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Murder in Utopia by Philip McLaren(link is external) - Federal, N.S.W. : Cockatoo Books, 2008. [Our New Books - LibraryThing(link is external)]

There's absolutely no way in this world that a new Philip McLaren crime fiction book will sit long unread in this house and besides, a cold wet windy weekend means a book in front of the fire!

From the Blurb:

Doctor Jack Nugent never liked looking at dead people and he hated touching them.  In spite of this, he acquired detailed knowledge as to what happened to human remains.  In the small community of Utopia, in the middle of Australia, he'd picked up skills he simply never could have learned by studying in New York:  Aboriginal ritual killings hardly ever happened there.

Opening Lines:

The moon has always featured prominently in my life.  My name is Carla Kunaardi.  I learned that on my birthday - 26 October, 1959 - Soviet scientists had photographed the dark side of the moon for the first time.  It still causes me to smile that from the beginning of time, humans had never seen the dark side, ever, until I was born.

BOOK DETAILS
BOOK INFORMATION
ISBN
9780646503820
Year of Publication
BLURB

Doctor Jack Nugent never liked looking at dead people and he hated touching them.  In spite of this, he acquired detailed knowledge as to what happened to human remains.  In the small community of Utopia, in the middle of Australia, he'd picked up skills he simply never could have learned by staying in New York:  Aboriginal ritual killings hardly ever happened there.

Perhaps it's also worth repeating the author's note:

This is a work of fiction.

There is a real place named Utopia, it's situated in the red-desert centre of Australia.  This story is not about that place, nor is it about any real people.  I found the irony irrisistable:  imagine naming a place called Utopia, a place so impoverished, so desolate.

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Submitted by Karen on Mon, 12/07/2010 - 07:13 pm