Saturday, October 28, 2017

Celebrating in Christchurch

Last night brought an announcement, during a special WORD Christchurch event in New Zealand, of which books and authors have won the 2017 Ngaio Marsh Awards. The recipients include the first woman ever to capture the coveted prize for Best Crime Novel.

“Each of our winners this year is a remarkable storyteller who uses crime writing as a prism through which to explore broader human and societal issues,” says Craig Sisterson, the founder and judging convenor of this annual contest. “When we launched in 2010 we wanted to highlight excellence in local crime writing, beyond traditional ideas of puzzling whodunits or airport thrillers. Our 2017 winners emphasize that broader scope to the genre, and showcase the inventiveness and world-class quality of our local storytellers.”

Below are the winners and other finalists in three categories.

Best Crime Novel: The Last Time We Spoke, by Fiona Sussman
(Allison & Busby)

Also nominated: Pancake Money, by Finn Bell (e-book); Spare Me the Truth, by C.J. Carver (Zaffre); Red Herring, by Jonothan Cullinane (HarperCollins); and Marshall’s Law, by Ben Sanders (Allen & Unwin)

Best First Novel: Dead Lemons, by Finn Bell (e-book)

Also nominated: Red Herring, by Jonothan Cullinane (HarperCollins); The Ice Shroud, by Gordon Ell (Bush Press); The Student Body, by Simon Wyatt (Mary Egan); and Days Are Like Grass, by Sue Younger (Eunoia)

Best Non-Fiction: In Dark Places, by Michael Bennett (Paul Little)

Also nominated: The Scene of the Crime, by Steve Braunias (HarperCollins); Double-Edged Sword, by Simonne Butler with Andra Jenkin (Mary Egan); The Many Deaths of Mary Dobie, by David Hastings (AUP); and Blockbuster!, by Lucy Sussex (Text)

To obtain more information about the Ngaio Marsh Awards, this year’s victors or finalists, or comments from the judges, send an e-mail message to Craig Sisterson at

READ MORE:Wonka’s Whipple-Scrumptious Fudgemallow Delight: a 9mm interview with Fiona Sussman,” by Craig Sisterson
(Crime Watch.)

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