Swimming In The Dark

“Beautifully written, this is a complex and gripping novel which I couldn’t put down.” – click here for the full review

Coast F.M

“Her superb 2010 family drama / suspense thriller Hunting Blind cemented Paddy Richardson’s reputation as a Kiwi novelist with a remarkable talent for setting and mood – she has few equals for ominous tension-building – and Swimming in the Dark, also located in her home region of Central Otago, evinces further expansion of her palette.” Read the rest here

Reviews From Amazon

“I’ve discovered a delicious new talent in New Zealand author Paddy Richardson. Her latest novel is dark and gripping and yet ever so beautiful at the same time. . . Richardson delivers beautiful New Zealand imagery and creates characters in miserable situations but who are enormously good at heart and battling tough circumstances in an unforgiving world. Richardson adds depth to already well drawn characters by including sections in the book from each of them. From Gerda we learn of her dark past in the Nazi regime that she believes punished her in the greatest way possible.

The reader is drawn to all of these women. The reader is swimming in the dark along with the characters through the grisly moments of the novel, but Richardson gives us hope and belief in the future and the kinship of women and friends. Instead of the secret that binds them shackling these women, it liberates them and justice is done.”

– Wallis

“This was gripping all the way through and difficult to put down. There was a great atmosphere engendered and an interesting twist engendered when the story reached into East Germany behind the Iron Curtain. A great escape for the reader.”

– Lumine



Reviews From Good Reads

“An atmospheric psychological drama, Swimming in the Dark, the fourth novel by award-winning New Zealand writer Paddy Richardson, explores the themes of family, oppression, fear and the strength it takes to rise above them. . .Beautifully written, this is a complex and gripping novel which I couldn’t put down. I’m loathe to reveal this story’s secrets, and at a loss to articulate its power other than to say I was held captive by the undercurrent of suspense, moved by the character’s struggles, and stunned by the novel’s conclusion. A must read.”

– Shelleyrae at Book’d Out

“A fascinating crime novel circling four women – Serena, Lynnette, Ilse and Gerda. It takes place over several decades, and in both Leipzig, Germany and Alexandra, NZ.

I wasn’t sure what to make of this at first, but the way the novel pulls you in and sweeps you up in the characters, it is impossible not to become invested. The central figures are all strong and unique, and have endured many trials to become as they are.

This novel does not shy away from the moral grey areas it encounters, instead following where they lead. It looks at questions of justice and judgement, of secrecy and silence, of oppression and freedom, and lets the reader feel the uncertainties of the characters themselves as these issues arise.
I really enjoyed this, both as a crime novel, and as a very unique piece of women’s literature.”

– Daysanddreaming