Rhodes > South African Crime Fiction Archive > Primary Texts M-Z

Primary Texts M-Z


Author Details


Detective & Paratext


Mabaso, Themba. The Mosquito Plot. Johannesburg: Heinemann, 1995.
-------. The Village Rescuers. Isando: Heinemann, 1994. 

With activities designed by Jill Wenman; 1994 illustrations by Lois Neethling.



Macaskill, Glenn. King’s Gold: An Epic Adventure Midst the Ruins of Zimbabwe. Johannesburg: Crest Publishing, 2003.
-------. Crime Lords: The Scourge of Southern Africa. Johannesburg: Crest Publishing, 2006.
-------. Of Royal Blood: A 19th Century Assassin. Johannesburg: Crest Publishing, 2006.

Author, publisher

Adventure / thriller

Of Royal Blood later published as Kill Victoria!


Macgregor, Joanne.  Dark Whispers. Pretoria: Protea Boekhuis, 2014.

Other works for YA



Mackenzie, Jassy. My Brother's Keeper. Cape Town: Umuzi, 2009.
-------. Pale Horses. Cape Town: Umuzi, 2012.
-------. Random Violence. Cape Town: Umuzi, 2008.
-------. Stolen Lives. Cape Town: Umuzi, 2010.
-------. Worst Case / The Fallen. Cape Town: Umuzi, 2011.

Author. Other works not crime.


PI Jade de Jong & David Patel.


Mackinnon, Clark. Leopard Valley. London: Long, 1963.


Set in Rhodesia and the Transvaal


Maimane, Arthur. Victims / Hate No More. London: Busby, 1976.

Important local author. Wrote as Arthur Mogale. Also had a short story series in Drum in 1953.


Detective Chester O. Morena aka The Chief. Re-ed by Kwela in 2000.


Makholwa, Angela. Black Widow Society. Johannesburg: Pan Macmillan, 2013.
-------. Red Ink. Johannesburg: Pan Macmillan, 2007.

PR consultant

Thriller / chick-lit


Mangole, Mpho. Destructive Legacy. Johannesburg: Heinemann, 1996.




Mannheim, Linda. Risk. Johannesburg: Penguin, 2006.


About the TRC


Marnewick, Chris. A Sailor’s Honour. Cape Town: Umuzi, 2011.
-------. Shepherds & Butchers. Cape Town: Umuzi, 2008.
-------. The Soldier Who Said No. Cape Town: Umuzi, 2010.

Retired advocate & author. Other works in Afrikaans & true crime.


Johannesburg University Prize & K Sello Duiker Prize. Cop Pierre de Villiers.


Martin, Ian. Pop-Splat. Gansbaai: Hubris, 2008.




Marsh, Rob. Beasts of Prey. Johannesburg: Jacana, 2009.
-------. The Serpent Under. Johannesburg: Jacana, 2003.

Also true crime author


2009 Captain Russell Kemp. Also published by Human & Rousseau.


Masemola, Thabo Nkosinathi. Mixed Signals. Johannesburg: Skotaville, 1993.

Now a scriptwriter. MA in Creative Writing.


Bertrams VO Prize for African literature (co-sponsored by Skotaville)


McClure, James. Imago: A Modern Comedy of Manners. New York: Penzler Books. 1988.
-------. Rogue Eagle. London: Macmillan, 1976.
-------. Snake. London: Gollancz, 1975
-------. The Artful Egg. New York : Pantheon, 1984
-------. The Blood of an Englishman: A Kramer and Zondi Novel. London: Macmillan, 1980.
-------. The Caterpillar Cop. 1972. Harmondsworth: Penguin, 1982.
-------. The Gooseberry Fool. New York: Harper & Row, 1974.
-------. The Song Dog. London: Faber and Faber, 1991
-------. The Steam Pig. London: Gollancz, 1971.
-------. The Sunday Hangman. New York: Pantheon, 1977.

