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Dead of Night

Published Date: 16th January 2018

Available in

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EBook
9781912374267
£5.99
15 May 2018
Paperback
9781912374250
£8.99
15 July 2018
Audiobook
Coming Soon

Description

When freelance journalist, Crystal Nguyen, heads to South Africa, she thinks she’ll be researching an article on rhino-horn smuggling for National Geographic, but within a week she’s been hunting poachers, hunted by their bosses, and then arrested in connection with a murder. And everyone is after a briefcase full of money that she doesn’t want, but can’t get rid of…
Fleeing South Africa, she goes undercover in Vietnam, trying to discover the truth before she’s exposed by the local mafia. Discovering the plot behind the money is only half the battle. Now she must convince the South African authorities to take action before it’s too late, both for the rhinos and for her. She has a powerful story to tell, if she survives long enough to tell it…
Fast-paced, relevant and chilling, Dead of Night is a stunning new thriller from Michael Stanley, author of the award-winning Detective Kubu series, introducing an intriguing new protagonist, while exposing one of the most vicious conflicts on the African continent…

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‘Detective David “Kubu” Bengu is a wonderful creation, complex and beguiling. The exotic smells and sounds of Botswana fill the pages as well as the changes and struggles of a country brimming with modern technology yet fiercely clinging to old traditions. Compelling and deceptively written …’ New York Journal of Books

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‘A wonderful, original voice – McCall Smith with a dark edge and even darker underbelly’ Peter James

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‘Under the African sun, Michael Stanley’s Detective Kubu investigates crimes as dark as the darkest of Nordic Noir. Call it Sunshine Noir, if you will – a must read’ Yrsa Sigurðardóttir

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‘This is firmly action thriller territory and it is refreshing to have a compassionate yet resilient woman as the lead character. With her sporting abilities and mental toughness, Crys makes for a plausible action heroine, without being perfect or superhuman in any way. In fact, she makes a few amateur mistakes in her investigation, and that makes her all the more relatable. Her Vietnamese background is not simply an empty ploy to introduce more diverse characters into a story, but plays a crucial part in the plot. The other characters are somewhat paler in comparison, although the opaque head detective Colonel Mabula is intriguing. He also seems to be a deliberate contrast to the more sympathetic Detective Kubu in the authors’ other books … Less police procedural and more action-oriented, quite international in scope, it is a necessary warning to wildlife lovers everywhere’ Crime Fiction Lover

Author

Michael Stanley is the writing team of Michael Sears and Stanley Trollip. Both were born in South Africa and have worked in academia and business. Stanley was an educational psychologist, specialising in the application of computers to teaching and learning, and is a pilot. Michael specialises in image processing and remote sensing, and teaches at the University of the Witwatersrand. On a flying trip to Botswana, they watched a pack of hyenas hunt, kill and devour a wildebeest, eating both flesh and bones. That gave them the premise for their first mystery, A Carrion Death, which introduced Detective ‘Kubu’ Bengu of the Botswana Criminal Investigation Department. It was a finalist for five awards, including the Crime Writers’ Association Debut Dagger. The series has been critically acclaimed, and their third book, Death of the Mantis, won the Barry Award for Best Paperback Original mystery and was a finalist for an Edgar award. Deadly Harvest was a finalist for an International Thriller Writers’ award. A Death in the Family and Dying to Live are the latest in the Detective Kubu series, published in 2017 by Orenda Books.
For information about Botswana, the book and its protagonist, and to sign up for an occasional newsletter, please visit www.detectivekubu.com.
Visit Michael Stanley on Facebook at www.facebook.com/MichaelStanleyBooks, and on Twitter @detectivekubu.

