Wednesday 16 October 2013

Yvonne Eve Walus - guest blog

Tomorrow, I am planning a post about a couple of members of the crime fiction community who have died recently, but today there's something happier. I've never met Yvonne Eve Walus, which isn't too surprising, since she lives in New Zealand (a country that's quite high on my must-visit list, I might add), but she has contributed more than once to CWA anthologies that I've edited, and I've enjoyed her rather quirky and original approach to the short story form. As a result, I was more than happy to oblige when she offered to write a guest blog post in connection with her brand new novel. Here it is:

'It’s the eve of the release date for Operation Genocide and the first hate review is already in. As its author, I can’t help but feel a twinge of pride: the book is being slammed for being too liberal, too anti-apartheid, too anti-white. That’s a perfect breeding ground for controversy, if you take into account my very pale skin and my very pro-apartheid surname, and controversy is good. Controversy makes readers think. Controversial books are usually the ones that make a difference.

So, what is Operation Genocide about? It’s about loving your country so much, you’re willing to sacrifice your life, your sons, your principles and your basic humanity. It’s about making difficult choices in impossible situations. It’s about circumstances making either monsters or heroes out of ordinary people.

Too vague? Picture this: South Africa 1982. The country is run by a white government voted in by the white population. Other races are second-class citizens. White women do have the right to vote, but they do not enjoy the same privileges as their male counterparts: they need their husband or father’s permission to open a bank account or buy a house. If they earn a wage, they are taxed in a higher tax bracket than their husbands. Just like there are white-only bars, there are men-only bars where women aren’t allowed to enter.

Imagine being a wife in that setting. Imagine staying at home every day, chilling your husband’s beer mug, looking after the children and keeping yourself pretty for him. Imagine your shock when your husband’s murdered and you discover he was an evil scientist plotting to solve the country’s racial problems with one dose of a deadly virus. Imagine your shock when an anonymous note demands you burn the secret files you don’t have. Oh, and meanwhile, you don’t have access to the family bank account because you’re a woman.

Sound like your type of book? Then try the excerpt on my website'.


Yvonne Walus said...

Woo-hoo! Now I have a few more positive reviews. I love a healthy debate.

Unknown said...

Hey Yvonne i'm actually in the middle of reading Operation Genocide right now. and really enjoying it. It really is great insight into life, but more importantly it's keeping me glued to reading. If only i could figure out 'who did it'!
This is a thriller that keeps you guessing.

Jane Beckenham

Samantha Bishop said...

Hi Yvonne, I've found Operation Genocide to be a thought provoking thriller. Fun to read. I can't wait for your next book.

Yvonne Walus said...

Thank you, Jane and Nicole.