SA author, moved to UK

Police / mystery

Set in Trekkersburg (Pietermaritzburg); detectives Tromp Kramer & Michael Zondi. Rogue Eagle won the CWA Silver Dagger & The Steam Pig won the Golden Dagger. Also published by Coronet, Soho Crime, The Mysterious Press, and Avon


Mendelson, Paul. The First Rule of Survival. London: Constable & Robinson, 2014.
-------. The Serpentine Road. London: Constable & Robinson, 2015.

Other works mostly non-fiction


Police Vaughn de Vries & Dan February


Meyer, Deon. 7 Days. London: Hodder & Stoughton, 2012.
-------. Blood Safari. London: Hodder & Stoughton, 2009.
-------. Cobra. London: Hodder & Stoughton, 2014.
-------. Dead at Daybreak. London: Hodder & Stoughton, 2000.
-------. Dead Before Dying. London: Hodder & Stoughton, 1999.
-------. Devil’s Peak. London: Hodder & Stoughton, 2007.
-------. Heart of the Hunter. London: Hodder & Stoughton, 2004.
-------. Icarus. London: Hodder & Stoughton, 2015.
-------. Thirteen Hours. London: Hodder & Stoughton, 2010.
-------. Trackers. London: Hodder & Stoughton, 2011.
-------. Wie Met Vuur Speel. Cape Town: Tafelberg, 1994.

Afrikaans thriller writer


Detectives Mat Joubert, Zed van Heerden, Benny Griessel & Lemmer. Also published by Coronet, Grove Press; all Afrikaans titles Tafelberg, now Human & Rousseau.


Mhlope, A. A Picture of Innocence. London: Macmillan Pacesetters, 1996.




Miller, Stanley. The Kruger Millions. Cambridge: Vanguard, 2004.


Milne, Shirley. False Witness. London, Hale. 1964. 
-------. The Hammer of Justice. London: Robert Hale, 1963.
-------. Stiff Silk. London: Robert Hale, 1962.


Mitford, Bertram. A Frontier Mystery. London: Ward, 1905.
-------. Renshaw Fanning’s Quest. London: Chatto & Windus, 1894.
-------. The Sign of the Spider. London: Methuen, 1897.
-------. The Weird of Deadly Hollow: A Tale of the Cape Colony. London: FV White, 1899.
Et al.

UK writer who lived in SA, most novels set in SA.



Miyeni, Eric. The Release. Cape Town: Umuzi, 2012.

Actor & author. Other works not crime.



Mokae, Gomolemo. The Secret in My Bosom: A Novel. Johannesburg: Vivlia, 1996.

Author of textbooks, non-fiction, non-English


Colonel Makena. Filmed for TV.


Morley, Des. The House at Hungry Mountain. London: Robert Hale, 2001.
Et al.

SA born


Morris, Peter. Bad City. Johannesburg: Real African Publishers, 2013.


Thriller / noir


Munitich, Brenda. Ben's Buddy. Pretoria: De Jager-HAUM, 1987.
-------. The Jabulani Mystery. Pretoria: Daan Retief, 1986.

1986 illustrations by Hettie Saaiman



Mzobe, Sifiso. Young Blood. Cape Town: Kwela Books, 2010.


Crime/ gangster

Sunday Times Fiction Prize in 2011.


Nick, Paige. Death by Carbs. N.p. Bookstorm, 2016.


Detective Bennie September. Spoof of Tim Noakes’ The Real Meal Revolution.


Nicol, Mike. Black Heart. Cape Town: Umuzi, 2011.
-------. Killer Country. Cape Town: Umuzi, 2010.
-------. Of Cops and Robbers. Cape Town: Umuzi, 2013.
-------. Payback. Cape Town: Umuzi, 2008.
-------. Power Play. Cape Town: Umuzi, 2015.

Author & editor of CrimeBeat. Other works not crime


Security operatives Mace Bishop & Pylon Buso


Nicol, Mike and Joanne Hichens. Out to Score. Cape Town: Umuzi, 2006.


Hard-boiled thriller

PI (former cop) Mullet Mendes & Vincent Saldana. Published in the USA as Cape Greed under pseudonym Sam Cole with Joanne Hichens.


