New eBook Fiction in October

This month’s additions to Overdrive showcase the changing role of the hero. For traditionalists, we have T.H. White’s The Once and Future King, while those with a taste for grittier protagonists can browse several new detective series, including the award-winning A Rising Man. And if you don’t like heroes at all? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered, too – the events in the Booker-nominated His Bloody Project are described by an entire community. To start a quest of your own, just sign in here.

Overdrive cover Birds Without Wings, by Louis de Bernières
“Set against the backdrop of the collapsing Ottoman Empire, Birds Without Wings traces the fortunes of one small community in south-west Anatolia, a town in which Christian and Muslim traditions have co-existed peacefully for centuries – until war is declared and the peaceful fabric of life is threatened with destruction. Epic in sweep, intoxicating in sensual detail, it is an enchanting masterpiece.” (Adapted from the Overdrive description)

Overdrive cover Sweetbitter, by Stephanie Danler
“22-year-old Tess has come to New York to take on her destiny. After she stumbles into a coveted job at a renowned restaurant, we spend the year with her as she learns the punishing, privileged life of a backwaiter, on and off duty. She’s pulled into the thrall of two other servers—a handsome bartender she falls hard for, and an older woman whose connection to both young lovers is murky, sensual and overpowering. These two will prove to be Tess’s hardest lesson of all.” (Adapted from the Overdrive description)

Overdrive cover The Portable Veblen, by Elizabeth Mckenzie
“A laugh-out-loud love story with big ideas – and squirrels. Can squirrels speak? Do snails scream? Will a young couple, newly engaged, make it to their wedding day? Will their dysfunctional families ruin everything? Will they be undone by the advances of a very sexy, very unscrupulous heiress to a pharmaceuticals corporation? Is getting married even a remotely reasonable idea in the twenty-first century? And what in the world is a ‘Veblen’ anyway?” (Adapted from the Overdrive description)

Overdrive cover Dirt Road, by James Kelman
“Murdo, a teenager obsessed with music, dreams of a life beyond his Scottish island home. His dad Tom has recently lost his wife and is terrified of losing control of what remains of his family. Both are in search of something as they set out on an expedition into the American South. As they travel they encounter a new world and we discover whether the hopes of youth can conquer the fears of age.” (Adapted from the Overdrive description)

Overdrive cover His Bloody Project, by Graeme Macrae Burnet
“A brutal triple murder in a remote northwestern crofting community in 1869 leads to the arrest of a young man by the name of Roderick Macrae. There’s no question that Macrae is guilty, but the police and courts must uncover what drove him to murder. A story ingeniously recounted through the accused’s memoir, trial transcripts and newspaper reports, His Bloody Project is a riveting literary thriller, and was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize.” (Adapted from the Overdrive description)

Overdrive cover A Rising Man, by Abir Mukherjee
“Captain Sam Wyndham, former Scotland Yard detective, is a new arrival to Calcutta. Desperately seeking a fresh start after his experiences during the Great War, Wyndham has been recruited to head up a new post in the police force. But with barely a moment to acclimatise, he is caught up in a murder investigation that will take him into the dark underbelly of the British Raj. The start of an atmospheric and enticing new historical crime series.” (Adapted from the Overdrive description)

Overdrive cover The Last Days of Night, by Graham Moore
“New York, 1888. A young lawyer named Paul Cravath takes a case that seems impossible to win. Paul’s client, George Westinghouse, has been sued by Thomas Edison over a billion-dollar question: Who invented the light bulb and holds the right to power the country? The task facing Cravath is daunting, and the stakes are immense: the winner of the case will illuminate America.” (Adapted from the Overdrive description)

Overdrive cover The Once and Future King, by T. H. White
“T.H. White’s masterful retelling of the Arthurian legend is an abiding classic. The Once and Future King contains all five books about the early life of King Arthur (The Sword in the Stone, The Witch in the Wood, The Ill-Made Knight, The Candle in the Wind and The Book of Merlyn). White brings to life the major British epic with brilliance, grandeur, warmth and charm.” (Adapted from the Overdrive description)

Overdrive cover Jake’s Long Shadow, by Alan Duff
“The third volume in the hard-hitting, best-selling Once Were Warriors trilogy. The millennium has changed but have the Hekes? Where are they now? Son Abe who has rejected violence but violence finds him; Polly, as beautiful as her sister Grace, who committed suicide; the gang leader, Apeman, who killed Tania, what’s prison like, does it change a man? And then there’s Jake Heke, casting his long shadow over everyone.” (Adapted from the Overdrive description)

The latest Fiction Newsletter

Welcome to the latest Fiction Newsletter where we have collected three titles from this month’s fiction recent picks as an appetiser. This month’s ‘Other Genres’ selection features New Zealand writers. We hope that you will find some wonderful reading from amongst all this new fiction, no matter what genre you prefer.

Library News

Contemporary fiction

A wide range of genres were included in this month’s selection of new Contemporary Fiction. The following three are examples of this with historical, translated and futuristic novels chosen for this month’s newsletter.

Syndetics book cover Field service / Robert Edric.
“Morlancourt, Northern France, 1920.In the aftermath of the world’s bloodiest conflict, a small contingent of battle-worn soldiers remains in France. Captain James Reid and his men are tasked with the identification and burial of innumerable corpses as they come to terms with the events of the past four years. The stark contrast between the realities of burying men in France and the reports of honouring the dead back in Britain is all too clear. But it is only when the daily routine is interrupted by a visit from two women, both seeking solace from their grief, that the men are forced to acknowledge the part they too have played.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)
Syndetics book cover The Mandibles : a family, 2029 – 2047 / Lionel Shriver.
“In 2029, the United States is engaged in a bloodless world war that will wipe out the savings of millions of American families. Overnight, on the international currency exchange, the “almighty dollar” plummets in value, to be replaced by a new global currency, the “bancor.” In retaliation, the president declares that America will default on its loans. “Deadbeat Nation” being unable to borrow, the government prints money to cover its bills. What little remaining savings are been rapidly eaten away by runaway inflation .The Mandibles have been counting on a sizable fortune filtering down when their ninety-seven-year-old patriarch dies. Once the inheritance turns to ash, each family member must contend with disappointment, but also, as the U.S. economy spirals into dysfunction, the challenge of sheer survival.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)
Syndetics book cover Six four / Hideo Yokoyama ; translated from the Japanese by Jonathan Lloyd-Davies.
“For five days in January 1989, the parents of a seven-year-old Tokyo schoolgirl sat and listened to the demands of their daughter’s kidnapper. They would never learn his identity. They would never see their daughter again. For the fourteen years that followed, the Japanese public listened to the police’s apologies. They would never forget the botched investigation that became known as ‘Six Four’. They would never forgive the authorities their failure. For one week in late 2002, the press officer attached to the police department in question confronted an anomaly in the case. He could never imagine what he would uncover. He would never have looked if he’d known what he would find.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

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Graphic novels

Guaranteed for diversity of theme, artwork and genre, the Graphic Novel collection never fails to entertain and fascinate readers. Deciding on just three as a temptation for readers is always difficult.

