Thursday, November 4, 2010

Ngaio Marsh Award for Best Crime Novel: event details!

Further to my post of last week, the time and date of the replacement event for the presentation of the first-ever Ngaio Marsh Award for Best Crime Novel (pictured right) has now been confirmed - the original event of course being postponed due to the Canterbury earthquake.

The event will be held in Christchurch on the evening of 30 November 2010. The full details are:

Whodunnit and Whowunnit?with the presentation of the inaugural Ngaio Marsh Award for Best Crime Novel7:30pm, Tuesday 30 November 2010
Visions on Campus Restaurant, CPIT, cnr Madras St & Ferry Road, Christchurch
Tickets $10, includes a glass of wine and nibbles
Drinks start at 7pm, author panel at 7:30pm
Contact: Ruth Todd 03 384 4721 or
So those of you who are reading the three finalists now have a little over three weeks to formulate your own opinion, before the official announcement. And booksellers have more time to promote all three finalists prior to the winner being announced. If any of you need any help sourcing copies of the three finalists, or other New Zealand crime fiction you'd like to give a go, please feel free to get in touch with me (craigsisterson[at]hotmail[dot]com) and I'll do my best to help.

THE THREE finalists for the inaugural Ngaio Marsh Award for Best Crime Novel, which will be presented at a ceremony in Christchurch next month, were announced in August. The award is made for the best crime, mystery, or thriller novel written by a New Zealand citizen or resident, published in New Zealand during 2009.

A panel of seven local and international judges considered the best of locally written crime and thriller fiction published last year. The three finalists are:

The international judges said CUT & RUN was “complex and suspenseful” and had “scenes and incidents which are jaw-droppingly good”, that BURIAL “maintained the tension and the atmosphere from beginning to end, keeping the atmosphere creepy”, and that CONTAINMENT had “an attractive series heroine (feisty but vulnerable)” while starting with a “superb” opening scene that by itself would make the judge “want to read more Vanda Symon”.
The Awards namesake, Dame Ngaio Marsh, is renowned worldwide as one of the four “Queens of Crime” of the Golden Age of Detective Fiction, having published 32 novels featuring Inspector Roderick Alleyn between 1934 and her death in 1982.

Will you be heading along to the event? Are you keen to find out who has won the inaugural Ngaio Marsh Award? What do you think of the three finalists for the first-ever award? Have you read any of them? Do you agree with the judges? Which is your favourite? What Kiwi crime novels might be in the running for the 2011 award, based on this year's books? Thoughts and comments welcome.


  1. Craig - I would love so much to be there that night! Wonder if everyone will find out who Alix Bosco is... I look forward to your coverage of the events!!!

  2. I've read all three and they're all so good; it must be a tough decision for the judges. For the 2011 award I think Surrender by Donna Malane should get a foot in the door. I can't think of anyone else at the moment, but I'm sure there are some good one's around.

  3. Craig,

    I may have mentioned this before, so forgive me if I have. I haven't read any of the three books nominated, but I have read _The Ringmaster_ by Vanda Symon (thanks to one of your earlier drawings--perhaps the first?) and can understand why she is one of the nominees.