Niesewand, Peter. A Member of the Club. London: Secker & Warburg, 1979.
-------. Scimitar. London: Secker & Warburg, 1983.
-------. The Underground Connection. London: Secker & Warburg, 1978.

SA born journalist; worked in Zimbabwe. Other works not crime.

Spy / thriller

Set in SA. 1979 Member banned. Also published by Pan.


Nkosi, Lewis. Mating Birds. New York: Harper & Row, 1987.
-------. Underground People. Cape Town: Kwela, 2003.

Protest writer

Political thrillers / literary fiction


Nunn, Malla. A Beautiful Place to Die. Sydney : Macmillan, 2008.
-------. Let The Dead Lie. Johannesburg: Picador Africa, 2010.
-------. Present Darkness. Sidney: Pan Macmillan Australia, 2014.
-------. Silent Valley / Blessed are the Dead. Sydney: Pan Macmillan Australia, 2012.

Swaziland-born author, now lives in Australia.


Detective Sergeant Emmanuel Cooper. Set in 1950s SA. Also published by Picador Africa, Atria, and Washington Square Press.


O’Keefe, Bob. Diamonds can be Dangerous. Pretoria: Spearhead, 1953.
-------. Game without Reserve. Johannesburg: Dassie Books, 1957.
-------. Gold without Glitter. Johannesburg: Dassie Books, 1957.

Non-fiction writer, historian


IDB, PI & policemen. Dassie Books also CNA (Central News Agency)


One Who Was In It. Kruger’s Secret Service. London: John Macqueen, 1900.

Aka Douglas Blackburn, SA journalist.


Available online


Orford, Margie. Blood Rose: A Clare Hart Novel. Cape Town: Oshun, 2007.
-------. Daddy's Girl. Cape Town: Jonathan Ball, 2009.
-------. Gallows Hill. Cape Town: Jonathan Ball, 2011.
-------. Like Clockwork. Cape Town: Oshun, 2006.
-------. Water Music. Cape Town: Jonathan Ball, 2013.


Mystery / thriller

Clare Hart


Otter, Charlotte. Balthasar’s Gift: A Maggie Cloete Mystery . Cape Town: Modjadji, 2014.
-------. Karkloof Blue. Cape Town: Modjaji, 2016.

Journalist. First published in German.


Crime reporter Maggie Cloete


Packer, Joy. The Dark Curtain. London: Methuen, 1971.
Et al.

Very successful adventure writer


Set in SA. Often historical romance, but also crime elements.


Park, Tony. Far Horizon. Sydney: Pan Macmillan Australia, 2005.
-------. The Hunter. London: Quercus, 2014.
-------. Silent Predator. Sydney: Pan Macmillan Australia, 2008.

Lives in South Africa and Australia.


Patterson, A. L. I See the Moon. Johannesburg: Writers Inc, 2003.

Author & writing training. (Amanda).


Detective Craig McCloud


Penrose, Margaret. Death on the Files. London: John Long, 1961.
-------. The Fatal Fifth. London: John Long, 1963.

Pseudonym of Margaret Errington


Peter, John. Along that Coast. New York: Doubleday, 1964.
-------. Runaway. New York: Doubleday, 1969.
-------. Take Hands at Winter. New York: Doubleday, 1967.

SA-born author, moved to Canada.


Along That Coast banned – racial tensions, violence. Winner of Doubleday Canadian Novel Prize.


Phillips, Mary. The Day of the Dragon: A Simon Dube Adventure. Johannesburg: Justified Press, 1994.
-------. Wake Not the Wolf: A Simon Dube Adventure. Johannesburg: Justified Press, 1994.

SA writer. Other works not crime. Also wrote under pseudonym Nandi D'lovu.

YA mystery

Simon Dube. Also published by William Waterman.


Pitt, Bridget. The Unseen Leopard. Cape Town: Human & Rousseau, 2010.

Zimbabwe-born author. Other works not crime.

Literary fiction


Preston-Whyte, Robert. Revenge Cannot Wait. Durban: Writers Circle, 2009.


