Grant McKenzie's new thriller SWITCH (Bantam Transworld UK) has just been released in Australia and is now on the shelves.

The Blurb of the Book:

"How far would you go to save the ones you love?

Would you commit murder?

Sam White is a failed actor turned night security guard who walks the empty corridors of a local mall, dreaming of a life he never achieved. But when he arrives home one morning to find his house a burnt-out shell with the bodies of his wife and daughter inside, he knows he would do anything just to have his old life back. His prayers are answered when he receives a phone call from a man who claims that the bodies removed from the fire don’t belong to his family. His wife and child are alive and Sam can still save them. But first, he must complete a few 'simple' tasks.

Pursued by the police, Sam joins forces with Zack Parker a plastic surgeon whose life has been ripped apart by the same sadistic kidnapper. As they race to save Sam's family, they are plunged into the labyrinthine underworld of Portland, Oregon, and the dark smuggling tunnels that run beneath the city.

But time is running out. To save his family, Sam must consider whether he is prepared to make the ultimate sacrifice ..." 

In time for the release, Grant was kind enough to answer a few questions for me:

1.  Was there something that triggered the development of the storyline of SWITCH?

There was no specific incident, just a quirk of the mind that makes me ponder and play with What If scenarios. In this case, I was driving home from my newspaper job in the dark of night and, as a husband and father, I pondered what the most horrible thing to see would be when I turned the corner of the street where I lived. Once I had that scenario (the house in ashes, the bodies of my loved ones being carried out) I pondered what would stop me from going insane and killing myself? The answer was: Hope. A phone call that says the bodies belong to someone else, my family is still alive. And then I had to ask: Why?

2.  Do you worry that people will not want to sit next to you at dinner parties if your imagination can dream up these sorts of scenarios?

Actually, it's been my experience that the people with the darkest imaginations are some of the nicest people. We get all our anger and fears out in our prose, so we can be perfectly normal in public. But if you happen to get on our bad side, well, you may not want to read the next book 

3.  What sort of readers do you think the book will appeal to? 

Fans of fast-action mystery thrillers will certainly want to dive in. If you like the stand-alone novels of Harlan Coben, Linwood Barclay, Greg Iles, Robert Crais or Dean Koontz, you'll certainly enjoy Switch. And although it's set on a much smaller, less global scale, I would also suggest that fans of Matthew Reilly, James Rollins and Clive Cussler would get an adrenaline rush out of its fast-paced storytelling.


Feedback On SWITCH:

Author Lee Child calls SWITCH: “A terrific little-guy-in-big-trouble thriller . . . moving at warp speed.” Author Ken Bruen says, “Think Harlan Coben on speed with a heart breaking compassion that will literally have you biting your nails . . . (a) nerve jangling wondrous debut ” And author David Hagberg says, ‘Switch is not merely good, it's damned good."

After its Australian debut, it will launch in the UK in July and Germany in August.

You can find more info at:

Year of Publication

How far would you go to save the ones you love? Run five traffic lights in a row? Rob a liquor store? Commit murder?

Sam White lives to provide for his family. But everything changes in an instant when he arrives home to find his house burnt to the ground, his family seemingly caught in the blaze. Distraught, Sam receives a phone call from a psychopath informing him that his family was spared from the inferno, but to get them back he must follow the rules set out by their kidnapper. Rules that are anything but simple, anything but legal, and possibly deadly.

As Sam risks everything to find his family, he learns that another man, Zack Parker, had a family previously targeted by the same madman. Together these two desperate men plunge into the dark, labyrinthine underworld of Portland, Oregon in order to save their loves ones before the clock runs out. It's a race against time to discover the identity of the kidnapper and save their families before it's too late.

A breakneck thriller from a true master of suspense, SWITCH places two ordinary men against unspeakable odds, keeping the reader guessing until the last page is turned.

Add new comment

This question is for testing whether or not you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.

Submitted by Karen on Fri, 05/12/2008 - 07:15 pm