Syndetics book cover 365 days / by Julie Doucet.
“A year in the life of a world-renowned artist. This visual journal, starting in late 2002, is an idiosyncratic collision of her various creative interests, wherein personal narrative, collage, and drawing begin to tell the story of her pursuits into printmaking and beyond, chronicling her maturation as a mid-career artist and her fluid extension into a broader arts community.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)
Syndetics book cover Beverly / by Nick Drnaso.
“A darkly funny portrait of middle America seen through the stunted, numb minds of its children. Connected by a series of gossipy teens, the modern lost souls of Beverly struggle with sexual anxieties that are just barely repressed and social insecurities that undermine every word they speak. A group of teenagers pick up trash on the side of the highway, flirting, preening, and ignoring a potentially violent loner in their midst. A young woman experiences a traumatic incident at the pizza shop where she works and the fallout reveals the racial tensions simmering below the surface. Precisely and hauntingly recounted, each chapter of Beverly reveals something new and yet familiar, about the world in which we live.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)
Syndetics book cover Rosalie Lightning : a graphic memoir / by Tom Hart and Rosalie Lightning and Leela Corman and the residents of New York City, Gainesville, Florida, New Mexico, and Hawaii, as well as various singer-songwriters, film directors, actors, animators, comic artists, donors, lovers and friends.
“Cartoonist Tom Hart’s New York Times bestselling is a touching and beautiful graphic memoir about the untimely death of his young daughter, Rosalie. His heart-breaking and emotional illustrations strike readers to the core, and take them along his family’s journey through loss. Hart creatively portrays the solace he discovers in nature, philosophy, great works of literature, and art across all mediums in this expressively honest and loving tribute to his daughter.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

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Mysteries

The three translated novels included in this month’s selection of new Mystery Fiction have been chosen for this newsletter. Do check the complete list of selections for other new mysteries by some very talented writers.

Syndetics book cover The silent dead / Tetsuya Honda ; translated by Giles Murray.
“When a body wrapped in a blue plastic tarp and tied up with twine is discovered near the bushes near a quiet suburban Tokyo neighborhood, Lt. Reiko Himekawa and her squad take the case. The victim was slaughtered brutally, his wounds are bizarre, and no one can figure out the “what” or the “why” of this crime. Reiko makes a discovery that leads the police to uncover eleven other bodies, all wrapped in the same sort of plastic. Only a few of the bodies are identifiable and those that are have connection to each other. The only possible clue is a long shot lead to a website spoken only in whispers on the Internet, something on the dark web known as “Strawberry Night”.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)
Syndetics book cover Stalker / Lars Kepler ; translated from the Swedish by Neil Smith.
“A video-clip is sent to the National Criminal Investigation Department. Someone has secretly filmed a woman through her window from the garden. The next day she is found dead after a frenzied knife-attack. The police receive a second film of another unknown woman. There is no way of identifying her before time runs out. When her husband finds her he is so traumatized that he cleans the whole house and puts her to bed. He may have seen a vital clue, but is in such an extreme state of shock that the police are unable to question him. Psychiatrist Erik Maria Bark is called in to hypnotize him but what the man tells him under hypnosis leads Erik to start lying to the police. If the lights are on, a stalker can see you from outside. But if the lights are off, you can’t see a stalker who is already inside the house.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)
Syndetics book cover The dying detective / Leif G.W. Persson ; translated from the Swedish by Neil Smith.
“Retired Chief of the National Crime Police and Swedish Security Service Lars Martin Johansson has just suffered a stroke. He is paying the price for a life of excess – stress, good food and fine wine. With his dangerously high blood pressure, his heart could fail at the slightest excitement. In the hospital, a chance encounter with a neurologist provides an important piece of information about a 25-year-old murder investigation and alerts Lars Martin Johansson’s irrepressible police instincts. Lars Martin Johansson is determined to solve the atrocious crime even from his deathbed.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

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Science fiction/fantasy

This month’s selection of new Science Fiction and Fantasy novels included five debut novelists, all bound to have readers eagerly waiting their next publications. We have chosen new work from three very popular, veteran writers for this newsletter.

Syndetics book cover War factory / Neal Asher.
“The second book in the Transformation series. Thorvald Spear, resurrected from his death over a hundred years earlier, continues to hunt Penny Royal, the rogue AI and dangerous war criminal on the run from Polity forces. Beyond the Graveyard, a lawless and deadly area in deep space, Spear follows the trail of several enemy Prador, the crab-like alien species with a violent history of conflict with humanity. Blite, captain of a bounty hunting ship, hands over two prisoners and valuable memplants from Penny Royal to the Brockle, a dangerous forensics entity under strict confinement on a Polity spaceship that quickly takes a keen interest in the corrupted AI and its unclear motives. (Adapted from Syndetics summary)
Syndetics book cover The seascape tattoo / Larry Niven and Steven Barnes.
“Aros of Azteca and Neoloth-Pteor are the deadliest of enemies: Swordsman and Sorcerer, locked in mortal combat, who have tried to kill each other more times than either can count. But when the princess Neoloth loves is kidnapped, there is only one plan that offers any hope of rescueand that requires passing off the barbarian Aros as a lost princeling and infiltrating the deadliest cabal of necromancers the world has ever seen. They cannot trust each other. They will betray or kill each other the first chance they get. But they’re all each other has.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)
Syndetics book cover Age of myth / Michael J. Sullivan.
“This is the first in a proposed five book series five-book series. Since time immemorial, humans have worshipped the gods they call Fhrey, truly a race apart: invincible in battle, masters of magic, and seemingly immortal. But when a god falls to a human blade, the balance of power between humans and those they thought were gods changes forever. Now only a few stand between humankind and annihilation: Raithe, reluctant to embrace his destiny as the God Killer; Suri, a young seer burdened by signs of impending doom; and Persephone, who must overcome personal tragedy to lead her people. The Age of Myth is over. The time of rebellion has begun.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

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Other genres

The feature of this month’s Other Genres category is New Zealand fiction. Included in this month’s newsletter selection are new novels from two of New Zealand’s most talented, popular writers.

