Monday, June 13, 2011

My Herald on Sunday reviews: Hurwitz and Mofina

This year I've been asked to provide a monthly crime fiction round-up for the Herald on Sunday, one of New Zealand's most well-known newspapers. I'm very pleased to be able to contribute in my small way to getting crime fiction into the books sections of some local media.

My fifth 'column' was published yesterday, in the new 'Living' magazine supplement to the newspaper. Moving forward I will usually be doing four reviews (up from three) each month, however a last-minute design change meant they only used two of my reviews this month. Here is my latest (abbreviated) column.

Crime picks

Book blogger Craig Sisterson reveals his top picks from his recent reading

You’re Next

By Gregg Hurwitz (Sphere, $29.99)
Former Shakespearean scholar Hurwitz has become a true master of the ‘suburban thriller’, where ordinary people find themselves in extraordinary peril. Developer Mike Wingate has a nice life and family. He’s come a long way since being abandoned at a playground as a child. But things start going wrong: a stranger seems to recognise him, then threats, then attacks. How can he protect his family when he doesn’t even know what his unknown enemies want? A gripping page-turner, full of real emotional tension.

The Dying Hour
By Rick Mofina (Mira, $32.99)
Canadian thriller maestro Rick Mofina has been popular overseas for years, but his books have only recently become more available downunder. Rookie Seattle crime reporter Jason Wade is part of a cut-throat competitive internship, and finds himself investigating the puzzling disappearance of a college student whose car was found abandoned. When another woman is found murdered in a ritualistic fashion, no-one thinks the cases are connected, except Jason, who embarks on a terrifying journey that causes him to examine himself as much as the ‘case’. A throttle-open thriller with an engaging hero, compelling characters, and enough tension to keep you up late at night.

Craig Sisterson was one of the judges of the inaugural Ngaio Marsh Award for Best Crime Novel last year. He blogs about crime and thriller fiction at

This column was first published in the Herald on Sunday on 12 June 2011, and is reprinted here with permission.

What do you think of my mini-reviews? Of having such a regular column in one of New Zealand's major newspapers? Have you read (or do you intend to) any of these titles? What are some of the upcoming titles I should definitely include in future columns? Comments welcome.

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