Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Crime wave to strike Hamilton!

The programme for the 2012 Waikato Times Hamilton Garden Arts Festival has just been announced, and I'm very pleased to share that the organisers have picked up on the quality and growth of New Zealand crime writing, and have included what should be a terrific crime writing event.

The Waikato Times Hamilton Garden Arts Festival runs for the last couple of weeks of February, and consists of many terrific events, ranging from visual arts to music, comedy, film, theatre, dance, food and wine, and books. Held during what is often the best time of the New Zealand summer, it should be great.

There are four literary/books events at next year's festival, including a crime writing one. I say crime writing because it's a bit of a double header event, covering both true crime writing and crime fiction, with five fantastic New Zealand writers in attendance. At only $10 to attend, it's a complete steal. Here's the line-up of writers for the event:

Crime Writers
"Delve into the mind of crime"

Scott Bainbridge
New Zealand law means that all unsolved murder files are inaccessible for a period of 70 years. Even after this period, restricted access is rarely given. Bainbridge has been given unprecedented access to the police files for ten of New Zealand¹s most baffling unsolved murders.

Joan Rosier-Jones
In Joan's latest book, market gardener Chow Yat, lives on the outskirts of Whanganui in post-WWI New Zealand, a time of particularly rampant xenophobia. In 1922 this humble, hardworking Chinese man was brutally shot and the murder remained unsolved. Through sound enquiry Rosier-Jones single-handedly all but solves the case.

Ben Sanders
At 20 years of age, Ben Sanders fascination with crime fiction has paid off having just signed a two-book contract with HarperCollins Publishers. Ben's sophisticated and edgy writing style signals the emergence of a major new talent.

Vanda Symon
Vanda is the author of the Sam Shephard detective fiction series. Her latest novel Bound, went straight to number one in the New Zealand bestsellers lists.

Paul Cleave
At 24 Paul wrote The Killing Hour. A year later he wrote The Cleaner. In 2006, six years after it was written, The Cleaner was published. It became one of the biggest selling books ever to come out of New Zealand, picking up several international contracts within it's first year and introducing Joe, the 'loveable' serial killer who works at the Christchurch Police Department.

The Crime Writers event will be held at 5pm on Sunday 19 February 2012 at the Garden Terrace restaurant. Penny's Bookstore will be selling a range of the writers' books at the event.

Hope to see some of the North Island-based Crime Watch readers and crime fiction fans there on the night. Should be a great evening! Thanks to the organisers of the 2012 Waikato Times Hamilton Garden Arts Festival for embracing local crime writing in such a great way.

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