Latest Reviews

It is a sometimes violent, sometimes dangerous, sometimes poetic and insightful debut Australian novel.
Posted by Robert Goodman
Written by an author who has spent some time in Pentridge as a worker / teacher this is one of those books that's really fascinating when it's getting into the nitty gritty of life behind bars ...
Posted by Karen
The follow up to a fascinating book Australia's Most Murderous Prison, AUSTRALIA'S TOUGHEST PRISONS: INMATES tells the story of a number of people in prison - for a change not all of the usual role-call of participants that show up in these sorts of books.
Posted by Karen
The historical context not only highlights how attitudes have changed since the 1940s but how the attitudes of those times are still not far from the surface.
Posted by Robert Goodman
There's room in Australian crime fiction for two lone-wolf anti-hero types, and Wyatt's got some serious competition now.
Posted by Karen
While Underground Airlines shares much of its messaging with recent books and films about slavery it also joins a list of provocative alternate histories such as Fatherland and The Yiddish Policeman’s Union which use crime fiction tropes to explore and expose their worlds.
Posted by Robert Goodman
BLOOD WEDDING is gripping and very cleverly constructed.
Posted by Karen
Needing something that would be reliably good recently, TRACES OF RED was just the thing as Paddy Richardson is a particularly talented writer of psychological thrillers.
Posted by Karen

Recommendations

Michel Bussi is a renowned crime fiction writer and winner of many awards in his native France, BLACK WATER LILIES being the second of his books translated into English.
As much as I'd love to say that if you're a new reader to this series than just get on with it, it's one that you really have to read in order.
For a cricket obsessed reader, fond of the assertion that test cricket is a metaphor for life, THE RULES OF BACKYARD CRICKET made me wonder about that just for a moment.
There is a very good reason for all the buzz around about The Dry, another great debut thriller from an Australian writer. Review at Newtown Review of Books
Pufferfish is one of my all time favourite Australian Crime Fiction identities. He's taciturn, reticent and often recalcitrant. He's frequently obtuse, often slightly grumpy, addicted to strong espresso and liquorice all-sorts and finally, he's back.
It's dark, it's classic noir, it's very Australian and it's about as pitch perfect as you can get.
For reasons that escape me, Paul Cleave doesn't seem to have the profile, or the world-wide awareness that he absolutely and utterly deserves.
Inspired by the true events surrounding an unsolved murder, Dark Fires Shall Burn is set in Sydney’s Newtown in the aftermath of World War II. - Full review at Newtown Review of Books

