Saturday, 3 September 2011

Thirteen Hours

I was lucky enough to meet South African crime writer, Deon Meyer, at CrimeFest earlier this year. I asked if he thought crime fiction was by its nature subversive and he said yes, explaining how no one was able to write let alone publish crime under apartheid: 'How could you have a hero policeman under apartheid?'

Meyer also writes short stories and told me a collection should be available in the UK later this year. In the meantime, his Benny Griessel novels are a great way to discover Meyer's writing talent. My review of Thirteen Hours is up at Reviewing the Evidence today. Trackers is his next one.

Plucky young backpacker Rachel Anderson is on the run, from the gang of men who cut her best friend’s throat. In another part of Cape Town, Alexa Barnard wakes from a drunken stupor to find her cheating husband Adam’s been shot dead and she’s the chief suspect. Until Inspector Benny Griessel arrives on the scene; Benny is a recovering alcoholic whose spontaneous sympathy for Alexa nearly results in her death by suicide. As she recovers in hospital, the police begin investigating her husband’s murder and that of Rachel’s best friend. Seemingly unrelated, the paths of the two crimes do cross. It’s up to Benny Griessel to find out how, and why.

Read the rest of my review here.


J said...

Ooh, sounds very interesting. I've been ripping through crime novels lately and have been looking for ones outside of the cultural norm (UK and US). (Unfortunately I've now read all of my local library's tiny collection of Fred Vargas, and the last one I read turned out to be an early one, pre-Adamsberg, clumsily plotted and disappointing.)

Sarah Hilary said...

I think I know the Vargas you mean, the one with the trio of historians? Adamsberg is much better, although some of those three turn up in his stories, later on. (Check your email re book offer.) Deon Meyer is well worth a look. Added to which, he's a lovely chap, which always helps.

Lynne Perednia said...

Meyer's Devil's Peak made me a fan of his work; I've got more in the TBR mountains.

Also think Adamsberg is the best thing since Inspector Morse and have loved the Scandinavians -- Karin Fossum, Asa Larsson and Arnaldur Indridason, and Italians Carofiglio, Camilleri and Carlotto.

Sarah Hilary said...

Hi Lynne. Devil's Peak was my first Meyer novel too. Glad you're another Adamsberg fan - the more the better!