Malla Nunn was born in Swaziland, South Africa, and currently lives in Sydney, Australia. She is a filmmaker with three award-winning films to her credit and is currently at work on her next novel.
Now, a new case for the unpredictable Colonel Vaughn de Vries casts a light on the original enquiry; for him, a personal failure which has haunted him for those seven years and has cost him his marriage and peace of mind.
A former British government agent, friend to De Vries, provides intelligence on this new case, but is any of it admissible? Struggling in a mire of departmental and racial rivalry, De Vries seeks the whole truth and unravels a complex history of abuse, deception and murder. Challenging friends, colleagues and enemies, De Vries comes to realise he doesn't know who is which.
Set against the background of Cape Town and the endless, rolling South African veld, this chilling thriller reveals layer after layer of abuse - physical, political and psychological.
Shortlisted for the Crime Writer's Association Gold Dagger 2014 (Crime Novel of the Year)
Praise for Paul Mendelson:
'An excellent, uncompromising crime thriller made even better by its setting ... the story is two journeys in one, and I'm glad I took both' Lee Child
'A jaw-droppingly brilliant crime thriller. Imagine The Killing moved to Cape Town and into the landscape of the hot and dusty African veld' Philip Glenister
'The First Rule of Survival is an incredibly atmospheric, complex and dazzling debut from a thrilling and authentic new voice in crime fiction' Brian McGilloway
'An impressive debut' The Times
Things go from bad to worse though when a group of nouveau riche ex-slaves hire him to outwit a fortune-hunting redhead, whose husbands have a habit of dying accidently, leaving him up against a female contortionist, her extra-friendly snake, indigestible cakes and rent racketeers. And, all the while, trying to lure Helena Justina to live with him, a dangerous proposition given the notorius instability of Roman real estate. In a case of murder as complicated as he ever faced, this Lindsey Davis' classic tale Venus in Copper shows Falco at his very finest.
To Falco, an undercover tour of Germania is an assignment from Hades. On a journey that only a stoic could survive, Falco meets with disarray, torture, and murder. His one hope: in the northern forest lives a powerful Druid priestess who perhaps can be persuaded to cease her anti-Rome activities and work for peace. Which Falco is eagerly hoping for as, back in Rome, the Titus Caesar is busy trying to make time with Helena Justina, a senator's daughter and Falco's girlfriend.
Lindsey Davis' historical mystery Iron Hand of Mars is a "Seamless blending of humor, history and adventure" (Publishers Weekly).
A dangerous brush with the Brother, the sinister ruler of Nabataean Petra, sends Falco and his girlfriend Helena on a fast camel ride to Syria. Here they join a traveling theatre group, which keeps losing members in nonaccidental drownings. The bad acting and poor audiences are almost as bad as the desert and its scorpions-then as the killer hovers, Falco tries to write a play...