Ngaio Marsh Awards for Best NZ Crime Writing – Whangarei Libraries Event.

On Thursday June 10, four authors whose books have been part of the Ngaio Marsh Awards for Best NZ Crime writing convened at Whangarei Central Library, greatly entertaining a packed house of crime fiction fans.

Photos here:

Whangārei Mystery in the Library 2021 series
Join five northern authors for an evening of criminally good conversation.

The Ngaio Marsh Awards, in association with Whangārei District Libraries, invites booklovers to a thrilling evening of criminally good discussion with five talented northern storytellers.

Whangārei poet, novelist, and award-winning short story writer Michael Botur will chair a panel featuring fellow 2021 Ngaio Marsh Awards entrant Caroline Lawson, Kerikeri thriller writer Catherine Lea and past Ngaios finalists Andrea Jacka and Stephen Johnson.

The authors will discuss where their inspiration comes from, how they bring fascinating characters to life on the page, craft page-turning storylines and infuse their tales with real-life issues as well as touches of crime and mystery.

Registration Essential
Spaces are strictly limited.
Please register by email to

The panel

Michael Botur is a poet and author whose short stories have won awards in New Zealand and the United States. Takahe magazine described him as “a writer considered one of the most original story writers of his generation in New Zealand”. He’s published several acclaimed short story collections. Crimechurch is his latest novel.

Andrea Jacka – Although an avid reader from the early days of Peter and Jane, it wasn’t until Andrea reached her early forties that she began to write. This soon became a passion, then an obsession and resulted in her first novel One for Another, a thriller set in 1880s Idaho which became a finalist for the Ngaio Marsh Award for Best First Novel.

Stephen Johnson is an Australian-born television news and sports producer who has swapped the TV studio for a writer’s garret overlooking the Tamaki River. His debut novel Tugga’s Mob, a finalist for the 2020 Ngaio Marsh Awards, was inspired by three seasons working as a tour guide on double-decker buses around Europe in the 1980s.

Caroline Lawson is a Northland author who grew up in Fiji. Memories of a Community Cop is ‘more than a biography’, the story of local policeman Quin Turton’s life on and off the job after moving to Northland as a young man. “A delightfully written evocation of a life well lived … a worthy addition to anyone’s library.”

Catherine Lea is a Kerikeri author who worked in the technology industry before becoming a thriller writer. Her six novels range from comic police procedurals to high-octane thrillers entwined with US politics. Her book Child of the State was shortlisted for the Silver Falchion Award for Best Thriller by the Killer Nashville festival in the United States.”

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