Author Archives: Jassy Mackenzie

On The Run

She couldn’t believe they had caught up with her. Here, in this dusty little town in the middle of nowhere, with veld and farmland stretching to the horizon in every direction, thousands of miles away from where it all began.

Still, she had worried. With the Internet and satellite TV, news travelled as fast around the world as gossip through a village. She was sure that there was a computer or a satellite dish in some of the cottages on what was optimistically called Main Street – the only tarred road in town. All it would take was a few inquisitive taps on a keyboard, or the wrong choice of channel at the wrong time, and they would know. She had hoped that nobody would be curious enough to make the effort. She had hoped that in this remote part of South Africa, people perceived the UK as boring and far away, much too English to worry about.

Which is why she was appalled to see five copies of the Sunday Telegraph, the Union Jack logo proudly displayed, in the newsstand of the little general store.
“You get the Telegraph here?” she asked the assistant, trying to sound casual as she glanced at the headlines, scanning the words for the story she knew would be there.

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Drowning (US) / Breathless (SA)

Drowning US cover

“Erotic. Exotic. Wild. Drowning sizzles in the African heat as one woman is stretched to the breaking point by the strength of her vows and the intensity of her seething primal desires.

Soon after her marriage, New Yorker Erin Mitchell is en route to Kruger when her vehicle is washed off a flooding bridge. She can thank her lucky stars that Nicholas de Lanoy is there to help her. Continue reading

Pale Horses

Pale horses US cover pale horses cover

When base jumper Sonet Meintjies plummets to her death from the top of a Sandton skyscraper, her jumping partner insists that it was no accident. Recovering from the end of her tricky relationship with police superintendent David Patel and trying to deal with the ugliness of her last job, P.I. Jade de Jong is initially reluctant to take on the case. But after initial investigations reveal that the victim worked to help impoverished communities, and that one of these communities has disappeared entirely, their houses razed to the ground, she cannot walk away.
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The Fallen (US) / Worst Case (SA)

The Fallen cover Worst Case cover

“A white-knuckle thriller with an utterly chilling finale and twists you’ll never anticipate. I raced through this book and wanted more!” Tess Gerritsen

P.I. Jade de Jong’s holiday becomes a nightmare when a dive instructor at the scuba resort is found brutally stabbed to death. The only clue is a cryptic postcard in her room. Jade and her estranged lover David Patel put aside their differences and start the hunt, uncovering a massive organised crime operation Continue reading

Praise for My Brother’s Keeper

“This is a thrilling story of intricate connectivity, packed with sophisticated clues and doubtful coincidences that hint at something deeper, a sinister puppet master with a hidden agenda and ingenious subplots, which make it a rare delight to read…. A clever book, excellently written, lean, spare and tight, My Brother’s Keeper is an intriguing and exciting page-turner by a major new talent who could, if she wanted, put Jozi on the literary map.”
Aubrey Paton – Sunday Times

“This is a book you’ll race to finish, and the double denouement is as satisfying as it’s unexpected and shocking. It’s perfect in its reality, yet nowhere trite… I can’t wait for the next instalment.”
James Mitchell – The Star

“A real page-turner… The novel is set in Johannesburg and has several subplots that come together with a terrific twist in the tail and an intentionally troublesome ending. It’s not deep, but it’s intelligent and believable.”
Jane Rosenthal – Mail & Guardian 

“An accomplished, scary foray into the criminal underbelly of Johannesburg, a city whose differing aspects, moods and byways she clearly knows intimately.”
William Saunderson-Meyer – The Weekender 

“Set in Johannesburg, this is a gripping thriller from a local author… Well-written, fast paced and with plenty of twists.”
Anne Duncan – Femina 

“My Brothers’ Keeper has all the ingredients of a good crime thriller – a convoluted plot that unfolds at the right pace; strong protagonists whose life stories slowly start to form a picture as the plot progresses and, lastly, that twist at the end that turns the fictional world upside down.”
Natalie Bosman – The Citizen 

Praise for Random Violence

“A fast-paced, relevant thriller exposing the grim, violent world of Johannesburg. Hijackings, corrupt cops, vigilantes and shady construction deals. It’s all here. She details the pace, mood and tensions of the city with a keen eye. It was surprisingly engaging to read a novel set in a familiar setting…. It’s encouraging to see new authors emerge from the local scene with such strong, compelling voices. We look forward to her next book.”

Anthony Ehlers – The Write Co. Read full review »

“Local writer Jassy Mackenzie delivers a thriller that will, hopefully, prove the first of many… It’s the individual characters, whether snooty suburbanites or fearful pensioners, who make this so realistic. The scene-setting will resonate with Gauteng readers, as too will the sense of doom at the hands of criminals unchecked by any effective policing.”

James Mitchell – The Star Read full review »

“Jassy Mackenzie’s debut novel, Random Violence, presents a series of calculated crimes inspired by good ol’ greed and a liberal dash of psychosis… The book is your typical fast-paced cops and robbers crime novel with a variety of interesting twists, but it has a sexy, take-no-nonsense female sleuth at the helm of the story to spice it up,”

Carly Ritz – The Times 

In Mariana Malan’s review in the Afrikaans newspaper, Die Burger, she explains that Random Violence gives readers a fascinating look at the shady side of Johannesburg, and that the book grips from the very first chapter, where the description of the hijacking will leave readers in a nervous sweat.

Mariana Malan – Die Burger Read full review »

The plot has more than its fair share of nice twists, and Mackenzie does a superb job of making the reader care for her gutsy lead while offering a glimpse at life in South Africa after apartheid. Readers will wish Jade a long fictional career. (Apr.)

Publisher’s Weekly Read full review »

Random Violence

Random Violence US cover Random violence cover

“In a place where life is cheap, it’s easy for a killer to profit.”

A dark winter’s evening. A lonely smallholding outside Johannesburg. A brutal shooting. The murder of solitary divorcee Annette Botha appears to be a botched hijacking, just another senseless crime in the surge of violence sweeping South Africa.

With his career at stake, newly promoted police superintendent David Patel is desperate to get results on this case. Continue reading

My Brother’s Keeper

My brother’s keeper cover

“Truly compelling… A smart, page-turning thriller populated with living, breathing characters, one of the most memorable being Jo’burg itself.”Jeffery Deaver

Arriving at a highway accident scene on a stormy night, Jo’burg paramedic Nick Kenyon finds only one victim – a critically injured young woman in the car’s passenger seat. In the ambulance, Nick agrees to take her phone and make an urgent call for her. He doesn’t know that the missing driver is part of a ruthless gang of robbers planning their biggest-ever heist – and Nick’s actions have just made him a target.

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