rash, Donna Tartt, Anne Rivers Siddons

Last book read:

Crescendo by Allen Cheney and Julie Cantrell

The book that changed your life:

The Prince of Tides by Pat Conroy. This sins-of-the-father family saga showed me the possibilities of first-person narration and how deep a writer can go with language, description and story.

Favorite literary character:

Shepherd Bondurant from Anne Rivers Siddons’s Peachtree Road. His aerial view of Atlanta’s gentry while being a member of the tribe was brilliant.

Currently working on:

I just finished the manuscript of a book titled The Insiders. I am currently promoting my book, Little Tea.

Words to live by:

“Mastering the ambiguity of life is the hardest task any of us will ever be called to do.” Finley, in Mourning Dove, said this line, and I wrote it because I live by it.

Advice for aspiring authors:

Be in it for the sheer joy of the pursuit. In writing, there is no “there” to get to. There is only the path, and it is as individual a path as there are individual writers.


There are currently 168 reviews of Mourning Dove on Amazon, which pleases me. They can be found here.

“Clare Fullerton skillfully draws us into a lost world of Southern traditions and norms where past tragedies cast long, dark shadows on present-day lives, and no one ever truly escapes.” —Cassandra King Conroy, New York Times bestselling author of The Sunday Wife and The Same Sweet Girls

“Claire Fullerton once again delivers an emotional, lyrical tale and proves she’s a writer to watch.” —Julie Cantrell, New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of Perennials

“Style and substance are the two necessary ingredients any book must have. This book exemplifies both. I was charmed and delighted by the author’s descriptive abilities. Her use of language, metaphors, turns of phrase kept me turning each page. She can make a table sound interesting. I now know what it was like to be a Southern Belle. There’s a lot going on — more than meets the eye, which is why this is so engrossing. The reader is dropped into the life of the upper crust, replete with a big back story and complicated family life. What characters they are. Posey, the mother, is all about refinement and a survivor. Finley, the bother of narrator and protagonist Millie, is a compelling, complicated, charismatic enigma bearing a resemblance to Holden Caufield. Then there is the Colonel; let’s just say he doesn’t come across as a nice guy. There are other supporting characters and they all move the story along. I enjoyed reading every sentence, and some of them are downright extraordinary and wise. Claire Fullerton is a bright new star. I’ve read her last two books, and they are great, but this one is a masterpiece.”

—Neville Johnson on Mourning Dove