Syndetics book cover The quiet spectacular / Laurence Fearnley.
“Loretta is a school librarian, who embarks on compiling The Dangerous Book for Menopausal Women while waiting to collect her son from after-school activities. Chance is a teenager, who discovers an unusual creative outlet to offset the strain of her controlling mother. Riva is the founder of a wetlands sanctuary, who is seeking a way to fulfil her promise to her dying sister to do something ‘absolutely spectacular’. Within a clearing in the woods by a lake there is a den, a secret sanctuary and eventual meeting place for all three women.”(Adapted from Syndetics summary)
Syndetics book cover All day at the movies / Fiona Kidman.
“Life isn’t always like it appears in the movies. In 1952, Irene Sandle takes her young daughter to Motueka. Irene was widowed during the war and is seeking a new start and employment in the tobacco fields. There, she finds the reality of her life far removed from the glamour of the screen. Can there be romance and happy endings, or will circumstances repeat through the generations? Each subsequent episode in this poignant work follows family secrets and the dynamics of Irene’s children. The story doesn’t just track their lives, but also New Zealand itself as its attitudes and opportunities change and reverberate through the decades.”(Adapted from Syndetics summary)
Syndetics book cover The case of the missing body / Jenny Powell.
“The Case of the Missing Body is the true and unusual story of Lily, who has no sense of her body. She has struggled with the effects of this her whole life. Desperate to try anything to ‘be normal’, a nevertheless skeptical Lily agrees to begin work with her physiotherapist in a gymnasium. One extraordinary day, working in the gym, Lily discovers she has shoulder blades. All her life she has thought people only felt their heads, with thoughts trailing along in and behind them. Now she has shoulder blades. There is nothing easy about what is to follow. Neither Patrick (the physiotherapist) nor Lily could have predicted it. But with help from professionals, the writer of this beautiful, moving memoir becomes her own detective, searching for clues to help her find her own body.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

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New ‘Other Genres’ for August, this month featuring New Zealand fiction

New Zealand fiction features in this month’s ‘Other Genres’ category, with some great reading selected. Included are several historical, urban suspense, and modern relationship novels. Highly recommend is Laurence Fearnley’s tenth novel titled, The quiet spectacular.

Syndetics book coverThe agency / Ian Austin.
“Dan Calder is an ex Brit and ex policeman looking for a fresh start in a new country but still carrying the baggage of failed relationships and a depressed, repressed past. He chose New Zealand because it was as far as he could get from his old life but did not take into account the universal six degrees of separation is no more than two or three in the land of the long white cloud. The Agency provides a service like no other and New Zealand is the ideal location to find a new client. When Calder first encounters it by sheer chance, his life instantly changes and before long others are depending on him too. Engaged in a deadly game with an unknown foe; this was not the new life Dan Calder planned for himself but now at stake is the ultimate reward; his own salvation.” (Adapted from book cover)

Syndetics book coverThe salted air / Thom Conroy.
“What happens when grief draws you to your partner’s married brother? 28 year-old Djuna is without a foothold. The suicide of her partner has left her derailed and casting about for the joy she fears may be gone for good. Her parents’ relationship has disintegrated, her family home is occupied by Burmese refugees, and she is drawn to the one man she must reject. In pursuit of a roving father and a renewed sense of belonging, Djuna wanders from Wellington to the natural beauty of New Zealand’s remote East Cape.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Scarlet & Magenta / Lindsey Dawson.
“In the 1880s, misbehaving wives were asking for trouble. Building a raw Bay of Plenty town was hard enough without free-thinking females upsetting local society. Violet comes to Tauranga from London with a scandalous past and an aching heart. She befriends a kindred spirit, Anna, and catches the eye of footloose Rupert, rival and rowing mate of Anna’s husband. In pioneer towns, it doesn’t do to speak your mind or seek unseemly delights. Angry words are soon flying in banks and bedrooms, with reputations and marriages at risk. There are secrets to keep and lost loved ones to find.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe quiet spectacular / Laurence Fearnley.
“Loretta is a school librarian, who embarks on compiling The Dangerous Book for Menopausal Women while waiting to collect her son from after-school activities. Chance is a teenager, who discovers an unusual creative outlet to offset the strain of her controlling mother. Riva is the founder of a wetlands sanctuary, who is seeking a way to fulfil her promise to her dying sister to do something ‘absolutely spectacular’. Within a clearing in the woods by a lake there is a den, a secret sanctuary and eventual meeting place for all three women.”(Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverA briefcase, two pies and a penthouse : a novel / by Brannavan Gnanalingam.
“In 1981, a top spy misplaced a briefcase in the Aro Valley. All it contained were his business cards, a diary of scurrilous gossip, three mince pies, two fruit pies, the NZ Listener, and a Penthouse magazine. Unfortunately for him, the briefcase was discovered by the son of a prominent political journalist. This satirical novel looks at modern day spies in New Zealand, the new existential threat of Islamic terrorism and at a very New Zealand response to a global issue.”(Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Death on D’Urville : a Claire Hardcastle mystery / by Penelope Haines.
“Claire Hardcastle is fiery, clever, daring and she’s trying to prove herself in a man’s world. When her routine flight to pick a passenger up from a remote island in the Marlborough Sounds turns into a murder investigation she is excited to discover she may hold a clue to the crime. Why would anyone want to murder an inoffensive, reclusive novelist? Her interest in solving the murder is heightened by her growing attraction to Detective Sergeant Jack Body. As Claire and Jack’s professional and personal partnership deepens they have to accept that, for others, obsession can turn sour, and become a malignant strain that leads to murder. The key to solving Jorge’s death depends on unravelling a tangle of motives as diverse as rifled grave goods, artefact smuggling, disputed Maori history, breached tapu, and child abuse.” (Adapted from Syndetis summary)

Syndetics book coverAll day at the movies / Fiona Kidman.
“Life isn’t always like it appears in the movies. In 1952, Irene Sandle takes her young daughter to Motueka. Irene was widowed during the war and is seeking a new start and employment in the tobacco fields. There, she finds the reality of her life far removed from the glamour of the screen. Can there be romance and happy endings, or will circumstances repeat through the generations? Each subsequent episode in this poignant work follows family secrets and the dynamics of Irene’s children. The story doesn’t just track their lives, but also New Zealand itself as its attitudes and opportunities change and reverberate through the decades.”(Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverMysterious mysteries of the Aro Valley / Danyl McLauchlan. “A returning hero to a desolate valley, a missing mathematician, a glamorous and beguiling council bureaucrat with a hidden past. A cryptic map leading to an impossible labyrinth, an ancient conspiracy, an ancient evil and a housing development without proper planning permission. All these things leading to the most mysterious mystery of all.” (Adapted from Book cover)