Also published by Osborne Porter Literary Services


Proctor, Elaine. The Savage Hour. London: Quercus, 2014.


Rabie, Sue. Blood at Bay. Cape Town: Human & Rousseau, 2010.
-------. Fallout. Cape Town: Human & Rousseau, 2011.
-------. The Boston Snowplough. Cape Town: Human & Rousseau, 2008.

School librarian


David Roth


Reeve, Brian. A Dangerous Game. Lewes, East Sussex: Book Guild, 2005.
-------. Dark Intent. Lewes, East Sussex: Book Guild, 2008.
-------. Deadly Instinct. Lewes, East Sussex: Book Guild, 2009.

SA-born author


Martial arts expert Steiner, former police officer Krige


Roberts, David. One Man’s Shadow. Johannesburg: Olive Tree Publishers, 2012.



Eco themes


Roland, Consuelo. Lady Limbo. Johannesburg: Jacana, 2013.

Other works not crime

Literary mystery

Seen as first in a trilogy


Rowe, Michele. Hour of Darkness. Cape Town: Penguin, 2015.
-------.What Hidden Lies. Johannesburg: Penguin, 2013.


Police procedural

Detective Persephone Jonas & Dr Marge Labuschagne. Crime Writers Association prize 2011.


Sabelo, George. Scar of the Tigers: A Skip Dlamini Thriller. Pietermaritzburg: Shuter & Shooter, 1983.
-------. Target: The President. Pietermaritzburg: Shuter & Shooter, 1983.



Skip Dlamini, SA’s “first black detective”


Sampson, Victor. The Murder of Paul Rougier. London: Herbert Jenkins, 1928.


Schimmel, Gail. Whatever Happened to the Cowley Twins? Cape Town: Kwela, 2013.

Other works not crime



Scholefield, Alan. A View of Vultures. London: Heinemann, 1966.
-------. The Sea Cave. London: Heinemann, 1983.
-------. Dirty Weekend. London: Macmillan, 1990.
-------. Thief Taker. London: Macmillan, 1991.
 + Many more titles

Lives in UK; born & brought up in SA. Aka Lee Jordan.


Detective Superintendent Gordon Macrae & Leopold Silver


Schuster, Anne. Foolish Delusions. Johannesburg: Jacana, 2005.

Writing training

Literary fiction

Researcher Anna Bertrand


Scobie, Alastair. The Cape Town Affair. London: Cassell, 1952.


Sherlock, Christopher. Call of the Lion. London: Heinemann, 1993.
-------. Eye of the Cobra. London: Heinemann, 1992.
-------. Hyena Dawn. London: Heinemann, 1990.
-------. Night of the Predator. London: Heinemann, 1991.

UK author who emigrated to SA.

Thriller / adventure


Singh, Anirood. “Road to Redemption.” Thesis, Rhodes U, 2013.


MA in creative writing


Slovo, Gillian. Catnap. London: Michael Joseph, 1994.
-------. Close Call. London: Michael Joseph, 1995.
-------. Death by Analysis. London: Women’s Press, 1986.
-------. Death Comes Staccato. London: Women’s Press, 1987.
-------. Morbid Symptoms: A Murder Mystery. London : Pluto, 1984.
-------. Red Dust. London : Virago, 2000.
-------. The Betrayal. London: Michael Joseph, 1991.
 Et al.

SA origins, but lives in UK. Other works not crime.

Mystery / literary fiction

Kate Baeier, PI. Also published by Debner Books, W. W. Norton.


Smith, Roger. Capture. London: Serpent’s Tail, 2012.
-------. Dust Devils. London: Serpent’s Tail, 2011.
-------. Ishmael Toffee. London: Serpent’s Tail, 2012.
-------. Man Down. London: Serpent’s Tail, 2014.
-------. Mixed Blood. New York: Henry Holt & Co, 2009.
-------. Sacrifices. London: Serpent’s Tail, 2013.
-------. Wake Up Dead. London: Serpent’s Tail, 2010.



Some feature Disaster Zondi & Rudi Barnard. Ishmael Toffee is a novella. Also published by Jacana.


