A DEAD MOTHER FORCES ZOE TO RETURN HOME AND FACE A MORE EVIL MYSTERY
Ilove coming across a fabulous new Kiwi author. And Nikki Crutchley is definitely a talent. She writes crime thrillers that keep you reading late into the night, then leave you feeling too chilled to sleep.
Her latest, No One Can
Hear You, is set in a small New Zealand town called Crawton where young women keep disappearing. These women live on the fringes. They have few friends and no family, nobody to notice they are missing except one mentally ill man who is living rough and an old woman with dementia. When that woman, Lillian, is murdered, in a manner that makes it seem like suicide, her estranged daughter is forced to return to the hometown she fled from years ago.
There to bury her mother,
Zoe Haywood starts piecing together the clues Lillian left around the house and realises something is very wrong in Crawton. But who can she trust?
Zoe teams up with Faith, an old high school friend, to delve into the mystery, and the two quickly find themselves drawn into a seedy underworld with their lives in danger.
This has all the ingredients of a good whodunit: tension, twists, secrets and lies. It is dark stuff. But it also explores relationships and invokes smalltown life. It has a cast of realistic, rounded characters and a heroine worth hanging out with in the feisty but troubled Zoe.
It was self-published, so you might not find No One
Can Hear You in your local bookstore. Either ask them to order it in or head to the nikkicrutchley.com.
I suspect some readers are put off reading fiction from New Zealand authors because they assume it will be very literary and hard work. To be fair, in the past a lot of it was.
But we need to get over that now because writers like Nikki are proving that Kiwis can write crime fiction that is just as gripping and disturbing as thrillers by better-known international authors.
No One Can Hear You by Nikki Crutchley (Oak House Press, RRP $31.99)