Related to: 'Deon Meyer'

Hodder & Stoughton

Fever

Deon Meyer
Authors:
Deon Meyer

'UK readers, you have a nice surprise coming. No, not Brexit, FEVER, by Deon Meyer. Reminiscent of THE STAND and THE PASSAGE. Great stuff' STEPHEN KINGI want to tell you about my Father's murder.I want to tell you who killed him and why.This is the story of my life.And the story of your life and your world too, as you will see.Nico Storm and his father drive across a desolate South Africa, constantly alert for feral dogs, motorcycle gangs, nuclear contamination. They are among the few survivors of a virus that has killed most of the world's population. Young as he is, Nico realises that his superb marksmanship and cool head mean he is destined to be his father's protector.But Willem Storm, though not a fighter, is a man with a vision. He is searching for a place that can become a refuge, a beacon of light and hope in a dark and hopeless world, a community that survivors will rebuild from the ruins. And so Amanzi is born. Fever is the epic, searing story of a group of people determined to carve a city out of chaos.

Hodder & Stoughton

Icarus

Deon Meyer
Authors:
Deon Meyer

After 602 days dry, Captain Benny Griessel of the South African police services can't take any more tragedy. So when Benny is called in to investigate a multiple homicide, it pushes him close to breaking point - a former friend and detective colleague has shot his wife and two daughters, then killed himself. Benny wants out - out of his job, his home and his relationship with his singer girlfriend, Alexa. He moves into a hotel and starts drinking. Again.But Benny's unique talent is urgently required to help investigate another crime - the high profile murder of Ernst Richter, MD of a new tech startup, Alibi, whose body is discovered buried in the sand dunes north of Cape Town. Alibi is a service that creates false appointments, documents and phone calls to enable people to cheat on their partners. It has made Richter one of the most notorious people in South Africa. Can Benny pull together the strands of his life in time to catch the killer?

Hodder & Stoughton

Cobra

Deon Meyer
Authors:
Deon Meyer

Why would a mathematics professor from Cambridge University, renting a holiday home outside Cape Town, require a false identity and three bodyguards? And where is he, now that they are dead? The only clue to the bodyguards' murder is the snake engraved on the shell casings of the bullets that killed them. Investigating the massacre, Benny Griessel and his team find themselves being drawn into an international conspiracy with shocking implications. It seems it is not just the terrorists and criminals of Britain and South Africa who may fear the Professor's work, but the politicians too. As the body count begins to spiral viciously, Benny must put his new-found love life aside and focus on finding the one person who could give him a break in the case: a teenage pickpocket on the run in the city. But Benny is not the only person hunting for Tyrone Kleinbooi . . . Relentlessly suspenseful, topical, hard-hitting and richly rewarding, COBRA is a superb novel from an author who is acclaimed around the world as a brilliant voice in crime fiction.

Hodder & Stoughton

7 Days

Deon Meyer
Authors:
Deon Meyer
Hodder Paperbacks

Trackers

Deon Meyer
Authors:
Deon Meyer

Milla has finally escaped her abusive husband, only to find herself at the heart of an anti-terrorist operation.Lemmer has agreed to protect a pair of smuggled rhinos on a thousand-kilometre journey - his strangest job yet will also be his most dangerous.And former policeman Mat already wants to quit his new job as a private investigator. But he has promised a young woman he will find her missing husband . . . wherever the trail may lead.From the vibrant streets of Cape Town to the wilds of Zimbabwe, from luxurious gated communities to the ganglands of the Cape Flats, different paths begin to cross in a novel of ever-increasing suspense.

Hodder Paperbacks

Dead at Daybreak

Deon Meyer
Authors:
Deon Meyer

An antiques dealer is burned with a blowtorch and executed with a single shot to the back of the head. The only clues at the scene are a scrap of paper and an unusual choice of gun.Ex-cop Zatopek 'Zed' van Heerden has just seven days to solve the case - an almost impossible task made even harder when he discovers that, until a few years ago, there was no proof that the victim even existed . . .

