2019 Best Crime Novel to NZSA veteran: Dame Fiona Kidman
Dame Fiona Kidman gave a moving acceptance speech for Best Novel:
The winner was This Mortal Boy, by Dame Fiona Kidman – which also took out the Acorn Foundation Fiction Prize at the Ockham New Zealand Book Awards this year. This Mortal Boy was written about the second to last hanging in New Zealand. A young man, Albert Black, killed another in a fight; prompting concern about youth out of control in the 1950s : a concern that the justice system felt impelled to answer with the harshest penalty.
“I’m a crime writer by accident. This Mortal Boy is a crime, rather than a murder story. Albert Black’s death was a crime. I want to remember Albert Black and his mother, who tried so hard to save his life, and his daughter, born three months after his death. As a result of this book, we found her relatives. I also want to thank (husband) Ian Kidman (who died just before the book was published), who was very much a part of it.”
Best First Novel:
The winner was: Call Me Evie by J.P Pomare. Call Me Evie is a thriller: the compelling story of a woman held captive for acts she can’t remember; unsure if her sometimes violent captor has her best interests at heart. In an exceptional achievement, J.P. was nominated in two categories. He is based in Melbourne.
The winner was: The Short Life and Mysterious Death of Jane Furlong, by court reporter and STUFF journalist Kelly Dennett – the poignant story of the abduction of a young woman in Auckland, who featured on the television series Sensing Murder.