Utterly Compelling: Read an Extract from The Seven by Chris Hammer

Utterly Compelling: Read an Extract from The Seven by Chris Hammer

The irrigation canal stretches into the distance, perfect for waterskiing: two kilometres long, ten metres wide, ruler-straight, almost as large as Yuwonderie’s main canal. There’s a gentle breeze wafting in from the north, enough to ripple the surface. Eggs splashes water onto his face, then eases himself into the canal, feeling its sun-warmed embrace. It’s Sunday, and his supervisor at the Wholesalers has let him off early. The others were already here waiting, preparing,

Eggs keen to go first, his friends happy to let him. And now all is ready for this summer’s challenge: the curve. He has the ski, the towrope handle. He wriggles his feet into the soft rubber toe pieces, leans back, pushes the tip of the ski above the surface, curling himself into a ball, an astronaut on a launch pad.

On the bank, Johnny Titchfield is driving the farm truck, while Pete Allsop is the go-between in the back tray. Eggs gives the thumbs-up, Pete yells, ‘Take the slack!’ and Johnny edges the vehicle forward, along the path above the right-hand bank, the tightening rope emerging from the water.

‘Gun it!’ yells Pete, and Johnny floors it. The truck lurches into motion, and Eggs is all concentration: the wrench to the shoulders, the pressure on his legs, pushing ever so slightly to get up and stay upright in the narrow canal as the truck gathers speed, hanging on, edging the ski to counter the rope’s sideways pull. Avoiding the banks. And then he’s up, in equilibrium, accelerating down the canal, Pete yelling his encouragement, Johnny struggling to keep the speed constant on the runnelled track.

Eggs feels the thrill of it, the exhilaration, water spraying and wind in his face, tearing down the canal, orange trees to his left, grapevines to his right. Now they’re moving fast, the truck reaching cruising speed, and there’s not a lot to it, the narrow canal allowing no room for slalom. He enjoys the moment, taking a hand from the crossbar to wave to Pete, to demonstrate his mastery.

A family of ducks sees him coming and bursts into flight as he slices through them, laughing…

Continue reading the extract here…

Buy a copy of The Seven here.

Reviews

Corruption, Power and Greed: Read Our Review of The Seven by Chris Hammer

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4 October 2023

Corruption, Power and Greed: Read Our Review of The Seven by Chris Hammer

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        Publisher details

        The Seven
        Author
        Chris Hammer
        Publisher
        Allen & Unwin
        Genre
        Fiction
        Released
        03 October, 2023
        ISBN
        9781761067426

        Synopsis

        The latest stunning thriller from the bestselling author of Scrublands and The Tilt.

        Yuwonderie's seven founding families have lorded it over their district for a century, growing ever more rich and powerful.

        But now—in startling circumstances—one of their own is found dead in a ditch and homicide detectives Ivan Lucic and Nell Buchanan are sent to investigate.

        Could the murder be connected to the execution of the victim's friend thirty years ago—another member of The Seven—or even to the long-forgotten story of a servant girl on the brink of the Great War?

        What are the secrets The Seven are so desperate to keep hidden?

        With the killer still on the loose and events spiralling out of control, the closer Ivan and Nell get to discovering the truth, the more dangerous their investigation becomes. Can they crack the case before more people die?

        The Seven is a compelling thriller filled with intrigue, emotional depth and an evocative sense of place—where nothing is ever quite what it seems. Chris Hammer, the acclaimed and bestselling author of the international bestsellers Scrublands, Treasure & Dirt and The Tilt, can take his place among the world's finest crime writers.

        Chris Hammer
        About the author

        Chris Hammer

        Chris Hammer was a journalist for more than thirty years, dividing his career between covering Australian federal politics and international affairs. For many years he was a roving foreign correspondent for SBS TV's flagship current affairs program Dateline. He has reported from more than thirty countries on six continents. In Canberra, roles included chief political correspondent for The Bulletin, current affairs correspondent for SBS TV and a senior political journalist for The Age. His first book, The River, published in 2010 to critical acclaim, was the recipient of the ACT Book of the Year Award and was shortlisted for the Walkley Book Award and the Manning Clark House National Cultural Award. Scrublands, his first novel, was published in 2018 and was shortlisted for Best Debut Fiction at the Indie Book Awards, shortlisted for Best General Fiction at the Australian Book Industry Awards, shortlisted for the UTS Glenda Adams Award for New Writing at the NSW Premier's Literary Awards and won the UK Crime Writers' Association John Creasey Debut Dagger Award. His second novel, Silver, was published in 2019 and was shortlisted for Best General Fiction at the Australian Book Industry Awards, shortlisted for the 2020 ABA Booksellers' Choice Book of the Year Award, and longlisted for the UK Crime Writers' Association Gold Dagger Award. Chris has a bachelor's degree in journalism from Charles Sturt University and a master's degree in international relations from the Australian National University. He lives in Canberra with his wife, Dr Tomoko Akami. The couple have two children.

        Books by Chris Hammer

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