Prize-winning Australian writers Malcolm Knox and Michael Robotham join Ashley Hay to discuss the riveting new novels that extend their reputations as masters of their crafts. A prolific journalist and author, Malcolm chats about the hilarious and mesmerising Bluebird, which examines nostalgia, gentrification and the Australian dream through the lens of decades of secrets buried in a beachside suburb. One of the country’s finest and bestselling crime writers, Michael talks about the pulse-quickening When She Was Good, which sees the return of forensic psychologist Cyrus Haven, embroiled in an explosive murder case with disturbing origins.

Please note, this discussion includes references to topics such as sexual abuse and torture. 

This podcast was recorded live at the 2021 Sydney Writers’ Festival and is available on all major podcast platforms.

Malcolm Knox (Australian)

Malcolm Knox

Malcolm Knox is an acclaimed writer, novelist and journalist who has won numerous awards, including the Ned Kelly Award, Colin Roderick Award, Ashurst Business Literature Prize, Human Rights Commission Award, Walkley Award for Investigative Journalism, Walkley Award for Magazine Writing, and the Walkley Award for Sports Reporting, as well as being shortlisted for the Prime Minister’s Literary Award, NSW Premier’s Award and the Queensland Premier’s Award. Malcolm has written many works of non-fiction and sports books. Malcolm’s novels are Summerland, A Private Life, Jamaica, The Life, The Wonder Lover and Bluebird.

Michael Robotham (Australian)

Michael Robotham

Before becoming a novelist, Michael Robotham was an investigative journalist working across America, Australia and Britain. As a journalist and writer, he investigated notorious cases such as the serial killer couple Fred and Rosemary West. He has worked with clinical and forensic psychologists as they helped police investigate complex, psychologically driven crimes. Michael’s 2004 debut thriller, The Suspect, sold more than 1 million copies around the world. It is the first of nine novels featuring beloved Joe OLoughlin. Good Girl, Bad Girl is the first book in an exciting new series featuring forensic psychologist Cyrus Haven and was shortlisted for the 2020 Edgar Award for Best Novel. Michael is the only Australian to win the UKs prestigious Gold Dagger Award twice – for Good Girl, Bad Girl and Life or Death. In 2020, The Secrets She Keeps was adapted for television. Michael’s most recent novel is When She Was Good.

Ashley Hay (Australian)

Ashley Hay

Ashley Hay is a novelist and essayist whose awards include the Foundation of Australian Literary Studies’ Colin Roderick Award, the NSW Premier’s Literary Awards Peoples’ Choice, and the Bragg/UNSW Press Prize for Science Writing. Her writing has been shortlisted for awards including the Commonwealth Writers' Prize and Queensland Literary Awards, and longlisted for prizes including the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award and the Miles Franklin. Her novels include The Body in the Clouds and A Hundred Small Lessons. She is the editor of Griffith Review.