Syndetics book coverThe case of the missing body / Jenny Powell.
“The Case of the Missing Body is the true and unusual story of Lily, who has no sense of her body. She has struggled with the effects of this her whole life. Desperate to try anything to ‘be normal’, a nevertheless skeptical Lily agrees to begin work with her physiotherapist in a gymnasium. One extraordinary day, working in the gym, Lily discovers she has shoulder blades. All her life she has thought people only felt their heads, with thoughts trailing along in and behind them. Now she has shoulder blades. There is nothing easy about what is to follow. Neither Patrick (the physiotherapist) nor Lily could have predicted it. But with help from professionals, the writer of this beautiful, moving memoir becomes her own detective, searching for clues to help her find her own body.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverNapoleon’s willow / Joan Norlev Taylor.
“In 1837, on remote St Helena Island in the South Atlantic Ocean, Frenchman François Lelièvre searches for the legendary willow tree beside Napoleon’s grave. A tree in which he believes Napoleon’s spirit is still alive, inspiring the noble ideals of the French Revolution, liberty, equality and brotherhood. With cuttings from Napoleon’s willow in his care, François journeys to Akaroa on the Banks Peninsular in New Zealand aboard a whaling ship, and plants these in this new land during a time of conflict, as the French and British compete to be the first to colonize this newly-discovered part of the country. Around the same time, Marianne a young schoolteacher from England sets out on a turbulent path via the new British colonies of Sydney in New South Wales and Russell in the Bay of Islands, that leads her to the same place, looking for her own sense of liberty. They both encounter and befriend a well-travelled and respected Maori man from Banks Peninsular, Manako-uri, who is facing his own difficulties and challenges as the newcomers plant their hopes and dreams in his ancestral land.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

New ‘Other Genres’ fiction for June, this month featuring New Zealand writers

The New Zealand writers featuring this month in our ‘Other Genre’ category reflect a wide range of theme. From historical to contemporary national issues, romance to time travel, all open some new and thought provoking views on our society. Highly recommended is the new novel from Linda Olsson, titled The Blackbird sings at Dusk.

Syndetics book coverWhispers of the past / by Owen Clough.
“Sam is employed by the Department of Conservation (DoC). His two mates are helping out. Their task is to clear out as many feral pigs as they can in the Tongariro National Park. There are three major volcanoes within this park, so the culling of the pigs has to be done with great care as there are an abundant amount of thermal and mud pools. The three friends draw even closer as they get caught up in a weather pattern with a difference. Mist, sulphur and rain envelop them and propel them back to the start of the New Zealand Wars of 1863, three modern blokes, with all the paraphernalia of the 21st century, running around in the past, confused, lost, and trying to stay out of harm’s way, once they realize where they are. Will they get home? Will they change history?” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverSicilian papa / Ronald C. Fama.
“This is an epic tale set within the context of Victorian England and an Italy under King Ferdinand II, this novel is full of historical detail and characters. While following the adventures of our hero, Vincenzo, as he takes to a life at sea and eventually emigrates from London to New Zealand, it becomes clear that he will never be able to escape his Sicilian roots and the inevitability of vendetta.” (Adapted from Book cover)

Syndetics book coverCondemn not my children : the consequences of pious evil / Kasey Coory.
“When a deviant priest violates a nun, she is sworn to silence by the church in order to avoid a scandal and then married off to the priest’s older brother, with unforeseen consequences. Abandoned by those in whom she has placed her trust, a desperate mother suffers a mental breakdown and is deprived of her children. Near the end of the nineteenth century, two families immigrate to New Zealand, sparking a story that will follow both from that time through the middle of the twentieth century. As an unholy liaison interweaves the two groups, the emotional tapestry is unraveled and rewoven by women of the following generations, each with her own story of heartbreak and courage.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverLosing & winning / Thomas W. Devine.
“Will New Zealand teacher, Ryan Gibson, get to claim his Lotto win? Or will Kristen Piper, his girlfriend, collect the prize for herself as a way out of the double-life she’s been living for five years? With the best of intentions, Ryan follows her across the globe, and eventually to the island of Sicily, cradle of Mediterranean culture. But someone else is also out to find her, and they will stop at nothing.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverClose to you / Kara Isaac.
“A disgraced scholar running from her past and an entrepreneur chasing his future find themselves thrown together and falling in love, on a Tolkien tour of New Zealand.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe blackbird sings at dusk / Linda Olsson.
“One winter evening, Elias, a young artist, watches a woman move into his apartment building. After closing her door, however, she is not seen again. A misdirected letter finally gives Elias the opportunity to make contact. But inside her dark apartment, Elisabeth refuses to respond to his knock. Her only company is the Woman in Green, an unbidden vision from her childhood dreams. Elias, meanwhile, is not to be deterred and draws his friend Otto, an elderly widower, into his attempts to entice Elisabeth into the world.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe wrong sister / Kris Pearson.
“Fiona Delaporte has an impossible assignment, to care for her newly widowed brother-in-law and his tiny daughter. (The newly widowed tall, dark and delicious brother-in-law she’s secretly wanted for five long, frustrating years.) Christian Hartley would rather spend time with anyone except the tempting woman who reminds him so much of his cherished wife. But she has six weeks leave from her cruise-liner job on the other side of the world, and seems determined to do her family duty. How can craving the wrong sister feel so right?” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverSomething else / David Parkyn.
“In a city threatened by drought, in a country wracked by unusual weather patterns, in an empty building about to be demolished, a fugitive from art contemplates a blank canvas, a jar of old brushes and a fresh page in his journal. As he surveys the grounds on which he’s lived and worked ‘a mutinous crew’ conspires to take him on a voyage of salvage and recovery, into inner city Auckland of the ‘sixties to revisit the deaths in which he believes his early obsession is implicated. A voyage to illuminate a looming personal and global disaster, to navigate the boundaries of art and politics, obsession and friendship and the shifting shores of modern art movements.” (Adapted from Book cover)

Syndetics book coverDolly Doll : love in the backblocks / Leo Schulz.
“Dolly is 15 and about to flower, when she runs off on a joyride with her boyfriend. They have a car, liquor, weed, cash and a gun. But their dash for glory is short-lived. They are quickly caught between the police and the Mongrel Mob. Tangled up in a deceptive world of sex, drugs and violence, will Dolly fall for the strangely gentle charms of a leader of the Mongrel Mob?” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe last time we spoke / Fiona Sussman.
“One mild summer evening in rural New Zealand the lives of Carla Reid, a middle-aged farmer’s wife, and Ben Toroa, an illiterate teen, brutally collide. Neither will be the same again, their futures forever linked. In the bleak aftermath of this home invasion, this novel traces both Carla and Ben’s journey as they each try to make sense of their new reality. Carla’s long road from rage and resentment interleaves with Ben’s time in prison as he hardens into manhood. Set again these parallel stories is also the voice of a Maori ancestor who looks down from Beyond, transporting the story to a wider historical stage.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

New eBook Fiction from New Zealand

We have some excellent novels this month from New Zealand authors you might not have heard of, and all are available as eBooks through Overdrive. New Zealand authors cover a range of genres so no matter what you enjoy, you’re bound to find something great. This month we have romance, thrillers and plenty of drama.

