The Ngaio Marsh Awards celebrate literary excellence in crime, mystery, and thriller writing. This year’s winners for 2022 were announced last month and the big surprise of this year’s awards was that one book won both the Best Crime Novel and the Best First Novel.
Huge congratulations to Taranaki author Jacqueline Bublitz whose novel Before You Knew My Name won both the Best Crime Novel and the Best First Novel categories. She is the first author to do so for the same book in the same year. And whilst the competition was fierce with many great books in the shortlist, regular readers of this blog will know what big fans of this novel we are, so we were delighted to see it win .
This is the twelfth year for The Ngaio Marsh Awards and, as always, they were a terrific showcase of exciting and innovative Aotearoa New Zealand storytelling that is truly world class. Congratulations to all the short and longlisted authors.
Before you knew my name / Bublitz, Jacqueline
“Dead girls don’t usually get to tell their story, but Alice Lee has always been a different type of girl. When she arrives in New York on her eighteenth birthday, carrying nothing but $600 cash and a stolen Leica in her bag, Alice is a plucky teenager looking to start a new life away from her dark past. Now she’s ‘Jane Doe’, ‘Riverside Jane’, an unidentified body on a slab at City Morgue. Newspaper headlines briefly report that ‘the body was discovered by a jogger’. Ruby Jones is a lonely Australian woman trying to put distance between herself and a destructive relationship back home, and is struggling in the aftermath of being the person to find Alice’s body. When she encounters Death Club, a small group of misfits who meet at bars around the city to discuss death and dying, she finds a safe space to explore her increasing obsession with the girl and her unidentified killer. Alice, seemingly stuck between life and death, narrates Ruby’s story, hoping that this woman will help her come to terms with what happened and help identify her body. From this first, devastating encounter, an enduring connection between the two women is formed. One that will eventually lead to the man who murdered Alice…” (Adapted from Catalogue) Also available as an eBook.