I can now reveal the gorgeous cover for my new novel The Doctor's Wife, designed by the very talented  Keely O'Shannessy  

Release date October 11 2022.

More details coming soon

Preorder from your local bookseller, or directly from  Bateman Books  



I am very much looking forward to sharing my journey as a writer on August 16th 2022, 10.30am at Papatoetoe Library as part of We Read Auckland. I'd love to see you there.

For more information  A Morning with Fiona Sussman  



Thrilled to have a short story included in DARK DEEDS DOWN UNDER – an anthology of crime/thriller stories by a uniquely Antipodean clutch of authors. Edited by Craig Sisterson and published by Clan Destine Press Australia

Release date: June 26th 2022

Find it at your local bookseller or order your copy directly from  Clan Destine Press.  



I'm very much looking forward to participating in World Book Day 2022 celebrations, sharing my writing journey and some writer's insights.


Free entrance. Booking essential.




It was a pleasure to be asked to contribute to an exciting new website,, aimed at optimising topic-specific online book discovery. Here is my list of the 5 best books about the human capacity to rise above prejudice. This was a theme explored in my first novel – Another Woman's Daughter (US edition)/ Shifting Colours (UK edition).

 My list of the 5 best books about the human capacity to rise above prejudice


Thrilled to announce that I’ve just signed with the wonderful Bateman Books for the publication of my fourth novel.

The Doctor’s Wife is due out October 2022.



I am very much looking forward to chatting with Danielle Warren-Smith by Zoom on Thursday 11th November, about my journey across the globe and across careers. It would be lovely if you could join us.

Copy and paste this link into your browser to connect to the Zoom meeting on THURS 11th NOV.

TIMES: SYDNEY (7-8pm)  NEW ZEALAND (9-10pm) SOUTH AFRICA (10-11am) UK (8-9AM)


November 11th 2021


I’m very much looking forward to talking about my writing journey, and specifically about “Addressed to Greta”, with Danielle Warren-Smith, via Zoom.

Part of South African Story Hour.

11th Nov, 7-8 pm Australian Time

Watch this space for more details.




I'm very much looking forward to participating in WE READ AUCKLAND - a series of free winter events organised by Auckland Libraries. To register for my creative writing workshop on character click here


I am beyond thrilled to learn that 'Addressed to Greta' has won the NZ Booklovers Best Adult Fiction Award 2021! A huge shoutout to my wonderful publishers, Bateman Books.

  2021 Best Adult Fiction Award 

The Genesis of "Addressed to Greta" and More . . .


I talk to NZ Booklovers about the genesis of "Addressed to Greta" and more here



Would love to see you there!

Thursday 18th March 2021

1 pm - 3pm (Arrival from 12.30pm)





Canvas Magazine, The NZ WEEKEND HERALD 6/03/2021


Addressed to Greta shortlisted for NZ Booklover's Best Adult Fiction Award 2021

Thrilled to learn that ADDRESSED TO GRETA has been shortlisted for the NZ Best Adult Fiction Award 2021.

Winners announced March 18th.

What the judges said: "‘You must meet Greta, one of the most well-realised and endearing figures in recent New Zealand fiction. Sussman, a Ngaio Marsh Award winner for Best Novel, takes an oft-traversed path – protagonist receives an unexpected inheritance with strings attached – and then rejects predictability, letting Greta loose on a global adventure that turns her quiet life on its head. If a woman in her later 30s can be the subject of a bildungsroman, that’s Addressed to Greta – but categorisation aside, this novel is something special, and a passage set in Rwanda is a superb example of historically informed storytelling."

NZ Booklover  2021 Best Adult Fiction Award


Addressed to Greta Launched into the World

It was a gorgeous sunny day in Cornwall Park when we sent 'Addressed to Greta' out into the world. What a lot of love to see Greta on her way!

Interview With the Wonderful Andrew Whiteside

It was a real privilege to talk to Andrew Whiteside about my new novel.

Listen here to the interview

Addressed to Greta

Thrilled to have these lovely words to set Greta off on her journey into the world!


Addressed to Greta

Look what I’ve just got my hands on. . . the beautiful cover of my upcoming novel! Can’t wait to share more about 'Addressed to Greta' with you in the leadup to its release in November.


Addressed to Greta


I am thrilled to announce that Bateman Books  will be launching their fiction list with my new novel 'Addressed to Greta' in the first week of November 2020.

Watch this space for updates.

Commonwealth Short Story Prize 2020


Thrilled to have my story 'A Breath, A Bunk, A Land, A Sky' shortlisted for the Commonwealth Short Story Prize 2020. It was one of 20 stories selected from around the globe from over 5 000 entries. I'm delighted to be alongside NZ author Catherine Chidgey.


 Read more:



Taupō Winter Festival

What a fun weekend at the Taupō Winter Festival, participating in the quirkily-themed 'Death by Doughnuts' literary event, alongside fabulous fellow writer Paddy Richardson. Such a great team behind the event and such a warm, receptive audience. Thank you Taupō! And yes, those are delicious doughnuts on the wall behind us.