Hodder Paperbacks

Dead Before Dying

Deon Meyer
Authors:
Deon Meyer

ONE COP. ONE KILLER. TWO CAPTIVES OF THE PAST.Mat Joubert, once a rising star of the South African police force, had it all. Then his wife was murdered, and his hopes died with her. Alcoholic, depressed and overweight, he is a shadow of his former self.Then a new killer appears on the streets of Cape Town, murdering at random. Mat throws himself into the case, viewing it as his last chance for redemption.But, as their shared desire for revenge threatens to destroy both him and the mysterious killer he is hunting, Mat soon learns that he is not the only one with ghosts to lay to rest . . .

Hodder Paperbacks

Heart Of The Hunter

Deon Meyer
Authors:
Deon Meyer

The big man known as 'Tiny' has a past littered with violence and death. An assassin's past that he hopes never to face again.But when his best friend is kidnapped, Tiny suddenly finds himself on the back of a stolen motorbike, speeding away from his child and the woman he loves.Tiny has only 72 hours in which to deliver a computer disk that one group of people would kill to possess, and another would kill to destroy. If he fails, his best friend dies.HEART OF THE HUNTER is the tale of one man's struggle for survival against a corrupt government, a group of bloodthirsty killers and most of all, against his past.

Hodder Paperbacks

Thirteen Hours

Deon Meyer
Authors:
Deon Meyer

Shortlisted for the CWA International Dagger Award 2010They killed her best friend. Now they are chasing Rachel Anderson through the streets of Cape Town. The young tourist doesn't dare trust anyone - except her father, back home in America. When he puts pressure on the politicians, they know that to protect their country's image, they must find Rachel's hiding place before the killers.So Benny Griessel - detective, maverick and father of teenagers himself - has just 13 hours to crack open a conspiracy which threatens the whole country.

Hodder & Stoughton

Blood Safari

Deon Meyer
Authors:
Deon Meyer

Lemmer is a freelance bodyguard for Body Armor, a personal security company in South Africa. Lean, angry, violent, he is way down on the price list where the bargains are to be found.Emma le Roux wants to find her missing brother, who supposedly died twenty years ago, but whom she is convinced she's seen on the news as a suspect in the recent killing of a witch doctor and four poachers. She hires Lemmer to watch her back when she goes looking for answers.As le Roux and Lemmer look for clues in the Lowveld, it becomes clear someone wants to keep them in the dark. Someone who will go to any lengths to stop them asking questions. When they are attacked and almost killed, Lemmer decides to go after whoever is hunting them - against all odds.

Hodder & Stoughton

Devil's Peak

Deon Meyer
Authors:
Deon Meyer

Soldiers never find it easy returning from war. So it is with Thobela Mpayipheli, former freedom fighter, trying to settle back into the new South Africa. But at least he has his boy, an adored companion who is a link to a happier past. Then the boy is taken from Thobela, one of a staggering number of children murdered or abused in South Africa, and Thobela knows only despair...and a cold desire for revenge. Thus is born the vigilante killer known as 'Artemis'. The police respond by putting on the case a man who can't afford to fail. Benny Griessel is on the brink of losing everything -- his job, his family, his self-respect -- and this could be his last chance to drag his life back out of the gutter. And then Benny meets Christine, a young mother working as a prostitute in Cape Town. And something happens that is so frightening, the world can never be the same again, for Benny, for Christine, or for Thobela.

