Monday, November 11, 2013

"Creepy. Arrogant. Funny. Likeable. And unlucky"

In a way, all that I've been involved with in New Zealand crime fiction, from reviews to author interviews to this blog to the Ngaio Marsh Award to appearing at literary festivals, can be traced back to a handful of things that happened in 2008, including reading THE RINGMASTER by Vanda Symon and CEMETERY LAKE by Paul Cleave in my first couple of weeks back from a yearlong round-the-world trip.

Since that time in late 2008 when I rediscovered New Zealand crime fiction, Symon, Cleave and several others have taken our local embodiment of the genre from strength to strength, producing world-class tales of mystery, murder, and mayhem. Cleave of course kickstarted his writing career with THE CLEANER, a raw and vivid tale of a clever serial killer masquerading as a 'slow' janitor at the police station. Germany, in particular, really embraced this dark and violent tale, skyrocketing the book on the Amazon bestseller list. The book has also been optioned for a movie adaptation by a top European production company.

Now, more than a decade after Cleave first wrote THE CLEANER, and with several other internationally bestselling crime novels under his belt, the sequel has finally arrived in the form of JOE VICTIM. I recently read JOE VICTIM while in the USA, and enjoyed it (a review will follow soon).

In a recent interview with the New Zealand Book Council, Cleave talked about his crime writing, JOE VICTIM, and more. When asked to describe Joe, Cleave says:

"Creepy. Arrogant. Funny. Likeable. And unlucky. Joe's pretty much a fun-loving serial killer who just wants to find love. And kill people."
The short interview is an interesting read. You can read it in full on the Book Council webpage here (you may need to scroll down a little).

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