Overdrive cover Novel About My Wife, by Emily Perkins (eBook)
“Tom Stone is madly in love with his wife Ann. Pushing forty and expecting their first child, they buy a derelict house in Hackney. Despite their spiralling money troubles, they believe this is their settled future. But Ann becomes convinced she’s being shadowed by a homeless man. As their child grows, Ann’s behaviour becomes increasingly erratic, feverish and disturbed. On the verge of losing everything, Tom makes a decision that he hopes will save their lives.” (Adapted from Overdrive description)

Overdrive cover Trifecta, by Ian Wedde (eBook)
“Trifecta looks at the odds in the lives of the three children of Martin and Agnes Klepka. Martin was one of the refugees of Nazism who famously brought Modernist architecture and ‘real coffee’ to New Zealand. Many years after his early death from a heart attack, Klepka’s children are struggling in their different ways with the difficult legacy of their charismatic, overbearing father.” (Adapted from Overdrive description)

Overdrive cover White Lies, by Witi Ihimaera (eBook)
“A medicine woman – a giver of life – is asked to hide a secret that may protect a position in society, but could have fatal consequences. When she is approached by the servant of a wealthy woman, three very different women become players in a head-on clash of beliefs, deception and ultimate salvation. This compelling story tackles moral dilemmas, exploring the nature of identity, societal attitudes to the roles of women and the tension between Western and traditional Maori medicine.” (Adapted from Overdrive description)

Overdrive cover Paint Your Wife, by Lloyd Jones (eBook)
“Long ago, when the men were away at the war, Alma began painting the women of the town. They sat for him in lieu of payment for his work. Alice returned his attentions, and when her husband, George, came home from the war, he set out to prove his love and reclaim his wife by moving a hill—wheelbarrow by wheelbarrow—for her. Now, Alma’s ‘in lieu of’ payment is revived, and the townspeople, looking to escape various corners of despair, turn to drawing classes.”(Adapted from Overdrive description)

Overdrive cover Trust No One, by Paul Cleave (eBook)
“Jerry is known to most of the world by his crime writing pseudonym, Henry Cutter. Diagnosed with Alzheimer’s at 49, Jerry’s crime writing days are over. His books tell stories of brutal murders committed by bad men, of a world out of balance, of victims finding the darkest forms of justice. As his dementia begins to break down the wall between his life and the characters, Jerry confesses: The stories are real. He committed the crimes. Those close to him, including the nurses at the care home where he now lives, insist that it is all in his head, that his memory is being toyed with and manipulated by his unfortunate disease. But if that were true, then why are people dying?” (Adapted from Google Books)

Overdrive cover New Beginnings at Lilyfields, by Lottie Bloom (eBook)
“Lilyfields cottage has been lying empty, until Orla Nolan moves in. She’s there to recuperate after an accident has dashed her dreams of acting. Orla is feeling lonely and dejected, but before long she is confronted by two handsome suitors. She’s spoilt for choice. But they are father and son, and while one is a touch too old and too settled for her liking, might the other be too young and too wild? As Orla struggles to find a new role for herself at Lilyfields, will its magic deliver true love?” (Adapted from Overdrive description)

Overdrive cover After Z-Hour, by Elizabeth Knox (eBook)
“Stranded by a South Island storm, six people usurp the stillness of an old house. As they tell the fragments of their story, a seventh voice responds: a young New Zealand serviceman who died in 1920, soon after his return from France. As the storm deepens, the hauntings of the mind and the hauntings of the house become one. First published on Armistice Day 1987, After Z-Hour won the PEN Award for Best First Book of Prose.” (Overdrive description)

Overdrive cover Rock Redemption, by Nalini Singh (eBook)
“Kit Devigny could have loved rock guitarist Noah St. John. Their friendship burned with the promise of intense passion and searing tenderness…until the night Noah deliberately shattered her heart. Noah knows he destroyed something precious. All he has left is his music. When a media error sees Noah and Kit dubbed the new “it” couple, Kit discovers her chance at the role of a lifetime hinges on riding the media wave.” (Adapted from Overdrive description)

Overdrive cover The Party Line, by Sue Orr (eBook)
“The Baxters do not know their place. On the first of June sharemilkers load their trucks and crawl along the highways towards new farms, new lives. They’re inching towards that ultimate dream – buying their own land. Fenward’s always been lucky with its sharemilkers: grateful, grafting folk who understand what’s expected of them. Until now. This is a coming-of-age story for two young girls who hold a mirror up to the place and people they love. It’s a coming-of-age story, too, for a community forced to stare back at the image of a damaged soul.” (Adapted from Overdrive description)

New ‘Other Genres’ this month featuring New Zealand Fiction

This month we are featuring New Zealand fiction in our ‘Other Genres’ category. In this selection there is an exciting, diverse, range on novels, and some great writing. New work from two much acclaimed veteran writers Owen Marshall and Damien Wilkins are also included.

