Latest Reviews

I've spent a silly amount of time driving recently, and these really work as a background to the endless kilometres.
Posted by Karen
I confess to having been a mad fan of Dave Warner's music. It makes me very happy that the stories he tells in his books are longer in form, but still so clearly about life as it happens in Australia.
Posted by Karen
Chris Whitaker's debut novel TALL OAKS garnered a lot of positive publicity and a CWA John Creasey New Blood Dagger award.
Posted by Karen
The Lone Child focuses on character development, imbued with sadness, longing, regret and loss. Reviewed at Newtown Review of Books
Posted by Karen
You have to admire any author who doesn't just create a profoundly unlikeable protagonist but then grants them full permission to be as ordinary a human being as they can possibly be.
Posted by Karen
A terrific thriller, FROM THE SHADOWS, is fast-paced and populated by extremely interesting characters embroiled in a clever story plot that twists, turns and sneaks around more than enough to keep the reader guessing until the end.
Posted by Karen
I forgot NOTHING BAD HAPPENS HERE was a debut novel as you'd never know it from reading it.
Posted by Karen
It's probably not going to come as any surprise to find that DON'T LET GO jumped up the reading queue as quickly as possible, because every novel from Michel Bussi I've read now has been clever, different and intriguing.
Posted by Karen

Recommendations

Chris Whitaker's debut novel TALL OAKS garnered a lot of positive publicity and a CWA John Creasey New Blood Dagger award.
A terrific thriller, FROM THE SHADOWS, is fast-paced and populated by extremely interesting characters embroiled in a clever story plot that twists, turns and sneaks around more than enough to keep the reader guessing until the end.
It's probably not going to come as any surprise to find that DON'T LET GO jumped up the reading queue as quickly as possible, because every novel from Michel Bussi I've read now has been clever, different and intriguing.
The re-examining of the murder of Charles Buhrman brings Josie and her family to the fresh attention of a voracious new content hungry generation who are keen for the thrill and less interested in the damage that was done to the two young children in the house at the time of the murder.
ALL OUR SECRETS is strongly voiced, has a great sense of place and character all round, and an excellent plot. It's an absolute gem.
A slow moving novel about loss; both its enormity and of how shocking it is to the grieving that life simply must go on, regardless of what has been unexpectedly and horrifically taken from them.
THE LAST TIME WE SPOKE will leave readers thinking about consequences long after the novel has come to an end.
"Now he must choose between exoneration and condemnation, justice and vengeance." Readers are all too often left wondering which one he gets to choose, and which one he deserves.