Nick Sayers describes his trip to Edinburgh with Deon Meyer

Deon Meyer in Edinburgh

Edinburgh is such a wonderful city and at Festival time there is excitement round every corner. I went up from London on a flying visit to hear Hodder’s South African bestseller Deon Meyer talk crime fiction with Scottish author Gordon Ferris in a conversation expertly moderated by literary agent Jenny Brown. The enthusiastic audience included Deon’s own agent Isobel Dixon of Blake Friedmann, the eponymous Carole Blake herself, and Ian Rankin, who will himself be sharing a stage with Deon later this year, I believe, in Cape Town. It was an amusing and enlightening evening. At one point, Deon wanted to overcome the impression that writing about crime must be easy if you come from a society so full off crime as South Africa. He said that as a tourist, you would have no greater chance of encountering crime in South Africa than you would in Scotland. Gordon raised a rueful laugh when he said that may not be too much of a recommendation! On a more serious note, Deon said he didn’t feel an explicit responsibility to represent the whole of South African society to the world, but that he enjoyed meeting members of the police service from many different ethnic backgrounds in the course of his research, and trying to portray the way they work together in his fiction. Most violent crime in South Africa, he reminded us, is drink or drug related and involves people related or known to each other - the same rather tawdry tale as in the rest of the world. It’s the novelist’s aim to make his fiction a bit more exciting than the average ‘real’ crime, but to remain true to human behaviour. Gordon spoke very engagingly about his two bestselling series of novels, set in Glasgow in the immediately post-WW2 period, and certainly made me want to read them. With their milieu of the Glasgow Jewish community, it will be interesting to compare them with the late Campbell Armstrong’s Lou Perlman novels, a couple of which I edited when I was at HarperCollins. I’ll be writing a little about Campbell soon, incidentally. It was heartening to know also that Gordon had read Hodder’s Night Song of the Last Tram by Robert Douglas as part of his research, and I greatly enjoyed meeting him. The two authors, whose work is set so far apart in both time and distance, found much common ground in the way they make stories that come out of social situations and both gave every indication that there are many more exciting novels still to come. Later at dinner with distinguished Edinburgh booksellers Claire Leach of Blackwell’s , Marie Moser and Cat Anderson of the Edinburgh Bookshop and Stephen Gourlay of Waterstones, Deon talked about the films he has been making in South Africa. He has directed Last Tango, an Afrikaans-language film based on one of his own short stories (despite speaking perfectly in English, he says he can only write in his native Afrikaans) to considerable acclaim. Furthermore, various options that have been taken out by big studios on the novels for international movies. Fingers crossed that we see Dead Before Dying on the big screen before too long, and Deon back here for a longer visit. Deon’s novel 7 Days is published in paperback on 24 October 2013. You can follow him @MeyerDeon and www.deonmeyer.com Photo: Deon signs books for fans after the talk