Online Reviews

‘This was a fast, easy read for me that I found very hard to put download. The writing just flows and the story progresses in such a way that I felt fully immersed in the book and intrigued as to how it would all work out. The chapters are quite short which makes it easy to pick up in spare moments to read one more chapter … If you like beautifully described, fast paced thrillers with a great female protagonist then you’ll love this book. I definitely can’t wait to read more from this author’ Over the Rainbow Book Blog 

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‘Crys, despite her will to help her friend and discover what is going on to write her article for National Geographic, never sounds like a super-hero, a clichéd woman who can handle anything. She doubts, her priorities changes, her feelings are all over the place. You can feel her fear, her interest, her wish for things to get better, her hopes and dreams. Her character feels real and courageous in a way only driven woman can be. Rhino-horns smuggling, dead animals, the threat hanging over the heads of animals who just want to be left alone … all of this got me emotional, angry, wishing there was something I could do. The authors are incredibly good at making YOU want to bring change but also allow you to understand a different culture, different point of views, and get a big picture of the issues at hand. Dead of Night is more than crime fiction. It’s a breath-taking mix of adrenaline and current affairs brought to life by colourful characters’ Chocolate N Waffles

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‘The pace was fast and at times quite frenetic, the action relentless as Crys attempted to track down not only the poachers but also her colleague Michael … I loved the way in which the authors described the beauty of the magnificent elephants and rhino, graceful, yet tinged with a danger possessed by all animals in the wild. Vietnam may not have had the same beauty and stunning settings as Africa, yet you could still sense the bustling street and wonderful food aromas that Crys encountered. As I have already mentioned the pace of the novel is frenetic at times and this was especially so as I reached the latter parts. I quickly began to piece all the varying strands together and the authors even threw in a little surprise, that I didn’t guess. This is a wonderful fast paced novel, with settings that set alight your imagination. It is a novel that not only entertains but informs and one that I enjoyed immensely’ My Bookish Blogspot

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Michael Stanley write a guest post about the Rhino war as part of the blog tour. Ronnie Turner

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‘This is a fast paced read that really draws you in to the heat and dust as well as the spectacular wildlife and scenery of the South African national parks and the streets of Ho Chi Minh City. Crys Nguyen is a whirlwind of resourcefulness and courage who is relentless in her pursuit of the truth and full of dogged determination. What she discovers will shake her to her core, the only question is whether or not she can stay alive long enough to write her story. Verdict: A gripping and devastating novel about an important subject, with a feisty protagonist and more action, twists and thrills than you can handle’ Live and Deadly

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‘This book was excellent, a proper thriller! The writing style was spot on, I loved the characters and was completely immersed in the story right from the outset. The settings were brilliant and described so well you felt you were there with them. Crystal is a brilliant characters and I loved her fight and spirit. The story flows very well and it is very well written as I have now come to expect from these authors, they are yet to write a book yet that I haven’t devoured as soon as it has arrived with me! Five stars from me, I really enjoyed it and looking forward to seeing what the writing duo come up with next!!’ Donna’s Book Blog

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‘This is a fast paced thriller with a serious message at its core. It centres on the issue of rhino poaching and takes the reader deeper and deeper into the murky world of the poachers … I loved the African backdrop, present for most of the story, with its inky darkness and inhospitable heat. As an outsider, you see it through Crystal’s eyes and feel her horror at what she has to see. This is such economical writing with no superfluous passages or filler descriptions. The pace of the writing is fast and steady as it twists and turns, with quite a few shocks to jolt the reader. In short: a fast-paced thriller which informs, shocks and engrosses’ Books, Life and Everything

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‘The writing style is rich with descriptive detail of the lands the novel was set in and drew me into the story. I loved how I could feel the African sickness along with Crystal, how a land so rich in beauty, is plagued by corruption and violence, yet the rich tapestry of the wilderness wrapped me in its embrace. I loved how the writers, wove all these elements and delivered a story that was a real page turner and yet encouraged me to wallow not just the story itself, but lands so different to my own. Why would I recommend this book to other readers? Simply because it is exciting, has great characterisation and is set amongst lands that will fascinate and beguile you’ Books Are My Cwtches

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Michael Stanley write a guest post about writing stand alones as part of the blog tour. Have Books Will Read

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‘Reading this book made me feel like asking ‘Michael Stanley, where have you been all my life?’ because this is the first book by this author that I’ve read and really want to read others by him. I understand that more books and other series by this author (actually a pair of authors – see below) have been published, all set in South Africa. I really should have been told. Intense. Tragic. Vivid’ Mrs Bloggs Books

