THE SECOND CUT - Scarlet Stiletto Award Winners, edited by Phyllis King

Review Written By
Karen Chisholm

Another excellent selection of award winning short stories from the Sisters in Crime Australia's annual Scarlet Stiletto Awards.  For the past 18 years the Australian Sisters in Crime have been awarding a range of prizes for short stories (the categories have shifted around over the years), and THE SECOND CUT is the (not all that surprisingly!) the second time that many of the prize winners have been compiled into a single volume and published.

Again, you'll find an interesting combination of known and published authors, and new and upcoming (hopefully to be published) authors.  One of the things that's particularly interesting about this collection is the authors have stepped outside what they are normally known for writing, heading into different territory completely.  The other thing that's particularly interesting is that this time there are multiple entries in the Verse category.  This particularly category was setup and is still sponsored by the estate of the wonderful Dorothy Porter, much missed Sister in Crime, and as anyone who ever came near me when her book EL DORADO was published, would know a huge writing hero of mine.  Because of the effect of that book I was particularly keen to read these entries in this collection - and there were no disappointments.

There are some fantastic entries in this book, and it was personally heartening to come across some with a decidedly rural bent, and whilst I can't really single out any stories, let's just say I've been a bit leery of handmade candle stalls at the local markets since reading TALLOW, and I have to confess to absolutely crying with laughter over COLD COMFORT (okay, so I grew up on a farm with a little grey Fergie and a rather "unpredictable" grandfather myself...).

As with the first collection, THE SECOND CUT covers a huge range of subject matters, contexts and styles.  The Scarlet Stiletto Awards are such a fantastic initiative and these publications are not just a logical extension, but a perfect adjunct.  They encourage our female writers (including up and coming junior writers), and they consistently unearth some incredibly clever story telling.

Year of Publication

The Second Cut features a thrilling selection of stories culled from the Scarlet Stiletto Awards held annually by Sisters in Crime Australia.

This sequel to the bestselling First Cut features the 1st Prize winners from 2007 – 2010, and a selection of category winners from the 17-year history of the Scarlet Stiletto Awards.

A superb collection of page-turning mysteries in which fabulous female protagonists solve – and sometimes perpetrate – all kinds of crimes. Featuring cops, killers, PIs, crooks and amateur sleuths, these award-winning stories will have you on the edge of your seat, will chill your blood and sometimes make you laugh out loud.

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