Latest Reviews

Sometimes you start reading a series book about a favourite character, and really start to wonder if the author is annoyed with them, subconsciously punishing them for being too popular, or just enjoying applying the thumb screws for a change.
Posted by Karen
Find out where it all began for George Smiley.
Posted by Gordon Duncan
A debut police procedural from Melbourne based, ex-Ballarat dweller, JM Simpson, A BODY OF WORK makes good use of both of those locations. (Review republished / book republished).
Posted by Karen
You have to hand it to our Rebus. No one sidelines this particular Scotsman. If there’s something going on in his town, retired or not, Rebus still manages to place himself in the thick of it.
Posted by Andrea Thompson
Could you walk the along the East Coast of Australia from Gippsland to Sydney? In 1797 seventeen shipwreck survivors set out on this journey, only three survived. One of the men has a diary which tells their tale, Preservation tells a much darker tale.
Posted by Gordon Duncan
A really good choice for fans of legal thrillers in particular, and a good one for fans of general Australian thrillers as well.
Posted by Karen
NO ONE CAN HEAR YOU has moments of great insight and clarity into the nature of small towns, small communities, and the people who can slip under the radar in those situations.
Posted by Karen
There's a good sense of the place, the climate, the local residents and the terrain in INTO THE FOG. It's a real strength of this novel - this is a place that Wallace obviously knows well and the idea that kids could simply vanish up there makes sense, and is well supported by the god awful weather that's being experienced.
Posted by Karen

Recommendations

Find out where it all began for George Smiley.
Could you walk the along the East Coast of Australia from Gippsland to Sydney? In 1797 seventeen shipwreck survivors set out on this journey, only three survived. One of the men has a diary which tells their tale, Preservation tells a much darker tale.
If you discovered the murdered body of your married lover on a secluded beach would you hope no-one was watching and run?
While there was little doubt after her debut, The Lost Man shows Harper cementing her place as a major, important talent in Australian crime fiction.
Ted Lewis's Jack's Return Home, the book which Get Carter, arguably one of the greatest gangster films of all time, was based upon.
Well paced out, populated by flawed but approachable characters, set in a location that doesn't feel manipulative or convenient, GREENLIGHT is about crime, greed, money, influence, bad decisions and human frailty and nastiness.
... this is good rural-noir. It comes from the place and the people that it's written about and it's got the authority, and the touch that comes from living in the world that it's describing.
Completing the AustCrimeFiction trifecta, my turn to read this excellent debut novel.

