Ngaio Marsh Awards 2019: WORD Christchurch

You must be able to write. You must have a sense of form, of pattern, of design. You must have a respect for and a mastery over words.” ― Ngaio Marsh, Death on the Air and Other Stories

One of the four original "Queens of Crime" (along with Agatha Christie, Dorothy L. Sayers, and Margery Allingham), Dame Ngaio Marsh is among the most famous Golden Age mystery writers. She has more than 32 titles to her name, most of them featuring Chief Inspector Alleyn solving gripping crimes. Ngaio Marsh has left an undeniable mark on crime literature and her legacy remains.

A Man Lay Dead

Ngaio Marsh photographed during the 1940s : "Ngaio in the spotlight" [194-], CCL PhotoCD 17, IMG0038
Ngaio Marsh photographed during the 1940s : "Ngaio in the spotlight" [194-], CCL PhotoCD 17, IMG0038
Part of her legacy are the Ngaio Marsh Awards. The first, the Ngaio Marsh Award for Best Crime Novel was founded in 2010, and is awarded for the best mystery, crime, or thriller novel written by a New Zealander (citizen or resident) published during the previous year. The award branched out to include two different categories a number of years later; the Ngaio Marsh Award for First Novel started in 2016, followed by the Ngaio Marsh Award for Best Non Fiction in 2017. 


This year's finalists were announced in early August, and now WORD Christchurch have two fantastic events on Saturday 14 September to get you pumped for the announcement of the winners. 

Meet the Ngaio Marsh Finalists

Saturday 14 September 1pm to 2pm, Free
University of Canterbury Chemistry Building, The Arts Centre

Come and Meet the Ngaio Marsh Finalists in this free daytime event at the Arts Centre. This event features speakers from each of the three award categories: Dame Fiona Kidman, JP Pomare, Liam McIlvanney, Andrea Jacka, Dr Cynric Temple-Camp, Jen Shieff, Scott Bainbridge, and Kelly Lyndon

Enjoy an afternoon of readings from their books, and discussion, all in preparation for the grand announcement.

The Great Ngaio Marsh Game Show & Awards

Saturday 14 September 7.30pm to 9pm, TSB Space, Tūranga, 60 Cathedral Square
 $15/free with season pass.

There's a fun evening in store, The Great Ngaio Marsh Game Show and Awards are sure to entertain with brain teasers and a little funny and friendly competition, as two teams of crime writers compete for the title of 'Sharpest Knives'. Vanda Simon and Paul Cleave captain each of the teams, and are joined by JP Pomare, Liam McIlvanney, Dame Fiona Kidman, and special guest Val McDermid

With the award winners being announced at the end of the evening, come and support your favourites while enjoying a fabulous and entertaining night.  

(photos: Val McDermid, Liam McIlvanney, JP Pomare, Dame Fiona Kidman, Vanda Symon, and Paul Cleave)

Want to read ahead? Check out some of the nominated works

This Mortal Boy

Call Me Evie

The Quaker

One for Another

The Cause of Death

The Vanishing Act

The Great New Zealand Robbery

WORD Christchurch Shifting Points of View

WORD Christchurch presents Shifting Points of View — a spectacular line-up of New Zealand and international speakers to warm you up and get you thinking. Shifting Points of View runs from Sunday 18 August to Saturday 14 September 2019. Visit our page on WORD Christchurch Shifting Points of View for more information, previews, reviews, and WORD reading.