Latest Postings

Book Review
Coming not long after Steve Uhlmann and Peter Lewis’ Marmalade Files and hot on the heels of Tony Jones’ The Twentieth Man, Michael Brissenden, another ABC journalist, has penned a thriller.
Posted by Robert Goodman
Books
Posted by Karen
Books
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Book Review
Prepare the hot cocoa and grab all of the house cats as this is one of those books you are going to need to rug up for to absorb in a quiet space.
Posted by Andrea Thompson
Book Review
A few years ago, Adam Christopher had a fantastic idea based on a dare from a long dead author.
Posted by Robert Goodman
Book Review
THE DIRECTION OF OUR FEAR is such an interesting idea - multiple characters living separate lives, getting on with their day to day existences, moving through place and time without knowing each other, or even being aware that there will come that intersecting point ...
Posted by Karen
Book Review
PLEASE DO NOT DISTURB comes with a wonderfully evocative sense of place and people, delivered with an affectionate comic touch.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
THE LAST TRAIN is a really good novel for fans of crime fiction in general, and Asian crime in particular.
Posted by Karen
Books
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Blog entry
Fell over the first in the series via the Ned Kelly listings in recent years - particularly pleased to see a 2nd novel in the series now out.
Posted by Karen
Blog entry
From the weekend's pile - really liked the earlier one in this series.
Posted by Karen
Books
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Blog entry
From last week's reading pile.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
The death of Maria Turquand had all the ingredients that would have appealed to the salacious public forty years ago; a beautiful woman, gangsters, drugs and rock stars.
Posted by Andrea Thompson
Book Review
Pursued, bedded and betrayed by her husband the King, Anne Boleyn's story is equally as complex as it is tragic. Anne through both whim and circumstance comes to possess exactly the same ambitions as her bullish husband - to rule absolute, and to provide an heir to the English throne.
Posted by Andrea Thompson
Book Review
A take on a noir romp with stylised good cop / bad cop characters, humour is a huge part of GOOD COP BAD COP.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
Some promise shown here.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
THE ASSASSIN ON THE BANGKOK EXPRESS is the second book in a series sub-titled "The Honourable Assassin", the first (with that title) released in 2015.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
Whether or not this should be marketed as YA is debatable, but either way it is a great Scandi-crime novel that almost demands to be read in a single sitting.
Posted by Robert Goodman
Book Review
... weighted heavily on the romance side, with a tendency towards a showy style of descriptive text to reinforce the period setting.
Posted by Karen
Blog entry
The verdicts are in: new Kiwi voices dominate among 2017 Ngaios finalists
Posted by Karen
Blog entry
Announcement: 2017 Ned Kelly Award Shortlists
Posted by Karen
Book Review
Ten years of two families missing their two children of course takes its toll. One couple survives the aftermath of the kidnappings and the other does not. So what will happen now that only one of the two boys is coming home?
Posted by Andrea Thompson
Book Review
Something very clever is being mined from our collective pop culture psyche here, and that is the fascination we have with the last person standing. Plane crashes, shootings, natural disasters etc; it's the sole survivors that fascinate.
Posted by Andrea Thompson
Book Review
Jock Serong seems to determined to shine a light on every dodgy part of Australian culture.
Posted by Robert Goodman
Book Review
... while Gentill is returning to the world of Roland Sinclair, she has shown quite emphatically that she can leave Sinclair behind whenever she wants and go exploring in a wider literary landscape.
Posted by Robert Goodman
Book Review
The dizzy freedom of a night out without her young son has terrible consequences for first time mother Sally.
Posted by Andrea Thompson
Book Review
Many years have passed since Dr Jekyll suddenly left London society. Lawyer Mr Utterson, seemingly steadfast in his continued assistance to the absent Dr Jekyll, has been busy making plans. Lasting plans, and they include a lady’s affection.
Posted by Andrea Thompson
Book Review
BURN PATTERNS was a most unusual reading experience. Bet you any money, it leaves as many readers unsatisfied, as it does those keen for more.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
Coming at an eco-thriller from the point of view of the activists, RUBY AND THE BLUE SKY is part thriller, part exploration of "celebrity" culture, and part do good chick lit novel.
Posted by Karen
Blog entry
Started this one last night.
Posted by Karen
Blog entry
Second from this weekend's reading pile.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
The Twentieth Man is an incredibly assured debut novel and Jones has delivered a pacey and original historical thriller.
Posted by Robert Goodman
Book Review
The potential here is undoubtedly in plot imagining - the idea behind this is very intriguing, the over-the-top action very reminiscent of gung-ho thrillers, with some good twists and turns.
Posted by Karen
Books
Posted by Karen
Blog entry
Really enjoyed the first of this series, Through a Camel's Eye.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
Known for her Rowland Sinclair historical crime series and her YA Hero trilogy, Sulari Gentill delivers something very different with this new novel. Full review at Newtown Review of Books
Posted by Karen
Book Review
In 2005, the Police and Justice Museum in Sydney had an exhibition of police photographs from the early twentieth century. One of these that caught the eye of author Pip Smith was of a man called Harry Crawford, arrested for murder.
Posted by Robert Goodman
Book Review
A vengeance styled thriller, set in Asia, PAYBACK tackles sex-trafficking and child abuse head on.
Posted by Karen
Books
Posted by Karen
Book Review
When two young people go missing, it's first thought by the police that young love could be the reason why. Amaya and Kamal's respective families both had other plans for their future, and the control wielded over the lives of their children was both archaic and suffocating. Did the two leave their controlling families behind in order to map out their own lives? Or has someone taken them?
Posted by Andrea Thompson
Book Review
Well worth a look ... especially as a reminder that there is a world of difference between an autocrat and a strong leader.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
Called to attend a crime scene in his own apartment complex, Wolf is faced with a cadaver that is nothing like he or anyone else in his division has ever seen before.
Posted by Andrea Thompson
Blog entry
A slight change of setting - moving to Tokyo and a book by an American Professor of Literature and author resident in Tokyo.
Posted by Karen
Blog entry
I did some housekeeping over the weekend. The sort where you sweep all the books off the pile to be read and pluck out one that you really want to read. I did restack the pile again and promise I'm doing some catching up with badly overdue review books. But it was nice to get some tidying up done :)
Posted by Karen
Book Review
Hate it when a new book from a much loved series lingers too long on the reading pile simply because of competing priorities.
Posted by Karen
Books
Posted by Karen
Blog entry
One from the should have read this ages ago pile.
Posted by Karen
Books
Posted by Karen
Book Review
In 2016 the unpublished manuscript of Wimmera won the UK Crime Writers’ Association debut dagger – now it’s published and we can see why. Reviewed at Newtown Review of Books
Posted by Karen