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So, what about Dead of Night? Well, put simply, it’s fucking awesome. It’s a hard- hitting, thoroughly engrossing thriller that rips along at a pace and rhythm completely different to the aforementioned Kubu series and demonstrates just how talented a writing team and adept at different writing styles messers Sears and Trollip are … The levels of complexity and connections in the plot and the fact that such a strong story is rooted in a very real and believable situation make for a real page turner. For me, it’s that combination of fact – rhino hunting and the fight against the poachers is a very violent and deadly fight – and, strong, engrossing fiction that ensures that Dead of Night is compelling and lends it some real clout. Mumbling About

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‘This is a tell it how it is story with no holds barred and boy it is descriptive and brutal both for animal and human. The story brought all my senses alight as two worlds emerged. The one of the tourist, where they only see the beauty to the reality of greedy men with corrupt police that can make someone disappear. I read this book stunned equally with this truly amazing land and sorrow of the plight of these magnificent creatures. Most of all it opens your eyes to the people of this country too. It is easy to judge when you have a full belly and you don’t live in fear. Totally stunning in every ‘sense’ of the word! Absolutely loved this book, definitely moved into my top five for this year’ Books From Dusk Till Dawn

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‘The plot may be intriguing but it is also thoroughly exciting as Crys faces a compelling race against time to stop a heinous plan despite not having all the information about exactly what is planned and never quite knowing who she can trust. Dead of Night is one of the most intelligent, thought-provoking and engaging thrillers I’ve read all year – it’s tense, shocking and only too believable. Michael Stanley’s latest book is a triumph and reinforces their position as being among the best writers of Sunshine Noir around right now’ Hair Past a Freckle

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Dead of Night is a fast-paced thriller, filled with action and conflict, focusing on the politics, cultural clashes and violence associated with the rhino trade. I was totally gripped by the feisty and determined female protagonist Crystal Nguyen, an undercover journalist investigating corruption and bribery. I was also touched emotionally by so many of her scenes, just as shocked as she was by the cruelty she witnessed and the violence she experienced. Yet again, as with many of the Orenda Books thrillers, I came away with important environmental messages in my head and having extended my knowledge of world politics, history and culture. I really do hope this is the start of a series as I’m now desperate for more!’ Off-the-Shelf Books

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‘When reading work by a writing duo, I am always impressed by how they manage to write so smoothly together. Dead Of Night is no exception. The writing is so slick that despite tackling a difficult subject matter, the novel is easy to read and drew me in immediately … One of the central themes in Dead Of Night is rhino poaching, which is a very politically contentious issue in South Africa. I knew absolutely nothing about this prior to reading the novel, and the authors must be credited for researching the issue so well and raising awareness of it in such a compelling way’ Portable Magic

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‘This is a book that makes you stop and think. It was fast-paced and exciting. I’ve never read another book like it before, nor have I read anything by the authors before. With writing as superb as this was I feel I need to pick up some of their earlier work now as this book was truly outstanding’ Whispering Stories

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Michael Stanley write a guest post about where Crystal Nguyen came from as part of the blog tour. Liz Loves Books

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‘There are the poachers, corrupt police and many others to be wary of. There are also those who make their decisions for reasons that are more personal than greed. This is one of those novels that make you open your eyes to a big problem. That if certain practices are not stopped it will be catastrophic for the future. There are many creatures who are at threat due to greed, power and unproven medical uses. don’t know if this is a standalone novel or the first in a series. It works well either way’ Steph’s Book Blog

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‘I wasn’t really sure what to expect when I picked up this book to read. Suffice it to say it was great and had lots of ups and downs. The story was simply amazing and loved the settings and the countries that they chose to use. It was interesting to see a multi country story. I enjoyed the main character thinking they had what it takes to really survive. This to me is a hidden gem and I can’t wait to see what else will come from this duo’ Seans Book Reviews

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‘You get rid of one murderous bully boy and there is always one waiting to replace him. It’s a fast-paced read with a lot of action, and it shines a light on the insidious world of poaching. A world where honour is defined by how long you can resist the pull of the dollar sign. Nothing is sacred and trust is overrated’ Cheryll MM Book Blog