Latest Postings

Blog entry
It was, at best, mildly damp in these parts over the weekend (unlike some parts that got hammered) but the hell with it - got some reading done anyway.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
Extremely engaging, requiring the reader to really pay attention, one of the best things about THE FALLING DETECTIVE was the way it made this reader really regret missing the first book in the series.
Posted by Karen
Blog entry
Reading this one for http://newtownreviewofbooks.com.au and thinking a lot about the experiences of women from previous generations.
Posted by Karen
Blog entry
Had a bit of a free-range around the Ned Kelly list while waiting for himself to finish one of the true crime entrants we got hold of recently ... which I'm looking forward to reading.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
Set in Australia, but with a decidedly American feel to it, LETHAL IN LOVE is a serialised novel in six parts. Fascinating idea and one that I've always wondered why somebody hasn't done.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
If you've read the blurb for CLINCH and formed some conclusions about style, and outcome in your mind, then it's likely you got close in some things and miles away in others.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
THE BLOOD ON MY HANDS is a very personal story, told by Shannon O'Leary, recounting a childhood that truly could be said was hellish.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
The first thing to understand about Hideo Yokoyama’s epic police procedural Six Four is that it is not a crime novel in the traditional sense.
Posted by Robert Goodman
Book Review
The Le Fanu series from Brian Stoddart is one of those extremely elegant combinations of mystery fiction and historical lesson that also provides huge entertainment for readers.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
What a little gem AMPLIFY turned out to be. A debut novel from journalist Mark Hollands, introducing musical impresario Billy Lime and his world of sex, drugs and rock and roll.
Posted by Karen
Books
Posted by Karen
Blog entry
Something from the very different indeed pile. Swedish, noir, set in 1930.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
A quick review of the blurb to this book will give potential readers a very good feeling for the style of the novel overall.
Posted by Karen
Books
Posted by Karen
Book Review
Facts wrapped up in fictional expansion, THE AMAZING MRS LIVESEY tells quite a tale of the life and times of Miss Ethel Swindells (aka lots and lots of other names)
Posted by Karen
Blog entry
Step away from the New Zealand and Australian piles at the moment for a f2f bookclub book.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
It's an interesting idea for a debut novel - the knowing swapping of identities and the consequences from there.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
Set in Melbourne, Jasper Wolf's debut crime fiction novel has a serial killer targeting policewomen who all have very similar physical characteristics.
Posted by Karen
Blog entry
Eurovision weekend is always a good one in these parts, although having something good to read on the side helps. This debut is quite a find.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
THE SECRET CHORD is a story of an ancient King in ancient times thus it absolutely demanded a magisterial narrator.
Posted by Andrea Thompson
Blog entry
I've been wandering around in the Ned Kelly Submission list a bit recently - will be returning back to the Best Crime list asap as there's a few books on it I've yet to read as well.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
A lot of fun to read, PROHIBITED ZONE was one of those books that this reader just could not put down.
Posted by Karen
Blog entry
You knew this would be late didn't you?
Posted by Karen
Blog entry
As I'm working my way through all 6 episodes of this - a combined mention :)
Posted by Karen
Books
Posted by Karen
Blog entry
Packaged as a series of novellas (episodes), Lethal in Love is a romantic suspense police story with a serial killer hunt at it's heart.
Posted by Karen
Books
Posted by Karen
Book Review
There's so much potential in this novel that you really cannot help but hope it's either the beginning of a good new Australian series, or at least the heralding of yet more crime fiction from John Dale.
Posted by Karen
Books
Posted by Karen
Books
Posted by Karen
Book Review
It's nearly impossible to "review" a book like THE STING simply because the subject matter is so horrific.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
MURDER IN MT MARTHA is a fictional story, inspired by an unsolved 1953 real-life murder in the Mornington Peninsula suburb of Mt Martha.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
Set within the hipster world of inner Melbourne lane-ways, cafes and bright young things, JINX is the debut crime fiction novel from local musician and writer Hugh McGinlay.
Posted by Karen
Blog entry
I will admit this is one from the absolutely intrigued me pile - so it has jumped up a little, but I'm regarding it as a treat read.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
A Dying Breed is an intelligent thriller set in present day Afghanistan.
Posted by Robert Goodman
Book Review
Much like its titular magazine, The Travelers is a whirlwind journey that takes readers to some of the world’s most desirable places.
Posted by Robert Goodman
Book Review
The Mystery of a Hansom Cab, written in the mid 1880s, was a world-wide publishing phenomenon. The story of its publication deserves a book like Blockbuster!. Reviewed at Newtown Review of Books.

Posted by Karen
Books
Posted by Karen
Book Review
THE JADED KIWI, a debut thriller shows promise, delivered as it is, with a slightly tongue in cheek, very New Zealander sort of sense of humour, style and language.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
A solid entry point to a new world, WHO'S AFRAID won't having you checking the shadows as you read - this book is not that graphic or terrifying - but it will have you cheering for Tommi as she stoically decides that her life is to be only onwards and upwards from here.
Posted by Andrea Thompson
Book Review
Excellent insight into how the Catholic Church were aided and abetted by others in power to cover up the appalling crimes of the likes of John Day.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
The balance between plot and characters is spot on, the action unrelenting and the battle between good and bad believable and highly entertaining.
Posted by Karen
Blog entry
About this time of the year I start madly trying to catch up with the Ned Kelly longlists. The ongoing quest is to manage to read the whole list!
Posted by Karen
Books
Posted by Karen
Blog entry
Final from a long weekend where a little more socialising than reading occurred.
Posted by Karen
Blog entry
2nd from the long weekend's reading, and in New Zealand.
Posted by Karen
Blog entry
Read over the long weekend - the latest in a series which is mystery focused, but rich with fascinating historical insight.
Posted by Karen