Smith, Topsy. The Day the Bus Vanished. Cape Town: Nasionale Boekhandel, n.d.




Stander, Siegfried. Flight from the Hunter. Boston: Gollancz, 1977.
-------. Into the Winter. London: Arrow Books, 1983.
-------. Leopard in the Sun. London: Arrow Books, 1979.
-------. The Fortress. Boston: Gollancz, 1972.

SA writer & journalist

Political thrillers

Set in SA. Also Afrikaans novels & non-fiction. Also published by Houghton Mifflin.


Stanley, Michael. A Carrion Death. London: Headline, 2008.
-------. A Deadly Trade. London: Headline, 2009.
-------. A Death in the Family. London: Orenda Books, 2015.
-------. Deadly Harvest: A Detective Kubu Mystery. New York: Bourbon Street Books, 2013
-------. Death of the Mantis. London: Headline, 2011.
-------. Detective Kubu Investigates: A Collection of Stories. [Self-pub.], 2013. Kindle Edition.
-------. The Second Death of Goodluck Tinubu. New York: HarperCollins, 2009.

Writing duo Michael Sears & Stanley Trollip


Botswana; Detective Kubu


Starke, Roland. Freedom Ceremony. London: Macdonald’s, 1967.

SA writer. Other works not crime.


“Set in the arid, bigoted world of Southern African politics”. Also published by Triton Books.


Swanson, Donald. The Freedom Killers. London: Peter Davies, 1961.
-------. Highveld, Lowveld and Jungle. Johannesburg: Dassie Books, 1956.

Well-known film-maker. Other works not crime.


Highveld, Lowveld and Jungle is a short story collection.“Murder in the Game Reserve”. Dassie Books also CNA (Central News Agency)


Taylor, Jane. Of Wild Dogs. Cape Town: Double Storey, 2005.
-------. The Transplant Men. Cape Town: Double Storey, 2009.

Scriptwriter & curator

Mystery / literary fiction

Olive Schreiner Prize 2006; “a whodunnit with local flavour and postmodern flair” (front cover)


Temple, Peter. Bad Debts. San Francisco, Calif.: MacAdam, 2005.
-------. Black Tide. Sydney : Bantam, 2000.
-------. The Broken Shore. London: Quercus, 2006.
-------.  Dead Point. London: Quercus, 2008.
-------. An Iron Rose. Sydney: HarperCollins, 1998.
-------. Truth. Melbourne, Vic.: Text Publishing, 2009.
-------. White Dog.  Melbourne: Text Publishing, 2004.

Born in South Africa, moved to Australia, former journalist.


Truth won the Miles Franklin Literary Award; White Dog won the Ned Kelly Award for crime fiction. Also published by Cage.


Tlholwe, Diale. Ancient Rites. Cape Town: Kwela Books, 2008.
-------. Counting the Coffins. Cape Town: Kwela Books, 2011.



SA Literary Award. PI Thabang Maje.


Turner, Jann. Heartland. London: Orion, 1997.
-------. Southern Cross. London: Orion, 2002.

Author & film director

Mystery / bildungsroman


Tyne, John M. Footprints in the Frost. Kloof: Writers' Circle Publishing, [2007]


Uys, Ian. The Comrades. Germiston: Uys Publishers, 1987.

Amateur historian. Other works not crime (mostly non-fiction, history).




Van den Berg, Zirk. Nobody Dies. Auckland: Random House NZ, 2004.

Originally Afrikaans writer. Emigrated to NZ in 1998.


Available later in Afrikaans as ’n Ander Mens.


Van der Merwe, Carel. No Man’s Land. Cape Town: Umuzi, 2007.
-------. Shadow. Cape Town: Umuzi, 2012.

Author in Afrikaans & English. Other works not crime.

Suspense / thriller

Security operative Paul du Toit


Van Rensburg, Helen and Louwrens. Death in a Dark Pool. London: Michael Joseph, 1954.
-------. The Man with Two Ties. London: Michael Joseph, 1955.
-------. The Siege of Aunt Estelle. London: Macmillan, 1958


Thriller / mystery

Set in Swaziland & SA. Amateur detective.