Latest Postings

Book Review
Author Michalia Arathimos has Greek-New Zealand heritage which is strongly reflected in her novel AUKATI. Set in New Zealand, this is a crime novel based around the scourge that is fracking.
Posted by Karen
Books
Posted by Karen
Book Review
Australian Rural Crime novels are the new big thing, and Scrublands is the one that everyone is talking about.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
Feeling very much like an advertisement for gourmet South Australia with a slightly incongruous crime fiction element (wouldn't that turn potential visitors off...) THE POPEYE MURDER by Sandra Winter-Dewhirst is the first Rebecca Keith mystery.
Posted by Karen
Books
Posted by Karen
Books
Posted by Karen
Book Review
Lynne Vincent McCarthy’s debut novel Lonely Girl is a thriller with a bit of a gender swap. Gone is the femjep woman kept in a basement. Instead, McCarthy turns the tables on this tired trope and in this psychological thriller puts the woman in charge.
Posted by Robert Goodman
Book Review
TAKE ME IN is an immersive read of guilt, deflection and the tangled webs we weave when everything goes wrong in our lives at once.
Posted by Andrea Thompson
Books
Posted by Karen
Books
Posted by Karen
Book Review
How quickly your life can change from one of everyday normality to one of outright horror.
Posted by Andrea Thompson
Book Review
The Seventh Cross is not only an important historical novel it is a timely one. It shows how a whole society can be turned by the lure of fascism.
Posted by Robert Goodman
Book Review
In the close quarters of an overcrowded ship packed with English, Irish and Scottish emigrants, disease waits.
Posted by Andrea Thompson
Book Review
When Eliza Carmody returns to the small seaside town she grew up some things have changed, and a lot hasn't. Often the way when you return to the small town of your youth.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
He never once plays the "I was badly treated / it wasn't me" card. He was what he was, and he is now what he's made himself.
Posted by Karen
Blog entry
There's a LOT of buzz going around about this one.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
Only Killers and Thieves is an accomplished debut. Howarth manages to shine a stark light on a disturbing and often ignored aspect of Australian history – the systematic ‘dispersal’ of Aboriginal people to allow for the spread of agriculture.
Posted by Robert Goodman
Book Review
Keeping it all close and personal, GIVE ME YOUR HAND is a carefully crafted work that drip feeds dread directly into the veins.
Posted by Andrea Thompson
Blog entry
My round up of the 2018 Ned Kelly Awards shortlist is now at Newtown Review of Books
Posted by Karen
Book Review
THE NOWHERE CHILD is pointed commentary on fundamentalism of all persuasions, and a good reminder that the past doesn't always go quietly.
Posted by Karen
Blog entry
Slight (okay extreme) change of pace.
Posted by Karen
Blog entry
So I read this one over the weekend but it's another that a review will come out in the next day or so, in the meantime ... read it.
Posted by Karen
Blog entry
One that I finished over the weekend - review to come asap.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
Cop-turned novelist, Nathan Blackwell (true identity hidden due to covert police operations) has written a debut novel, THE SOUND OF HER VOICE, which is intense, unsparing, realistic, brutal and will stay with the reader for a long time.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
An immersive and convincing novel about secrets and survival set in one of the harshest of environments – an Australian outback town during an extended drought.
Posted by Andrea Thompson
Book Review
Powerful and poetic, life affirming and heart wrenching. Welcome again to the dark world of the private detective Charlie Parker.
Posted by Andrea Thompson
Book Review
THE OTHER WIFE is the latest bittersweet entry in an excellent series that progressively takes a little bit more of your heart with each encounter.
Posted by Andrea Thompson
Book Review
Kiwi-Irish author Julie Parsons book THE THERAPY HOUSE is an intricate pscyhological observation, interweaving current day crime with Irish history to great effect.
Posted by Karen
Blog entry
The Frankston Murders, which has been just been republished by Clan Destine Press in a revised edition to commemorate the 25th anniversary of a seven-week killing spree that traumatised families and the community.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
Crime Fiction set in the art world is a little mined area of interest, and in Katherine Kovacic's novel, THE PORTRAIT OF MOLLY DEAN, it's gold.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
From this account it seems that Mollie Dean was a beautiful, clever, talented young woman who was keen to make a mark and achieve something in her life. Her life was taken from her in the most brutal of manners because somebody wanted to control that. Who did that and why, readers will have to decide for themselves.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
Steve Cavanagh’s Eddie Flynn legal thrillers have been one of the best thing to happen to the courtroom drama in a long time.
Posted by Robert Goodman
Blog entry
The Ned Kelly Awards are on Sunday 26th August in Melbourne at the Toff in Town
Posted by Karen
Blog entry
Catching up on some of the true crime books stacked about the place.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
THE TRIALS OF MINNIE DEAN is a beautifully constructed, extremely thought-provoking and moving book. It is one that I've now revisited many times since my initial reading.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
The world sure as hell needs something to laugh at, and it could use a lot more caper novels.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
Set in the early twentieth century in mannered and beautiful Dunedin, New Zealand there are plenty of similarities between the stories of Mr Mancini and the delightfully idiosyncratic Hercule Poirot.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
Easy reading, with a casual, almost chatty style and an engaging central character, DEATH ON D'URVILLE ticks the boxes you'd want on something that's leaning towards the romantic suspense side of the genre.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
RED HERRING is dryly funny in places, deliberately dark and sparse, and an absolute page turner. It's a combination of history, mystery and reality set in something almost cinematic in quality, with heaps of dark places, a few light touches and some extremely good characters.
Posted by Karen
Blog entry
Following on from Gideon Haigh's A Scandal in Bohemia, a factual account of the life and fate of Molly Dean, now The Portrait of Molly Dean, a fictional look back and Molly's life from the point of view of independent art dealer Alex Cayton. A fabulous read.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
THE RUIN is so confidently written with fully rounded characters that we are assured of some great reading from this series in the future.
Posted by Andrea Thompson
Book Review
In The Other Wife Robotham once again demonstrates why he is not only one of the best thriller writers in Australia but one of the best thriller writers in the world.
Posted by Robert Goodman
Books
Posted by Karen
Blog entry
This year’s longlist for the Ned Kelly Awards announced by the Australian Crime Writers Association celebrates the novels of well established crime writers and talented newcomers.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
... with this expansion of her world, it feels like Gemma Woodstock might be with us for a while.
Posted by Robert Goodman
Book Review
There's much in this book that's confronting and discomforting, and it's not straight forward reading, but it's worthwhile reading, digging into 1970's Australian rural life, dysfunctional families, and adult behaviour that has lasting consequences.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
LIFTING is one of those books that is charming, slightly eccentric, sad, happy, and wonderfully engaging.
Posted by Karen
Books
Posted by Karen
Books
Posted by Karen