My South Africa

Deon Meyer on the new South Africa

If books are windows on the world,1 crime fiction mostly provides a view of the underbelly and back alleys of cities and countries. This is my only genuine regret writing as an author in this genre. Because the real South Africa, the one that I love so passionately, is very different from the narrow and dim view my books probably allow. It is also quite unlike the one you see in those pessimistic fifteen second television news reports in the UK, Europe or Australia. So let me try and set the record straight. My country is breathtakingly beautiful – from the lush, sub-tropical east coast of Kwazulu-Natal, to the serene semi-desert stretching along the Atlantic in the west (which blooms in inde- scribable colour and splendour in Spring). In between, there’s the magnificence of the Lowveld, the Bushveld, the Highveld, the towering Drakensberg mountains, the aching vastness of the Karoo and the dense silence of the Knysna forests . . . Diversity is everywhere. In the climate (mostly perfect sunshine and balmy weather, but we have extremes too, summer highs of more than 50°C in Upington, and winter lows of -15°C in Sutherland – both in the same Northern Cape province), and in the cities (Durban is an intoxicating fusion of Zulu, Indian and British colonial cultures, Cape Town is a heady mix of Malay, Dutch-Afrikaans and Xhosa, Johannesburg is . . . well, modern African-cosmopolitan, utterly unique, and always exciting). The biodiversity of South Africa is truly astonishing. “With a land surface area of 1.2 million square kilometres representing just 1% of the earth’s total land surface, South Africa boasts six biospheres, and contains almost 10% of the world’s total known bird, fish and plant species, and over 6% of the world’s mammal and reptile species.”2 Of course we are also world-famous for our huge collection of wildlife regions and game parks – both public and private – encompassing every possible landscape from deserts to forests, mountains to coast, teeming with wildlife species, including Africa’s Big Five: Leopard, Lion, Buffalo, Elephant and Rhinoceros.3 But most of all, the diversity is in the people who constitute the Rainbow Nation. Our black ethnic groups include the Zulu, Xhosa, Basotho, Bapedi, Venda, Tswana, Tsonga, Swazi and Ndebele.The so-called ‘coloured’ (no, it’s not a derogatory term over here) population is mainly concentrated in the Western Cape region, and come from a combination of ethnic backgrounds including Malay, White, Khoi, San, and Griqua. White South Africans are descendants of Dutch, German, French Huguenots, English and other European and Jewish settlers. And our Indian population came to South Africa as indentured labourers to work in the sugar plantations in the British colony of Natal in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The population of more than fifty million people is made up of African (40.2 million, or 79.5%),White (4.6 million, or 9.0%), Coloured (4.5 million, or 9.0%), and Indian/Asian (1.3 million, or 2.5%). And, having travelled most of the world, I can confidently say, you won’t find friendlier, more hospitable and accommodating people anywhere, irrespective of their race, culture, language or creed. We have nine provinces (Eastern Cape, Gauteng, KwaZulu- Natal, Mpumalanga, Northern Cape, Limpopo, North West, Free State, and Western Cape) and eleven official languages: Afrikaans (13%), English (8%), isiNdebele (1.6%), isiXhosa (18%), isiZulu (24%), Sesotho sa Leboa (9%), Sesotho (8%), Setswana (8%), siSwati (3%),Tshivenda (2%), and Xitsonga (4%).4 Throw all of this together in a democracy not quite twenty years old (a tempestuous teenager, if ever there was one), and you get an effervescent, energetic, dynamic, and often a little chaotic, melting pot – of cultures, people, views, politics, opinions, and circumstance. After the tragedy and oppression of Apartheid, we are still very much coming to terms with – and are sometimes a little overwhelmed by – all the facets of the freedom-diamond. Which means that we argue incessantly, shout, point fingers, blame, accuse, denounce, complain, and criticize, mostly loudly and publicly, like all enthusiastic democrats should. But when our beloved Bafana-Bafana (the national football team), Springboks (our twice World Cup-winning rugby team) or Proteas (the cricket guys) walk onto the field, we stand united, shoulder to shoulder. And mostly, in our day-to-day-lives, we get along rather well. We increasingly study and work and live and love and socialise together, in great harmony. Of course, we have our problems. Poverty is the major one. “There is a consensus amongst most economic and political analysts that approximately 40% of South Africans are living in poverty – with the poorest 15% in a desperate struggle to survive.” However, we are making steady progress. The percentage of the South African population with access to clean drinking water has increased from 62% in 1994, to 93% in 2011. Access to electricity has increased from 34% in 1994, to 84% in 2011.5 In 2010, 13.5 million South Africans benefited from access to social grants, 8.5 million of whom were children, 3.5 million pensioners and 1.5 million people with disabilities. In 1994, only 2.5 million people had access to social grants, the majority of whom were pensioners. And since 1994, 435 houses have been built every day for the poor.6 And you might have heard about our other challenge – South Africa has a bit of a reputation when it comes to crime. I am most definitely going out on a limb here, but having studied the