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The Crack Magazine


The Sound of Her Voice

Nathan Blackwell, Orion

Matt Buchanan – the detective in Nathan Blackwell’s New Zealand set novel – tells us on more than one occasion over the course of this book that real life police work is nothing like you see on TV or in the movies. Blackwell (not actually his, or her, real name) had a decade long career with the New Zealand police force and here brings a real ring of authenticity to proceedings. Buchanan is the self-deprecating protagonist who is haunted by events from his past. These include having a colleague die in his arms after being shot, and a case involving a missing young woman who walked out of her home one day and never came back. In the present day he’s investigating the recently discovered body of a woman who turns out to have been in situ for ten years or more and who has all the hallmarks of being linked to previous cases. The deeper Buchanan wades into this swamp the murkier it gets, which makes for grim but compelling reading. 

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