Van Staden, Jef. Lone Fighter. Johannesburg: Vivlia, 1993.
-------. Showdown. Johannesburg: Vivlia, 1992.



Set in SA, Horn of Africa


Van Straten, Cicely. Caddie for a Crook. Pretoria: Juventus, 1980.




Van Zyl, P. R. The Prosecutor. New York: Berkeley, 1974.

SA writer & lawyer


Blurb: “A prosecutor in love with the woman he’s sworn to convict – the most shattering courtroom drama since Anatomy of a Murder!” Also published by Putnam.


Veeran, Naresh. 31 Million Reasons. Durban: Niche Media Network, 2007.


Venter, Al J. Soldier of Fortune. London: WH Allen, 1980.

SA non-fiction writer



Villiers, M. D. City of Blood. Cape Town: Random House, 2013.

SA author living in London. (Martie)



Vladislavic, Ivan. 101 Detectives. Cape Town: Umuzi, 2015.

Author, other works not crime.

Literary fiction


Von Klemperer, Margaret. Just a Dead Man. Johannesburg: Jacana, 2012.

Editor & journalist


Amateur detective


Walton, Chris. Sound Bites: A Novel. Johannesburg: Jacana Media, 2006.


Walus, Yvonne Eve. Murder @ Play. N. p.: Echelon Press, 2009.
-------. Murder @ Work. N. p.: Echelon Press, 2004.

Lives in NZ. Other works not crime.


Christine Chamberlain. Self-pub.


Watson, Mary. The Cutting Room. Cape Town: Penguin, 2013.


Psych thriller


Webster, Elizabeth Charlotte. Pot Holes; An Adventure of the Diamond Fields. Johannesburg: Dassie Books, 1927.

SA writer. Other works not crime.


Also published in England by Chapman & Hall. Dassie Books also CNA (Central News Agency)


West, Nick. Absence of Innocence. Hertford, England: Authors Online, 2006.


Westrup, William. Shadows in the Water. London: John Lang, 1929.

UK-born writer lived in SA. Other works not crime.


Wiles, Frank J. Hell of Make Believe. London: Research Publishing, 1978.

Lived in SA


Set in SA


Williams, Michael. Hijack City: A Jake Mulligan Mystery. Cape Town: OUP SA, 2009.
-------. The Eighth Man: A Jake Mulligan Mystery. Cape Town: OUP SA, 2002.
-------. Who Killed Jimmy Valentine? Cape Town: OUP SA, 1997.



Jake Mulligan, Cape Town Murder & Robbery. Winner of Percy FitzPatrick Award 2004.


Xenopoulos, Rahla. Bubbles: A Novel. Johannesburg: Penguins, 2012.

Other works not crime

True crime / thriller


Zaffron, Morad. The Cure. Johannesburg: Real African Publishers, 2013.

Doctor & author

Medical thriller



Additional Authors


Mukoma wa Ngugi (Kenyan author) is being published by Kwela in Cape Town (titles Nairobi Heat and Killing Sahara). C. M. Elliott, Sibanda and the Rainbird and Sibanda and the Death’s Head Moth (set in Zimbabwe, published SA?)


Afrikaans authors increasingly available in English, e.g. Karin Brynard.


Meshack Masondo has a slew of crime novels to his name. He is much degreed with an MA dissertation on ‘The detective novel in Zulu: Form and theme in C.T. Msimang’s Walivuma Icala’. Currently he works as a publishing manager with Macmillan in Johannesburg.
Novels: Iphisi Nezinyoka (1990), Isigcawu Senkantolo (1990), Ingwe Nengonyama (1994), Ingalo Yomthetho (1994), Kanti Nawe? ( 1995), and Ngaze Ngazenza (1994).


Sepedi Crime Fiction as detailed by Professor M J Mojalefa. For his paper see http://www.up.ac.za/dspace/bitstream/2263/5790/1/Mojalefa_Mystery(2007).pdf


Last Modified :Fri, 12 Aug 2016 10:43:10 SAST