The Davitt Award winners 2019

Congratulations to the 2019 winners of the Davitt Awards for the best crime books by Australian women.


Adult crime novels

The Rúin by Dervla McTiernan

“If you’re on the hunt for a crime story that’s going to consume every other thought in your head, wring you out like a wet towel, and then deposit you back in the real world with your nerves fried to crisp … You’re in luck. The Rúin is the kind of book that you will inevitably find yourself recommending to every person you know, and probably also that lovely person who makes you coffee.”

Read our full review here


Young adult crime novels

Small Spaces by Sarah Epstein

“I frequently found myself putting it down and glancing nervously at the shadows around me. Small Spaces is good, terrifying fun and I highly recommend it for all brave souls 14+ who love reading.”

Read our full review here


Children’s crime novels

Wakestone Hall by Judith Rossell (Stella Montgomery, Book 3)

Stella Montgomery is in disgrace, and the Aunts have decided there is only one thing to be done. She is to be sent to Wakestone Hall, a grim and dreadful boarding school where the disobedient are tamed and the wilful are made meek. Life at school is lonely and miserable, and when a friend disappears, Stella is determined to find her - no matter the dangers that certainly lie ahead…

Read our review of the first book in the series here


Non-fiction crime books

The Arsonist by Chloe Hooper

“This is a tough book to read in parts. I think I cried solidly for thirty pages near the beginning as Hooper describes some of the heartbreaking events with stunning, lyrical clarity. But the care she has taken with this story and its people is also care for the reader, who she accompanies on this journey like a close friend. … Absolutely not to be missed.”

Read our full review here


Debut titles

Eggshell Skull by Bri Lee

“This book sears with white-hot feminist rage: at the reverberation of the abuse in her daily life; at the injustices of the legal system, the obtuseness of its bureaucracies, the institutional violence it perpetrates against victims.”

Read our full review here


Readers’ choice

The Lost Man by Jane Harper

“This is raw, unadulterated rural crime; all that nothing becomes an intense something in Harper’s hands. Events unfold in a simmering slow burn that is impossible to tear your eyes from, and Harper hones her focus on a small fistful of characters that populate an area the size of entire European countries, making everything small and enormous at once.”

Read our full review here

The Davitts are named after Ellen Davitt, author of Australia’s first mystery novel Force and Fraud (1865). Find out more about this year’s winners here.

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The Ruin

The Ruin

Dervla McTiernan

$16.99Buy now

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