Friday, February 25, 2011

G is for Gaelyn Gordon's DEADLINES

Apologies for the delayed Crime Fiction Alphabet post this week - I've been a little distracted by first work, then the terrible events in Christchurch. Click here for some ways you can help with earthquake relief, no matter where in the world you may be.

But the Crime Fiction Alphabet rolls on, and our intrepid book bloggers out there around the blogosphere (and the globe) have this week been tapping away at their keyboards in creation of great, gripping posts related to the letter 'G'.

For my second go around at the Crime Fiction Alphabet (read my 2010 posts here), I've set myself the very challenging task of focusing not only just on New Zealand-themed posts, but just on Kiwi crime fiction books (ie I won't do any author profiles etc this time around) - although sometimes it may be the author's name that is relevant to the letter of the week.

So this week I'm featuring DEADLINES, a book by Gaelyn Gordon. Gordon is a very famous Kiwi author who wrote a wide variety of books for both children and adults, with myth, science fiction, fantasy, contemporary issues and adventure elements. She won several awards for her writing, and was a much beloved author before her all-to-early passing in 1997. The Storylines Gaelyn Gordon Award for a Much-Loved Book was established in 1999 to honour her memory and contribution to children's literature.

Amongst Gordon's work was some crime/mystery fiction, a small series starring Detective Senior Sergeant Rangi Roberts and Detective Constable Andy Pike. DEADLINES was the third Roberts/Pike novel, published in December 1996, shortly before Gordon's death from illness. It is currently out of print, but can be found in libraries and some secondhand shops (online also).

In DEADLINES, Detective Senior Sergeant Rangi Roberts faces yet another murky mystery. He knows the identity of the author of a flood of anonymous letters that afflicts the university and the local branch of the Society of Authors. He suspects that his neighbour's death was no accident.

But how can he prove it? How can he find out who killed the little creep? How come this writer came to be his neighbour? And how can he keep 'Sir' off his back until he finds out?

Most importantly, how is he going to make out with Julia, that highly intelligent, highly motivated, highly strung literary agent who so longs to find a man for whom she can be a doormat?

Will luck and blind chance once more come to the rescue of our hero?

Of course.

North and South (a very good New Zealand magazine) said that "Gordon never takes herself too seriously... and is always entertaining. We need more writers like her."

Have you read any of Gaelyn Gordon's work, whether adult crime novels, children's books, or otherwise? What do you think of writers who write across a broad range of genres/ages etc? Do any of your favourite authors do this? Comments welcome.


  1. Craig - I just love that title. And the story sounds intriguing, too. I actually have a lot of respect for authors who write in more than one genre!

  2. Thanks for this contribition to the CFA Carig. Gaelyn Gordon is new to me and regretfully my library hasn't heard of her either