Syndetics book coverMy father’s ears / Karen Goa.
“When an Italian immigrant’s harsh but intriguing past catches up with him, his skeptical daughter Sophie sets out to discover the truth about her father, his affair with a Romanian trapeze artist and a mysterious New Zealander claiming to be his son. This twisting tale of secrets and social dilemmas is set against a remarkable and moving history of Italian immigration.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverHold my teeth while I teach you to dance / Mike Johnson.
“Investigative journalist Jason Argonaut is not content to rest on his laurels and dream of past glories. No, he has to take too great an interest in his fascinating new neighbours, play the Grandfather Detective, and find himself in possession of the world best kept secret, or is it? A delicious mix of murder, mayhem and intrigue.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Image from fishpond.co.nzReturn to Lucifer Creek/ Gary Joll.
“Barry Morton is hunting illegally on Lilybank, a large property in the Southern Alps of New Zealand. He seeks a unique trophy, a pure white bull Tahr. Upon returning to his well-concealed secret camp he discovers a young woman bathing in the hot pool, a pool he believed was known only to members of his family. He is then forced to save his own life by killing two individuals wearing grey camo who clearly were intent on killing him. Barry quickly realizes this group of apparent terrorists, is killing all persons unlucky enough to encounter them. Within hours of his lethal encounter with these Grey Ghosts Barry suspects they may have killed members of the climbing party to which Helen, his unexpected camp companion, belongs. If they are to survive, Barry and Helen must play a deadly game of hide-and-seek; becoming the hunters not the hunted.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverAbsence / Joanna King.
“Four sisters meet for a holiday on the spectacularly beautiful Cinque Terre Coast of Italy. One of the sisters disappears. Under the stress, the hidden emotional and sexual rivalries between the others are laid bare. For the youngest, the disappearance of her sister is a profound threat. This is the person with whom she has had the truest bond since the collapse of the family twenty years ago. Is the disappearance accidental or intentional? Have the sisters shockingly misunderstood one of their own? How radically will the missing sister’s fate alter their lives? Husbands and lovers, future hopes and the family’s past, all come under intense scrutiny in the vortex of events” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Image from fishpond.co.nzCold hard murder / Trish McCormack.
“Two people struggle on a ledge high above the surge pool at Punakaiki’s Pancake Rocks. One falls to their death, beginning a sequence of violence as Department of Conservation ranger Matt Grey announces plans for a commercial tourism venture bitterly opposed by the local community. More people die, and it seems their murders are motivated by something more personal than a threat to the integrity of the national park. But the trail is as cold and twisted as some of the park’s most labyrinthine caves. Philippa Barnes is asked to do some unofficial sleuthing, which is not welcomed by the police. She delves into the lives of some strong-willed individuals, many of whom have secrets, uncovering a dark story that resonates with events in her own life.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe death ray debacle / David McGill.
“In June 1935 Takapuna inventor Victor Penny was attacked by foreign agents seeking what the newspapers dubbed a ‘death ray’. The government secretly shifted him to Somes Island in Wellington harbour to develop the weapon. The novel of this true story is told by Temporary Acting Detective Dan Delaney, seconded to Special Branch, forerunner of the Security Intelligence Service.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverLove as a stranger / Owen Marshall.
“Temporarily in Auckland while her husband is undergoing treatment, Sarah enjoys a walk in the coolness of the Symonds Street Cemetery. As she pauses at the grave of Emily Keeling, murdered in 1886 by a rejected suitor, a stranger named Hartley strikes up a conversation. Before long he arranges to meet Sarah for coffee. So their friendship begins, and soon blossoms into an affair, rich in mutual understanding and sexual excitement. But love may become obsession, which brings with it disquieting demands, even menace. When love is not madness, it is not love.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverRachel’s legacy / Julie Thomas.
“The sequel to The Keeper of Secrets, following the fortunes of the Horowitz family from pre-war Berlin to the present. When Dr Kobi Voight is given a set of old letters by his mother he has no inkling that they will lead him around the world and deep into the tragic past of his family. Within the letters, written in Hebrew and filled with delicate illustrations, lie the reflections of a young Jewish woman, forced to give up her baby daughter while fighting with the Resistance in Berlin. Who is the author, known only as ‘Ruby’, and what became of her child? And how does a priceless work of art, stolen by the Nazis, form part of the unfolding mystery?” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverDad art / Damien Wilkins.
“It’s Wellington, now. Acoustic Engineer Michael Stirling’s old life is gone. He’s on the dating scene, learning te reo Maori, living in an upmarket apartment complex, and visiting his father who has dementia. Wearing his online dating disguise, Michael meets Chrissie, the widowed mother of a young son. Then his beloved adult daughter arrives from Auckland with a new attachment, an artist whose project will push them all towards key moments of risk and revelation.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverTwister / Jane Woodham.
“March 2013. Two months before parliament is to vote on legalising gay marriage, a spate of vicious attacks on gay men erupts in Dunedin. Then a twister rips through, uncovering the body of schoolgirl, Tracey Wenlock. Former Londoner, Detective Senior Sergeant Leo Judd, is to lead the investigation, the first such enquiry since his own daughter, Beth, went missing nine years earlier. As Judd carefully uncovers the truth surrounding Tracey Wenlock’s death, the trauma associated with his own daughter’s disappearance resurfaces.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

New ‘Other Genres’ for January 2016, this month featuring New Zealand Fiction

New Zealand writers feature in this month’s selection from the new ‘Other Genres’ category. There are several debut novelists, and the fiction themes range from historical romances to psychological thrillers, from werewolves to substance abuse. Also included is the latest novel from the well-known writer Albert Wendt, titled Breaking connections.

firstnamesonlyFirst names only : a New Zealand novel / Elaine Blick.
“Janice at 18 is ambitious and has set her sights on a top degree in languages. When she finds she is pregnant Janice’s world comes crashing down, for this is 1960s New Zealand, when to be pregnant and single is a disgrace. Janice has no choice but to enter Sunnyvale, a home for unmarried mothers in Auckland. Once the baby is born the maternal tug is powerful and she longs to keep him. Can Janice bear to give up her child with the knowledge that she may never see him again?” (Adapted from Book cover)

Syndetics book coverNew beginnings at Lilyfields / Lottie Bloom.
“Lilyfields cottage has been lying empty since its previous occupant, Rosa, got married. It’s just the haven Orla Nolan is looking for. She needs to recuperate after an accident has dashed her dreams of acting in a movie that’s being filmed in a neighbouring bay. Orla is feeling lonely and dejected, but before long she is confronted by two handsome suitors. She’s spoilt for choice, except they are father and son, and while one is a touch too old and too settled for her liking, might the other be too young and too wild? Meanwhile Rosa’s former boyfriend has turned up and appears to be finding it hard to let go of his lost love. As Orla struggles to find a new role for herself at Lilyfields, will its magic deliver true love?” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverBackwards Into the Future / Bronwyn Elsmore
“Everyone knows you can’t go back. Everyone except Mary apparently, because here she is, back in her old hometown. That’s because of two women, Kui and Ana. One of them is pushing her, the other is holding back, and between the two there’s much to be resolved. The plum tree and the manuka have gone, but a lemon tree thrives. The mystery of the Marakihau may never be solved; but if Ana returns, their friendship and some things from the past can be recovered. Can’t they?” (Adapted from Book cover)

Syndetics book coverThe bordello girl / Hilary Murray.
“Auckland bordello owner Kitty Malloy understands men. But even she is taken aback when Silas Crawford asks her help with his young, naive wife. Twenty-three year old Thea Crawford has come to realise getting married was a terrible mistake and yearns to be free of her middle-aged over-bearing husband and his constant demands. Darius is a playboy and adventurer. A favored customer at the bordello, when Thea is blackmailed into becoming one of Kitty’s girls he sweeps her off her feet. But should she listen to the others when they tell her of his reputation? Or are his feelings for her real?” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

seerswolfThe seer’s wolf / Barbara Petrie.
“It is 1952 and strange events are taking place in Loam, a small settlement in rural Canterbury, New Zealand. Ralph Randal, his wife Irena and their three daughters have immigrated to the area from England, but as they settle in, the curiosity of Clover, a neighbouring farm girl, is aroused. An air of mystery surrounds the English family, and Ralph Randal appears to dote excessively on his lovely eighteen-year-old daughter, Satina. What is really happening to cause an unsettling shadow of gloom to enshroud the community?” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe exodus file / Reg Puckey.
“An American scientist discovers an asteroid made of magnetite will pass close enough to Earth to shift not just the magnetic north pole but the physical north pole as well, right into the heart of the USA. Mark Lucas chooses to brief the President about America’s ice-age fate before telling his scientific colleagues, a decision that threatens to cost him his life, his conscience and his integrity, as a national security ‘cone of silence’ descends on his discovery. At what point does political power become megalomania? If the end of the world was coming, who would you tell?” (Adapted from Syndetics summary).

