Aussie crime wave
No doubt you’ve heard of Jane Harper’s debut bestselling crime novel The Dry (Pan). It has added the accolade of crime and thriller ‘book of the year’ at the recent British Book Awards and also been nominated for the 2018 Anthony Awards. Of the British Book Awards win, Harper said, ‘It’s wonderful that the publishing industry in the UK has responded so enthusiastically to an Australian story and I’m delighted that my novel has reached so many readers overseas.’ Those readers might want to follow up their Australian crime run with Emma Viskic’s Resurrection Bay (Echo), which has been longlisted in two categories in the UK Crime Writers’ Association’s Dagger awards. It is one of 10 books longlisted for the Gold Dagger award for the best crime novel of the year, and also garnered a longlisting for the John Creasey New Blood Dagger for the best crime novel by a first-time author. In Australia, the book won the 2016 Ned Kelly Award for best first novel, and also won in several categories at the 2016 Davitt Awards. Looking further ahead, keep an eye out for Sherryl Clark’s unpublished manuscript ‘Trust Me, I’m Dead’, which is among the works longlisted for the Debut Dagger award. It follows a 43-year-old woman who returns to Melbourne in the wake of the murder of her drug-addict brother, and is quickly entangled in the mystery surrounding his life and death. And speaking of crime from the Antipodes, the longlist for this year’s Ngaio Marsh award for New Zealand crime fiction has been announced.
In other awards news, the longlist for the 2018 Miles Franklin Literary Award, one of Australia’s most influential book prizes, was announced in May. Peter Carey’s A Long Way from Home (published under Penguin Random House’s Hamish Hamilton imprint) and Taboo by Kim Scott (published under Pan Macmillan’s Picador imprint) are the sole representatives of multinational publishers on the 11-title list. The remaining nine longlisted book are all from small and independent Australian publishers: No More Boats (Felicity Castagna, Giramondo), The Life to Come (Michelle de Kretser, A&U), The Crying Place (Lia Hills, A&U), The Last Garden (Eva Hornung, Text), Some Tests (Wayne Macauley, Text), Storyland (Catherine McKinnon, Fourth Estate), Border Districts (Gerald Murnane, Giramondo), From the Wreck (Jane Rawson, Transit Lounge), and The Restorer (Michael Sala, Text). The winning author, who will receive $60,000, will be announced in August.