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‘I love when you read a book that you think isn’t really your style & then you’re pleasantly surprised! This was one of those books for me. A very intense story that takes you to lands you know nothin about & you become immersed in their world. Loved the main character, Crys, who was so freaking resilient that you had to admire her bad ass! I’d love to read another story with her for sure!’ Laura Rash

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‘It is rare and laudable for a thriller to raise these kind of questions in the plot and focus on them as important to the world, rather than just as a story device, and I think it is extremely well done. The message manages to come across loud and clear without detracting from the plot at all. I had no idea who was involved in the smuggling and who was not, right up until the very end which is always very satisfying in a thriller and I don’t think I caught my breath properly the whole time I was reading it. It is the best thriller that I have read in a long while and I was sorry when it was finished. I have discovered an exciting, new (to me at least) thriller writer and I can’t wait to read more’ A Little Book Problem

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‘The action and intrigue come thick and fast throughout the book, which is superbly paced. And it all leads to an explosive climax, which I found hugely satisfying … This novel is so current. It’s intelligently written and obviously well researched. All the characters are well drawn, and the settings evocative … As always with a pair of authors, I am fascinated and bewildered by how their writing process works. The writing here is absolutely seamless, as if written by one person, so Michael and Stanley are clearly completely in tune with each other … I loved this book, and would recommend it to anyone who enjoys an intelligent, relevant thriller which packs a punch, or has an interest in Africa or animal conservation. An absolute belter of a book!’ Suze Reviews

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‘Wow! What a ride! I got sucked into this book from the very beginning! Crys is one tough chick! And she’s brave…or stupid. I’m still not sure which … I couldn’t put this book down! It may or may not have been the wee hours of the morning when I finished this book. One.More.Chapter. I’m not sure if we’ll see more of Crys, but I hope we do! And as a side note, the authors are male. Many male authors do not write good female characters. I didn’t feel that way in this book; I thought they did a good job’ The Readathon

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Dead of Night is a fast-paced and tense thriller with all the ingredients that make this team stand out from the crowd, from the setting to the characters to the topic that makes you think and that gets under your skin. I can quite easily see this becoming a series as well, with Crys at the helm. She’s a likeable character and as a journalist, there are undoubtedly many more other hard-hitting topics she could investigate’ Novel Deelights

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‘The writing flowed nicely and the pace was well-set. I really liked the plot twists and the way Michael’s disappearance (not a spoiler- we find out about it in the first 10 pages) seems to be the shadow lurking around every page corner. I have no complaints here! It was awesome. The diversity was amazing and there was one character (the detective) that I absolutely loved! I also very much admire how the author was able to portray different sides of human beings, sometimes even with the same character … I thought the plot was very enjoyable. The nicely executed plot twists paired up with great writing made for a very good reading experience. I really liked it, even if occasionally stuff seemed to go too right … I have to admit that it was a very entertaining read and the issues I did notice weren’t that important in the grand scheme of things. That being said, this book is going to be welcomed into the Nirvana! Andreas Nirvana

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Michael Stanley take part in a Q & A as part of the Dead of Night blog tour. A Crime Readers Blog

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Michael Stanley talk about author influences as a guest post, as part of the Dead of Night blog tour. Bloomin Brilliant Books

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Dead of Night is a brilliant, gripping, fast-paced whirlwind of a read that covers some hard-hitting and relevant issues. Crystal Nguyen is a freelance reporter who is concerned about a fellow journalist friend who has gone missing in South Africa while researching about rhino poaching. Crys persuades National Geographic to hire her to finish off the research for the article and to figure out what has happened to Michael … Dead of Night is a read that isn’t light-hearted, it’s brutal, raw and very hard-hitting. The writing is stunning and gripping, I was hooked to the pages as we got deeper into the poaching world with the characters. A brilliant thriller that is original and relevant, I highly recommend this book’ Katie’s Book Cave

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‘This book is hard hitting, fast paced and full of thrills and action in a way that you would not believe. The authors do not spare the harsh truth of the act of poaching, or of the price that poachers may pay if they are caught … If you would like to read a book which is both entertaining and thought-provoking, which will transport you from the wild African bush to the seedy and corrupt streets of Vietnam, and one which will give you a strong and determined female lead, then do pick this book up. I’d highly recommend it’ Jen Meds Book Reviews

 

Reviews