This dark and gripping debut should put Papathanasiou up there with the stars of outback noir like Jane Harper and Chris Hammer. A brilliant new name in crime fiction.
I was unable to put this book down - it's dark, gritty and utterly compelling. In George Manolis, you have a detective in the tradition of Chandler's Marlowe, yet entirely right for the times in which we live now - he's superbly written.
The Stoning repels and compels at the same time, laying bare the festering secrets of a small town one by one. A thoughtful and confident debut.
A struggling cop, long-buried secrets, a town gone awry - this is outback noir with the noir dialled right up. I loved it.
The Stoning is a police-procedural with a difference; a gritty, menacing novel with a terrific sense of place. A highly relevant examination of prejudice and racism in an outback town. Detective Sergeant George Manolis is a great new addition to the Australian crime scene.
It's hard to believe this is Peter Papathanasiou's first novel . . . Outback noir has a new star
Political crime fiction of a high order
In a town no one visits and everyone wants to leave, and where people eat strips of crocodile meat and the heat is pitiless, Papathanasiou conveys how the temperature infuses every interaction. Deliciously dark outback noir.
This dark, brooding story is the first in a planned series of 'outback noir', and it bodes well
Vivid and atmospheric . . . The writing is evocative, the characters are superbly drawn and the clever plot is layered and engaging . . . If you like your crime fiction dark, claustrophobic and thought-provoking with a strong sense of place then this book might be for you.
Deeply disturbing outback noir that confronts our treatment of asylum seekers, our First Nations and each other. It's a superb start to a new series, heralding Peter Papathanasiou as a brilliant new name in Australian crime
We talk about these Australian books as having this atmosphere, they're about climate change and the drought . . . This book, this pretty dark book, is like outback noir plus. It's atmospheric, relevant and totally brutal. Absolutely in the spirit of Jane Harper and Chris Hammer and Garry Disher.
As the praise this debut is garnering from critics and crime fiction fans demonstrates, it stands out in that highly competitive genre, in part for a willingness to shine an unforgiving light on real world injustice and inequality
Drier than a Martian canal, hotter than a smelting forge: the investigation into a Biblical execution in a poverty-ravaged outback town finds city-based cop George Manolis battling drunken incompetence, racial hatred, and decades of state-sponsored dysfunction. Papathanasiou writes unsparingly, confidently, and compellingly. His book is desperately bleak but possessed by a savage beauty.
Brilliant and unsettling from start to finish
The uglier sides of Australian life are explored in a hard-hitting outback noir debut... Papathanasiou doesn't pull any punches as he delivers outback noir with a clear-eyed look at hypocrisies old and new and some of the ugly sides of modern life in the 'lucky country'.