Syndetics book coverThe gentlemen’s club / Jen Shieff.
“Headstrong and independent, Rita Saunders is a successful hairdresser by day and a busy brothel madam by night. The only thing missing from her life is the love of a good woman. Istvan Ziegler is a Hungarian immigrant who has come to New Zealand to work on the brand new harbour bridge project. He is full of hope and dreams of a better life. Sixteen-year-old Judith Curran has come to Auckland for an abortion. With no money or family support, she finds herself at the mercy of strangers and simply has to hope they have her best interests at heart. Becoming bound into a desperate situation involving a group of orphan girls, Rita, Judith and Istvan find fortitude they never knew they possessed. But do they have enough of it to expose the menacing orphanage director and the slice of the heartless and seedy 1950s’ underworld he inhabits?” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverBreaking connections : a novel / by Albert Wendt.
“A dynamic group has emerged in Auckland whose members refer to themselves as the Tribe. Mainly Polynesian, they grow up together, rise from poverty and become successful professionals, bound by love and fierce loyalty. At the centre, is Aaron, who lives at the edge of danger, shady dealings and self-destruction. When Daniel, receives a call in Hawaii telling him that Aaron has been killed, he returns to New Zealand and steps into the most dangerous crisis the Tribe has faced. They must confront the truth about who Aaron is and what they, as the Tribe, have become, and also face the infidelity and greed that threaten the cohesion of the Tribe.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe Pounamu prophecy : a sweeping story of love, betrayal and hope / Cindy Williams.
“Since she watched her village burn to the ground, Mere’s life has been anything but dull. Now as an older woman she has come to stay with Helene and James to finish writing her life story, a tale of injustice, revenge and reconciliation.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverHow to grow an addict : a novel / J. A. Wright.
“Randall Grange has been tricked into admitting herself into a treatment center and she doesn’t know why. She’s not a party hound like the others in her therapy group but then again, she knows she can’t live without pills or booze. Her parents introduced her to alcohol and tranquilizers at a young age, ensuring that her teenage years would be full of bad choices, and by the time she’s twenty-three years old, she’s a full-blown drug addict, well acquainted with the miraculous power chemicals have to cure just about any problem she could possibly have and she’s in more trouble than she’s ever known was possible.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

New ‘Other Genres’ fiction for October featuring New Zealand writers

An amazing selection of new fiction from New Zealand writers, that reveals their skill and talent, over a wide range of different genres. We promise hours of entertaining and very satisfying reading.

Syndetics book coverA crooked rib / Judy Corbalis.
“A compelling novel based on the disastrous and scandalous marriage of New Zealand’s Governor Sir George Grey and his lively young wife, Eliza Lucy. Trapped in an increasingly loveless union, Sir George and his wife, Eliza Lucy, each sought affection elsewhere. Lady Grey’s indiscretion caused her to be cast off by her husband and vilified throughout colonial and domestic Victorian high society. Meanwhile the nature of Sir George’s liaison with his young Maori protégé was to remain only the subject of speculation.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverR.H.I. : two novellas / Tim Corballis.
“A researcher sits in the archive of the British Psychoanalytic Society in London, examining fragile pieces of paper, small notebooks, and diaries. A writer in Berlin finds himself haunted by the city’s socialist-era buildings, and by their designer. Each begins to sketch the historical figure at the heart of his fixation. Joan Riviere was an early English psychoanalyst and Sigmund Freud’s earliest translator. Hermann Henselmann was a German architect, famous for many of the post-war buildings of the German Democratic Republic. The two novellas about their lives form an incomplete history of Europe’s 20th century-its wars, its politics and thought.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverTrust no one : a thriller / Paul Cleave.
“A famous crime writer struggles to differentiate between his own reality and the frightening plot lines he’s created for the page. Jerry Grey is known to most of the world by his crime writing pseudonym, Henry Cutter–a name that has been keeping readers at the edge of their seats for more than a decade. Recently diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer’s at the age of forty-nine, Jerry’s crime writing days are coming to an end. His twelve books tell stories of brutal murders committed by bad men, of a world out of balance, of victims finding the darkest forms of justice. As his dementia begins to break down the wall between his life and the lives of the characters he has created, Jerry confesses his worst secret: The stories are real. He knows this because he committed the crimes.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe lost one : the Romanov legacy / by Penelope Haines.
“She is an orphan, independent, unattached and free of any personal ties. So why is Purdie Davis, an unexceptional nurse from New Zealand, receiving unsolicited gifts? They are nothing ordinary but unusual, valuable antiques that must have a story behind them. Purdie doesn’t know their source, and has no idea of their significance. Is she wrong to find this attention menacing? A romantic saga spanning three generations, The Lost One begins as Kyril Komarov flees Moscow, escaping the Russian Revolution. The story crosses the globe as Purdie learns about her family and of the treasure entrusted to their protection at the dawn of the twentieth century, a treasure that now could put Purdie’s own life in danger.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverJames Cook’s lost world / Graeme Lay.
“On his third and tragic voyage of discovery Captain James Cook traverses the world yet again, increasingly and uncharacteristically brutal toward his crew, and on a fateful course with destiny.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe antipodeans : a novel / Greg McGee.
“Beginning with the return to Venice of an old and sick man determined to confront his past, and accompanied by his daughter who is escaping hers, The Antipodeans spans three generations of a New Zealand family and their interaction with three families of Northern Italy. From Venice to the South Island of New Zealand, from the assassination of a Gestapo commander in the last days of Italian resistance in WWII to contemporary real estate shenanigans in Auckland, from political assassination in the darkest days of the Red Brigade to the vaulting cosmology of particle physics.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe battle of Messines Road / J.K. & W.J. Moloney.
The Battle of Messines Road is a commentary on the changing perception of war over time amongst New Zealanders, and is an invitation to remember what is slipping away from public consciousness, to explain to today’s generation (in this case exemplified by young Zac) the reason why medal-bedecked old men huddle around war memorials to the sound of the Last Post each year.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverRoad from Rosehall / Mike Munro.
“When rural labourer George Munro, the author’s great-great grandfather, departs the family croft in the Scottish Highlands in 1851 and begins an emigrant’s journey, he joins an outflow of Scots who are seeking better lives in Britain’s colonies. With countless weeks of confinement in a sailing ship, vast and perilous oceans, the risk of falling victim to disease or skulduggery, and the uncertainty of what he will find in the far-off land where he plans to settle.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe party line / Sue Orr.
“Set in a vividly drawn farming community in 1970s New Zealand. The Baxters do not know their place. On the first of June every year, sharemilkers load their trucks with their families, pets and possessions and crawl along the highways towards new farms, new lives. They’re inching towards that ultimate dream, buying their own land. Fenward’s always been lucky with its sharemilkers: grateful, grafting folk who understand what’s expected of them, until now, when grief-stricken Ian Baxter and his precocious daughter, Gabrielle, arrive.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverTrifecta / Ian Wedde.
“Martin Klepka was one of the refugees of Nazism who famously brought Modernist architecture and ‘real coffee’ to New Zealand. Many years after his early death from a heart attack, his children are struggling in their different ways with the difficult legacy of their charismatic, overbearing father. Sandy, who was disliked by his father, is a cultural historian in the twilight of his career, disgraced, divorced and reduced to a .2 position at Auckland University. Veronica, who bored her father, is struggling with a failing art deco Napier tour company and an alcoholic husband. And Mick, Martin Klepka’s favourite, a gambling, methamphetamine and sex addict, is still living alone in the Red House, his father’s plagiarized masterpiece.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Ngaio Marsh Award for best crime novel announced

