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“Michelle Pretorius is a funny, surprising and fearless writer. The Monster’s Daughter is at once a historical thriller that reckons seriously with South African politics, an imaginative piece of speculative fiction, and a stereotype-busting roller-coaster ride of a novel. I loved it.” —Audrey Niffenegger, author of The Time Traveler’s Wife
Library Journal “Pretorius has written an impressive and well-executed debut novel, toeing the line between mystery, suspense, and sf. Readers who enjoy such international crime fiction authors as Stieg Larsson or Louise Penny will find this title a chilling read.” Sunday Times - South Africa “A work of  powerful imagination and profound insight” Book Noir “...a fantastic read and it had me on the edge of my seat a few times. Throughout the book I got angry, I got excited and I got nervous and worried everything that a great book should be, you end up living inside the book right until the very end.”

 SJ2B House of Books 

"A hugely ambitious multi genre, part speculative, part historical political fiction, all encompassed into a murder mystery thriller, this debut is a credit to the author and one I highly recommend." Kritters Ramblings “After reading, I discovered this was a debut and it took my breath away!  I loved that this author came out of the gate with a great piece of work and art and it usually takes a few books for me to become a fan of an author - not this time, I am a fan!” Mystery People UK “A compellingly-written cross between a detective novel, science fantasy, and a history of the last century in South Africa. Recommended.” No More Grumpy Bookseller “So there were a lot of expectations on my part in diving into this debut. And, readers, I was not let down in the least!” Kahakai Kitchen "A gritty and fascinating blend of mystery/thriller, historical, and speculative fiction... I had a hard time putting the book down during the last half--anxious to find out how everything would come together." Traveling Birdie “Racism is a delicate subject. More so in our modern times with layers of implications and political correctness being continually added to it. Michelle Pretorius, however, tackles the subject head on. Fearlessly.” Booksie’s Blog “Michelle Pretorius's debut novel is making waves and it should.”
“Somewhere on the South African veld, 1901: At the height of the Boer War, a doctor at a British concentration camp conducts a series of grim experiments on Boer prisoners. His work ends in chaos, but two children survive: a boy named Benjamin, and a girl named Tessa … One hundred years later, a disgraced young police constable is reassigned to the sleepy South African town of Unie, where she makes a terrifying discovery: the body of a woman, burned beyond recognition. The crime soon leads her into her country's violent past—a past that includes her father, a high-ranking police official under the apartheid regime, and the children left behind in that long ago concentration camp. Michelle Pretorius’s epic debut weaves present and past together into a hugely suspenseful, masterfully plotted thriller that calls to mind Lauren Beukes’s The Shining Girls and Tana French’s The Secret Place. With an explosive conclusion, it marks the emergence of a thrilling new writer.”

An Indies Introduce Debut

Voices pick!
The Rumpus “The Monster’s Daughter blends a rousing plot with deep, multifaceted characters, and it constantly pushes for deeper meaning beyond the surface. Pretorius aims high, and the results will likely have you thinking about the lingering traumas of the past, the toxic effects of marginalization, and the cost of moral and immoral actions long after you set down the book.” Crime Review “... this wonderful book, at the same time a breakneck thriller and a clever literary exploration of the turbulent history of South Africa, with characters that are complex, engaging and utterly authentic and its totally unpredictable plot will astonish you – and bring you to close to tears.” Fully Booked “It is barely credible that this is a debut novel. The writing is spectacularly good; compassionate, evocative of time and place and, above all, totally credible.” The Book Whisperer “At one point I gasped out loud with a twist I did not see coming.  Pretorius has a knack for pacing and knows just how to drop the right clues when, an amazing feat for a debut novelist.  It was incredibly researched.” Crime Segments “I've been a bit disappointed with the so- called summer blockbusters that have come out this year from the big publishing houses.  I've been waiting for someone to get beyond same-old, same- old, and well, here it is. I can honestly say that The Monster's Daughter is an original.  It begins in a normal enough way for a crime novel, with the discovery of a dead body, but trust me, there is nothing at all normal about this book. And that's a good thing.” Bewitched Bookworms “Michelle Pretorius does an excellent job portraying the hopelessness, the anger, and the tension that Apartheid has had on South African citizens for decades... I truly couldn’t put this book down once the story really got going” Helen’s Book Blog “I am sucker for a good mystery. This novel definitely has that. There are so many different mysterious storylines that converge near the end. Well done!” Nose in a Book “I loved this debut novel and look forward to what Michelle Pretorius does next.”


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