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  • Excellent Aussie crime fiction.

    Thin Blood is the first novel by New Zealand-born Australian author, Vicki Tyley. Investigative journalist, Jacinta Deller is out of a steady job and looking for a topic on which she can do a free-lance article. A missing persons poster inspires a general overview article, but a comment from her boyfriend, Brett has her focussing on a specific case. Kirsty Edmonds had gone missing a decade earlier and, despite no body being found, her husband, Craig had been twice tried for her murder, with a hung jury on each occasion. His affair with Kirsty’s younger sister, Narelle Croswell, a million-dollar insurance policy and trace evidence had many convinced of their joint guilt. Brett reveals that Narelle is a credit officer where he works, and that she and Craig had married recently. Jacinta is hooked. An interview with a close friend of Kirsty’s nets her little more information, and when she manages to get closer to Narelle at a social gathering, her initial suspicions about the couple are discarded. Jacinta decides not to pursue the story but, as a personal item of Kirsty’s appears, and then bones are uncovered, it seems the case is intent on pursuing her. Tyley gives the readers characters who are easily believable, the sort we all encounter at work or socially, with virtues and vices in equal measure. Their dialogue is natural and Melbourne locals will attest that she easily evokes her setting. The plot has plenty of turns, distracters and red herrings, and the story is so cleverly constructed that most readers will be pinpointing the murderer, then second-guessing themselves and settling on a new suspect, then repeating the process as a more likely culprit appears. The final twist is excellent, and fans will be eager to read more by this author. Excellent Aussie crime fiction.

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