* Copy courtesy of Scribe Publications *
Australian author Richard Anderson is a farmer from NSW and his experience of life on the land really shines through in his second rural crime novel Boxed. It's a no nonsense mystery thriller with an interesting premise and fast paced plot.
Dave Martin is a farmer beaten down by circumstances. His wife has left him and he's been neglecting his farm in favour of rattling around his run down house and drinking. Dave likes to order cheap tools online to kill the time but he starts to receive boxes in the mail that he didn't order.
The mystery of the boxes and the action that ensues really drives the novel forward and I was quickly caught up in the plot. Growing up in a rural community myself, I could totally relate to the farming district Dave lives in and his movements around the place and interactions with friends and family were 100% authentic Australian.
Boxed is for readers who enjoyed the Aussie settings in A Time to Run or The Twisted Knot by J.M. Peace, The Dry by Jane Harper or Scrublands by Chris Hammer. These are crime novels set in rural Australia from the perspective of a Police Officer, AFP Officer and a journalist all actively investigating crimes. However, Boxed is from the perspective of a bystander who finds himself in a lot of trouble and we the reader, then follow the choices he makes and the consequences of those decisions.
I really began to feel for Dave, and praised and cheered for him when he made a smart decision and cringed in worry for him when he didn't.
Reading Boxed marks the end of a 5 book Australian author binge for #AussieApril (and the two Australian reading challenges I participate in) and it's time to get back to some international authors.
I thoroughly recommend Boxed by Richard Anderson to crime and mystery lovers everywhere and will be keen to check out his next book.
My rating = ****