Dunedin City Of Magic

By Kura Carpenter | Posted: Monday September 24, 2018

Anyone living in Dunedin knows the magic of our city. Kura Carpenter thought shed share that with the world. Her debut novel The Kingfishers Debt (IFWG Australia) is set in contemporary Dunedin with one twist: What if magic was real?

A first person POV mystery, The Kingfisher’s Debt follows Tamsin Fairchild, a woman with criminal and supernatural connections, as she’s drawn into a police investigation to find a missing baby, and gradually the leads start to uncover secrets within her own family history in particular the disappearance surrounding her elder brother.

“I’ve read fantasy from a very young age, but as I grew older I became dissatisfied with the same old plot lines, chosen-ones, swords, more swords *sigh* and I switched to reading crime/mystery. But again I became dissatisfied with the genre, cop interviews suspect, suspect lies, cop interviews suspects again. *sigh*.

About then I discovered Charlaine Harris’ Harper Connelly series, about a woman who after being struck by lightening can sense in the earth where bones of murder victims are buried, and I knew I’d found my niche: urban fantasy, which blends fantasy and crime stories together.” - Kura

Meet Tamsin Fairchild, hailing from a family that dance on the far side of the law, she's got a few secrets - and special abilities - of her own. But when the cops come knocking, it's not to arrest her (yet!) but to employ her.
The supernatural aspect is unique and well developed, filled with interesting lore of witches, elementals - and the not-so-fair fair folk. The pacing is excellent, with a pleasing array of twists and turns, a hearty dash of humour

Angela Oliver Christchurch author and Goodreads reviewer

“My opinion is that magic wouldn’t make the world easier, magic would add complications to human problems, and it would certainly create great motivation for theft...” - Kura

“Dunedin is a fabulous place, and because it’s relatively small it’s perfectly self-contained so in creating a mystery setting, it was a no-brainer to use our city as the novel’s setting.

I think it’s important to give back to your community, and they say write what you know, so I did, places I volunteer Like the Dunedin Railway Station, or I’ve worked: Cadbury’s, and the Dunedin Public Library, iconic Dunedin beaches like St Clair, and big old Victorian mansions like many students will have flatted in on Pitt Street/London Street.” - Kura

A soundly-written urban crime fantasy with a cast of complex characters, some of whom aren’t too savoury. [A] twist on the traditional crime narrative, and the witches as gang members metaphor is inspired.

Set in Dunedin’s gothic underbelly, the New Zealand flavour of this work is less pronounced than I’d expected, although the Kiwi vernacular is certainly there, as are the multi-cultural themes.

- Lee Murray, editor and award winning author of Into the Mist

While our modern crime writing scene has been firmly established thanks to Vanda Symon and Jane Woodham, Paddy Richardson, and others, Dunedin’s heritage of crime author’s goes back further than most people realise – the man who inspired Arthur Conan Doyle to write Sherlock Holmes was a Dunedin writer – Fergus Hume.

However we’ve also a great selection of Fantasy authors tucked away, diligently typing at keyboards, who are less well-known collectively due to the broad range of sub-genres within Fantasy and because of that, and with the help of the Dunedin Public Library, Kura has been helping arrange a talk by Dunedin Fantasy authors “Genre-8:Flights Of Fantasy

Genre-8: Flights of Fantasy is a chance to hear eight local speculative fiction writers read from and discuss their works, and ask questions. There will even be spot prizes of free books!

Featured Dunedin Fantasy writers are:

Andy Evans Horror Author, reading from: “The Wooden Hills: A Collection of Dark Tales”

Carolyn McCurdie Science Fiction Author, reading from YA novel “The Unquiet”

Daniel Stride Fantasy Author, reading from “Wise Phuul” a steampunk-flavoured dark fantasy about a Necromancer who discovers that one can save oneself, even if you can’t save the world.

Deb E Howell Fantasy Romance author, reading from “Warrior's Touch” a mesmerising mix of fantasy, steampunk and Wild West adventure, served with a healthy dose of romance.

Jayne Castel Epic Fantasy Romance author, reading from “The Lost Swallow” a princess in peril, a woman sworn to protect her—and the assassin sent to kill them both.

Kura Carpenter Urban Fantasy author, reading from “The Kingfisher’s Debt” described as “Wellington Paranormal” meets “Outrageous Fortune” in a novel set in Dunedin.

RL Stedman YA High Fantasy author, reading from “The SoulNecklace Stories - The Collection” where bravery is not always measured by strength, and magic is real, if only one has the courage to dream.

Sean P Martin Supernatural Fantasy author, reading from “Fallen Angel: Penance” where a fallen Angel works in disguise to find the guilty and defend the innocent.


Location: Moray Place, Dunedin Public Library, 4th floor, Dunningham Suite
Date: 11 October 2018
Time: 5.30pm – 7pm
Cost: This is a free event, but bookings advised.
Email address or phone number for booking here


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