statistics, and looked at the (often unfair) comparisons over the past five years, I honestly believe we don’t quite deserve it. “. . . in relation to the overall risk of victimisation, South Africans are not much more likely to become victims of crime than people in other parts of the world,” Anthony Altbeker recently wrote in a carefully considered and exhaustively researched contribution to the marvellous Opinion Pieces by South African Thought Leaders.7 To put the matter into further perspective: In the two years leading up to the FIFA World Cup held in South Africa in 2010, almost every British, French and German journalist who interviewed me, asked the same question, more or less: “How big a slaughter is it going to be for fans attending the games?” Some were downright accusatory: “How dare you host this magnificent event in such a hazardous country?” A British tabloid even predicted a ‘machete race war’ waiting for visitors.8 And how many soccer fans died during the tournament? None.9 Furthermore, the attendees who were affected by crime-related incidents represented a very meagre 0.009% of the fans. That is far, far less than, for instance, the crime rate in Wales. When World Cup tourists were asked if they would consider visiting South Africa again, 96% said ‘yes’. As a matter of fact, if you are a tourist from the Northern Hemisphere visiting my beautiful country, your chances of becoming a victim of violent crime is less than 0.67%.10 (Compare this to the fact that “the 2011 British Behaviour Abroad Report published by the UK’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) noted that the death rate (including murder and natural causes) of Britons in Thailand was forty-one per 100,000 tourists and for those visiting Germany was twenty-four. Tourists from the UK are far safer visiting South Africa”11 – with just 14.6 per 100,000.12) South Africa’s murder rate dropped by 6.5% in 2010-2011, attempted murder by 12.2%, robbery with aggravating circumstances was down by 12%, and house robberies by 10%.13 Our police services are slowly but surely turning the tide. We struggle with inadequate service delivery, our politicians don’t always live up to our expectations, and our unemployment rate is too high. But our economy is robust, and easily out-performs first-world countries like Greece (no surprise there), Italy, and Spain. South African Tax Revenue has increased from R100 billion in 1994 to R640 billion in 2010. Our debt to GDP ratio is 32% (USA 100%, Japan 200%, UK 90%). (The World Bank recommends a ratio of 60%.) And we are ranked first out of 142 countries in respect of regulation of security exchanges by the World Economic Forum Global Competitiveness Report 2011/12.14 According to the Open Budget Index, South Africa has the most transparent budget in the world. We are the only African country that is a member of the G20. In the Economist Intelligence Unit’s Survey of Democratic Freedom, South Africa ranks 31st out of 184 countries. And according to the Global Competitiveness Report 2010/11, South Africa has the 34th most efficient government out of the 139 countries ranked.15 The number of tourists visiting South Africa has grown from 3.9 million in 1994 to 11.3 million in 2010. South Africa is ranked among the top five countries in the world in respect of tourism growth (growing at three times the global average).16 I could go on. South Africa’s learner-to-teacher ratio improved from 1:50 in 1994 to 1:31 in 2010. According to the Global Competitiveness Report 2011/12, South Africa is ranked 13th out of 142 countries for its quality of management schools. 61% of South African primary school children and 30% of high school children receive free meals as part of the school feeding scheme.17 But none of these facts and figures, as inspiring as they are, will reveal the real reason why I am so unwaveringly optimistic about my country’s future. It is one of the major reasons for the peaceful transition miracle of 1994, it is something woven into the texture of everyday South African life, hidden from the fleeting eyes of foreign journalists on a flying visit, mostly talking only to important folks: The goodwill of ordinary people. Every day, in cities, towns, and tiny villages, small acts of kindness happen between human beings. Individuals who extend a helping hand across racial, cultural, political and linguistic divides, who extend friendship and kindness and empathy. I have been witnessing this for more than forty years, and I absolutely believe it is this goodwill that will carry us through, no matter how challenging the future may be. 1 “Books are the carriers of civilization. Without books, history is silent, literature dumb, science crippled, thought and speculation at a standstill. They are engines of change, windows on the world, lighthouses erected in the sea of time.” - Barbara W. Tuchman, American popular historian and author, 1912-1989. 2 http://www.bcb.uwc.ac.za/envfacts/facts/biosa.htm 3 http://www.sa-venues.com/game_lodges_nationwide_south_afr.htm
 4 http://www.safrica.info/about/facts.htm (percentages rounded off)
 5 http://www.sagoodnews.co.za/fast_facts_and_quick_stats/index.html
 6 Ibid. 7 Penguin, 2011. p. 47.
 8 http://www.dailystar.co.uk/posts/view/129402/WORLD-CUP-MACHETE- THREAT/
 9 http://www.truecrimexpo.co.za/
 10 http://www.info.gov.za/issues/crime/crime_aprsept_ppt.pdf
 11 http://www.issafrica.org/iss_today.php?ID=1394
 12 Ibid.
 13 http://www.sagoodnews.co.za/crime/crime_statistics_show_drop_in_ murder_rate.html
 14 http://www.sagoodnews.co.za/fast_facts_and_quick_stats/index.html 15 Ibid.
 16 Ibid. 17 Ibid.

