A scorching summer in Cape Town. As fires blaze across the mountain, an evangelist delivers an ominous prophecy, right-wing thugs plot murder and mayhem… and gorgeous Rae Valentine has eyes only for her man, Mullet Mendes.
But Rae can’t outrun the storm of righteous fury that’s taking over the city, and when the heavens open (in more ways than she can imagine) her life takes an unexpected turn.
Before she knows it, she’s a newly badged private investigator with a case of missing jewels on her hands, doing her damndest to keep Mullet’s detective business afloat and his partner, Vince Saldana, off the booze.
As she battles her personal demons, Rae must solve the mystery, outwit the bad guys and rebuild her life…
Compelling, stylish and underscored with pitch-perfect dark humour, Divine Justice brings to life a feisty, sexy, resourceful new heroine – the inimitable Rae Valentine.
A 2011 TOP TEN LITNET READ
“Hichens has written a cracking good crime novel set in familiar landmarks in the Cape and Namibia. An excellent book to take along on holiday.”
– Janet van Eeden-Harrison, Litnet
A 2011 TOP TEN SUNDAY TIMES THRILLER
“Joanne Hichens’s Divine Justice is not for the faint-hearted or squeamish. This is a wonderfully edgy thriller that sears a path through Cape Town’s criminal underbelly like caustic soda.”
- William Saunderson-Meyer, Killer Thrillers
“Rae Valentine is a new star in South African crime writing and so is Hichens. Divine Justice is a gripping thriller that will pull you along page by page to an explosive climax with an unpredictable and surprising twist.”
- Brian Joss, Cape Community Newspapers
“I have to confess that I read Divine Justice twice (it is that good).”
– Mslexia Interview, Kerry Hammerton
“I love Rae, and following the ‘pulling herself up by the armpits’ journey.”
– Itch Interview, Moira Richards
In the dunes a killer buries the bodies of street kids.
Along the coast the abalone wars erupt in murder and firefights as gangs and syndicates battle for the Cape aphrodisiac so prized in the East. The profits are huge; the cost is counted in corpses.
An action-packed crime novel, a forerunner in an exciting genre in contemporary South African writing, Out to Score is set against the backdrop of the abalone wars along the Cape coast. It is the story of two private investigators from a two-bit agency involved in seemingly different cases. Jeffrey Mendes – nicknamed Mullet after his hairstyle – is hired by the wife of a financial consultant who is allegedly soliciting rent boys. Vincent Saldana is contracted to track down a gang who are stealing from an abalone farm. The two cases converge, the action moves from central Cape Town to the suburbs, from east to west coast, as Mullet and Vincent tighten the net on the mastermind behind the scenes a Triad operator named Jim Woo and his accomplices.
Written jointly by Mike Nicol and Joanne Hichens, this fast and gritty thriller brings the world of the hard-boiled PI to Cape Town.
Out to Score was published in the US as Cape Greed in October 2009 under the pseudonym Sam Cole.
Praise for Cape Greed:
“South Africa joins the hard-boiled stakes, and in a wondrous dazzling humorous novel. Imagine Elroy joining forces with Chester Himes, Coffin Ed, and Gravedigger, throw in the spectacular landscape of South Africa, and you’ll get some sense of this wild and daring novel. One prays this is the first in a series – if Tom Sharpe wrote mystery, this would be it.” – Ken Bruen
“Out to Score is a wild, dark, violent, and exotic brew of weary PIs, drug-addled poachers, and master criminals in modern-day Cape Town written by hard-boiled disciples of Elmore Leonard and Ken Bruen. Completely original and appealing.” – C J Box
“A knockout debut. South African authors Nicol and Hichens write better American-style crime fiction than the Americans, capturing the disenfranchised detective with freshness and style. Trust me: this is a rare reading pleasure.” – April Smith
Compiled and edited by Joanne Hichens
This is a collection you’ll want to take to bed with you – for suspense, intrigue, mystery and thrills you can’t beat Bad Company. From the bustling streets of Joburg to the alleyways of Khayelitsha, from the boardroom to the bedroom, Bad Company will entertain you, and keep you hooked, till you turn out the light.
Not only is this collection a feast for lovers of crime/thriller fiction, but it’s a perfect introduction to South African thriller writing for the uninitiated. From the intensity and force of Richard Kunzmann’s If Nothing Else to the subtle mind-games of Andrew Brown’s Occam’s Razor, there is variety to cater for all tastes. With stories by South Africa’s renown writers Deon Meyer and Margie Orford, as well as newer voices, and a first-ever English thriller-story by best-selling Zulu crime-thriller writer Meshack Masondo, a great read is guaranteed.
“They told me there were gold mines in south Africa…look what just came out!”
- Lee Child
This original,entertaining, and, at times, deeply disturbing collection of stories is form proof that South Africa is home to some of the most talented crime and thriller writers working today. Bad Company is classic popular fiction for the 21st century, written from the heart, with zeal, invention, an an unblining eye for honesty that defies all geographical boundaries.”
- David Hewson