Syndetics book coverPaul Cleave has won this year’s Ngaio Marsh Award for his crime novel titled Five Minutes Alone.
This is his eighth crime novel, the first was published in 2006 and was titled The Cleaner. This is the second time he has won this award, winning previously in 2011, with his novel titled Blood Men published in 2010.
His novels have been translated into fifteen languages, and many have been shortlist for international crime writing awards.

New ‘Other Genres’, this month featuring New Zealand Fiction

New Zealand Fiction is featured in this month’s ‘Other Genres’ category. This selection highlights the skill and diversity of New Zealand writers. A wide range themes and genres are included, from debut novels to historical, romantic suspense to science fiction, alternative histories to short stories.

Syndetics book coverFool’s gold / Zana Bell.
“It’s 1866 and the gold rush is on. Left to fend for herself in the wilds of New Zealand’s west coast, Lady Guinevere Stanhope is determined to do whatever it takes to rescue her ancestral home and restore her father’s good name. Forced out of his native Ireland, Quinn O’Donnell dreams of striking gold. His fiercely held prejudices make him loath to help any English person, let alone a lady as haughty and obstinate as Guinevere. But when a flash flood hits, Quinn is compelled to rescue her, and their paths become entwined in this uncharted new world.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe shark party / Janet Colson.
“For Carla, February means the pressure of another birthday party for Nathan and his wealthy New York art world friends. She buys him a book about Kurt Schwitters, an artist he is thinking of collecting, but a chance encounter with a man in the bookstore changes everything. Patrick, an environmental filmmaker, challenges her relationship and her artistic ambition. In the wake of their fierce attraction, the unscrupulous world that has seduced Carla begins to unravel and the harder she tries to break free the tighter Nathan’s grip becomes.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe Paris inheritance / Merryn Corcoran.
“Sixteen year old Mary Hampton is tall, stunningly beautiful but damaged. Born and raised on an isolated farm in rural New Zealand, she is forced to harbour a horrific secret. Mary runs away from home. Armed only with determination and the contents of a letter, she travels to France to search for her Parisian birth father. She begins working as a seamstress in the humble back streets of Paris, where her design skills are quickly recognized. Stunningly, beautiful Mary soon makes new friendships and her fashion career is distracted when she is offered a position as a dancer at the glamorous Moulin Rouge. Her journey to success is hampered by betrayal, jealousy and sabotage.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverPublic sex in Paekakariki : a magical realism tale / Sandi Hall.
“When nurse Margaret Spindle discovers a lovely but travel-worn pregnant stranger asleep in St Peter’s, one with no handbag or luggage except a bulging black rubbish bag, she turns for help to her closest friends, life partners Fay Dalgety and Ruth Bone. On the same day, Fay meets another stranger in Paekakariki. This is designer-chic Freddie Tasco, as out of place in the village as a boot in an aquarium. Fay thinks Freddie is just passing through but Freddie has much sexier plans.” (Adapted from Book cover)

Syndetics book coverNew Hokkaido / James McNaughton.
“It is 1987, forty-five years after Japan conquered New Zealand, and the brutal shackles of the occupation have loosened a little: English can be spoken by natives in the home, and twenty-year-old Business English teacher Chris Ipswitch has a job at the Wellington Language Academy. But even Chris and his famous older brother, the Night Train, a retired Pan-Asian sumo champion, cannot stay out of the conflict between the Imperial Japanese Army and the Free New Zealand movement. When Chris takes it upon himself to investigate a terrible crime, he is drawn into the heart of the struggle for freedom, guided along the way by the mysterious Hitomi Kurosawa and the ghost of Kiwi rock ‘n’ roll legend and martyr Johnny Lennon.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverBlood and koka kola : short stories / Chistodoulos E. G. Moisa.
“The 24 short stories in this collection of short stories by poet and artist, Christodoulos Moisa, is everything such a book should be. They make compelling reading and the subject matter ranges from macabre to historical, from the mythical to the quirky, some enigmatic, others rich with humour and irony; all written with perfect pitch.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe Jovian legacy / Lilla Nicholas-Holt.
“Jovian, a planet deep within the universe with an Earth-like atmosphere, is a world of genetically enhanced specimens. Lives are longer, knowledge is advanced, and everything is tuned for a greater sensory experience. Thirty-five light years away on Earth, Jack is a young man who has lived an ordinary New Zealand way of life, surfing the Internet on his computer and spending time with his new girlfriend, Megan. Suddenly Jack finds himself drawn into a world of virtual reality, interplanetary travel and Jovian scientists who express great interest in him.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe chimes / Anna Smaill.
“The Chimes is set in a reimagined London, in a world where people cannot form new memories, and the written word has been forbidden and destroyed. In the absence of both memory and writing is music. In a world where the past is a mystery, each new day feels the same as the last, and before is blasphemy, all appears lost. But Simon Wythern, a young man who arrives in London seeking the truth about what really happened to his parents, discovers he has a gift that could change all of this forever.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverSome here among us / Peter Walker.
“It is 1967, and as America’s allies hesitate over whether to send more troops to Vietnam and students take to the streets of Wellington, New Zealand, to protest the war. Among them are Race, Candy, Chadwick and FitzGerald and their elusive, electrifying friend Morgan Tawhai. They are young and hopeful and the world is all before them. Forty years later, in Washington DC, Race’s son Toby is navigating his own path across a landscape still trembling with the reverberations of 9/11. Race and his companions move through the first decade of the new millennium, their friendships tested and pulled apart and reconfigured anew, they come to discover that Morgan who will forever remain the twenty-year-old they once knew, is both the mystery and the touchstone of their lives.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)