Kerrie of Mysteries in Paradise ushers in the new year with a “murder in the outback” carnival theme. She points out (with appropriate video accompaniment) that Australia may be uniquely suited to murder – having a harsh climate, hardy roots transported in convict ships, and heroes who range from sheep thieves to the bushranger who was hanged for murder and gave his name to the country’s highest mystery writing honor, the Ned Kelly Award.
The acts that follow constitute a veritable graduate seminar on Australian crime fiction, specifically away from the populated coasts and into the outback, from colonial days to the present, a particularly fertile and exciting time for Australian crime fiction. The recommended authors and books come from the Oz Mystery Readers group – one of the grassroots efforts by avid readers down under to promote and sustain the genre. Included in those efforts are the wonderful AustCrime website and Daniel Hatadi’s Crimespace. I doubt there is a more dedicated and tech-savvy community of crime fiction fans anywhere else in the world. Readers everywhere owe them a debt of gratitude.
Up next: The Carnival returns to Julia Buckley’s blog, Mysterious Musings around the middle of January.