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Extract

GOLD by Chris Cleave

Read an excerpt of Chris Cleave's GOLD.

Deon Meyer's editor Nick Sayers puts his Afrikaans to the test

Translating Deon Meyer

Are you ready for the weekend? I hope so. I had a lekker time last week watching the World Cup final. My neighbours had a braai in the garden first - Harry burned the flippen sausages, but ag, never mind, it was still lekker. This weekend. I’m at the Harrogate Crime Writing Festival, always a real jol, crime writers are such a moerse social bunch. One thing’s for sure: I’ll be poegaai by the time it’s finished! OK, OK, I admit it… I’ve been reading Deon Meyer again, my favourite South African writer, who peppers his brilliant crime fiction with expressions from his native Afrikaans. (Not quite as many as I used in that first paragraph, don’t worry!) Or I should say his wonderful translator, K.L. Seegers, does the peppering, because Deon writes it all in his first language. This often comes as a surprise to people who have heard him speak so eloquently - in English - at literary festivals like Harrogate and book signings in the UK and America, but Deon says he wouldn’t quite be confident enough to write in a foreign language. And perhaps that sense that we are reading a story with rhythms and expressions that are not originally English is one of the factors that make his work so compelling and enjoyable, such a marvellous window into a different world. One of the things you quickly learn from Deon’s stories, of course, is that Afrikaans is just one of many languages spoken in the ‘Rainbow Nation’ by people with a host of different ethnic and cultural backgrounds - and many of them are represented in the police force in which Deon’s weather-beaten detective, Benny Griessel, serves his country. It is not so long ago that the police, as part of the apparatus of the state, could be described as fighting a war against the ANC, who now govern the country. So for long-serving policemen like Benny, the changes at work must have been tumultuous. However, it’s not just the management structure which has set Benny’s head spinning, as regular readers know. Beset by personal problems, he has allowed alcohol to become his biggest enemy. Still, recent novels have seen him slowly getting the upper hand in his battle with the bottle, becoming a mentor to a new generation of detectives from some of those varied backgrounds, and regaining not just confidence, but also his status as a brilliant investigator. Not to mention the beginnings of a new relationship with the beautiful and talented singer Alexa Bernard - a woman fighting demons of her own, admittedly, but someone who can bring some love back to Benny’s life. (Sometimes more often in one night than he can manage!) So, everything’s moerse - cool. Which brings me back to the question of Afrikaans. Translated fiction has obviously undergone quite a boom in our market in recent years, but I must admit I hadn’t thought much about the technicalities of it until asked to share a panel with Deon and some other writers and critics in Bristol a while ago. Lots of interesting questions were raised, and the one that stays with me is how much should we be trying to explain a foreign country to an English reader, and how much should we just be saying this is an exact translation of a foreign text, use it as a sort of full-immersion experience of another world? Here’s an example. In one of Deon’s novels - I think it’s Trackers - a woman is described as the type who would buy her lunch at Woolies. It turns out that Woolworths in South Africa is a very different proposition from the now-defunct chain of shops in the UK. As I understand it, the brand equates more to Waitrose than its cheap-and-cheerful UK namesake. Do you start changing the text in some explanatory way so that it’s different from what Afrikaans readers have enjoyed, or do you start adding footnotes, or do you just let the reader work it out? So far, we’ve just put a glossary at the back of the recent books - but we would be very happy to receive any thoughts from our readers. Someone has already suggested that we should make it clearer at the front of the book that the glossary is at the end, and that is a simple thing I regret not having done in the first place, so do be in touch with any more ideas. Personally, I love the scattering of Afrikaans words, the sense that I am plunging into a different culture and climate and way of life, but still, the main thing is, these are amongst the finest crime novels being written anywhere in the world. The plots, the characters, the emotions, these things are universal in their appeal. I do urge you to go out and read them. Oh, and did I say that everything is cool for Benny now? I guess that was true until the moment the Cobra killer came on the scene… Deon’s newest novel is right up there with his very best.

A blog by South African thriller master Deon Meyer

7 DAYS

Deon Meyer writes about the relationship he has with Bennie Griessel, the protagonist character of his newest thriller 7 DAYS.

Chapter One

A MOST WANTED MAN, by John le Carré

Read the first chapter of John le Carré's A MOST WANTED MAN.

Simon Trewin writes about the journey to Andrew Miller's 2011 Costa Book of the Year win

A feature by Andrew Miller's literary agent

Andrew Miller's literary agent Simon Trewin writes about the journey from reading Andrew's first submission, to accompanying the author to his Costa Book of the Year win for PURE.

Chapter One

COME SUNDAY, by Isla Morley

Read the first chapter of Isla Morley's COME SUNDAY.