For more information about the annual festival

Taupo Winter Festival

I am very much looking forward to sharing the stage with fellow author Paddy Richardson at the first ever literary event to be held at the Taupo Winter Festival. Paddy and I will be talking about our respective books and crime writing in general. What with the venue being Taupo Funeral Services, with mulled wine and doughnuts on offer, this promises to be a fun-filled, atmospheric evening! So book your tickets and come along. It's all for a great cause.

For more information

First place in NZ's Premier Short Story Award

I am thrilled that my short story 'Mad Men' has won the Sunday Star Times NZ Short Story Award for 2018. Huge congratulations to authors Eileen Merriman and Kathryn Van Beek for being placed runners-up. Follow the link to read a bit about the impetus for the story, and to read 'Mad Men'.

Read more

'Mad Men'



Thrilled to have been invited to talk to the School Librarians (SLANZA - in Auckland last night at their end of year function. Thank you for being such a delightful and generous audience. I was reminded what a special group of book people librarians are!

The Kiwis Are Coming

I am thrilled to have been invited to talk at 'Bloody Scotland' in September. I'll be sharing the stage with some awesome authors. Watch this space!

Read more


Even though I have now been writing for more than fourteen years, I still pinch myself whenever I learn that the characters I have spent many hours creating in my study, have actually walked out into the world and are meeting people . . .

Recently, I was both delighted and honoured to learn that an English class at Epsom Girls' Grammar are studying 'The Last Time We Spoke' as part of their curriculum. Yesterday I had the pleasure and privilege of visiting EGGS to discuss writing and the novel in more detail with the students.


TURNING THE PAGE, SAT 26th MAY 1-5pm Auckland, Writing workshops for all levels

Join us for an inspiring afternoon of writing workshops. I am very much looking forward to discussing how to write a compelling 'crime' novel. 3.45pm- 4.45pm.





THE LAST TIME WE SPOKE wins Ngaio Marsh Award for Best Crime Novel 2017.

"This is brave and sophisticated storytelling." - judges

Read more:

THE LAST TIME WE SPOKE wins Ngaio Marsh Award for Best Crime Novel 2017.


9mm CRIME WATCH INTERVIEW SERIES Fiona with Craig Sisterson





Murder in the Library

Thrilled to be awarded The Ngaio Marsh Award for Best Crime Novel 2017 at a very special event in Christchurch hosted by WORD Christchurch and Scorpio Books. I'm still walking on air, and feeling very honoured to receive such recognition for 'The Last Time We Spoke.' Congratulations to Michael Bennett, whose book 'In Dark Places' won the Non-Fiction Award, and Finn Bell, whose book 'Dead Lemons' won Best First Novel.

Read More


Murder in the Library

Wonderful morning exploring how to create authentic characters in fiction with this group of inspired young writers.


An interview with Nix Whittaker on her website which showcases New Zealand writing.

NZ Authors

Very excited to learn that The Last Time We Spoke is a finalist for the Ngaio Marsh Award for Best Crime Novel NZ 2017. The winner is to be announced 28th October 2017

The Spinoff
Kiwicrime Blogspot


Murder in the Library

Top of the South booklovers, keep the evening of Thursday 1 June free, as we'll be holding a Murder in the Library event at Nelson Library with local authors David Briggs and Alan Carter, as well as visiting author Fiona Sussman. More details to follow...



Book Lover's Afternoon TeaDelighted to be sharing the stage at the Auckland Writer's Festival with Jonathan Cullinane, Kelly Ana More and David Schmidt. Join us for a session of readings from our most recent works as we explore the many dimensions of crime.

SATURDAY MAY 20 – 4.30-5.20pm


I'll be discussing my novel, 'The Last Time We Spoke', at the beautiful Takapuna Library on WED 8th MARCH at 6pm. If you're free, pop along for a glass of wine and some book talk. Be great to see you there!.

NZ Heritage Books and Writing Award

Thrilled to learn that 'The Last Time We Spoke' has been shortlisted for the NZ Heritage Books and Writing award.

The Shortlist

Hospice TeaBook Lover's Afternoon Tea

Mark SUNDAY NOVEMBER 13th in your diaries!!!!

BOOKS, CAKE, A GREAT CAUSE ... Come and indulge in a sumptuous high tea, listen to NZ authors share their stories, and help Hospice keep doing the wonderful work it does.

The annual MKWC residential workshop will take place on Labour weekend this year. The programme, centred around the theme Writing NZ, People, Politics, Place, promises a feast of workshops, discussions and debates sure to help Kiwi writers hone their craft. If you are free 22nd/23rd October, secure your place!

An interview with the lovely Lynn Freeman about 'The Last Time We Spoke'.

Listen to the interview here.

Indie Top 20

"The Last Time We Spoke" on the Indie NZ Bestseller List

Indie Top 20 : Week ending 4 June 2016
Indie Top 20 : Week ending 18 June 2016

Advanced Fiction Course – journey to publication

The Creative Hub provides a variety of writing courses, taught by some of New Zealand’s leading writers.

This is a one-off new course offered to graduates of our Thirty Week Fiction courses, those with a Masters of Creative Writing, or those who have published a book of fiction.

It will run from 2nd August to 26th October 2016. It will feature workshops on manuscript development by some of NZ’s leading fiction editors, plus sessions by successfully published writers who are graduates of our Thirty Week Fiction Courses and its predecessor. In addition, student work will be discussed on a weekly rotational basis, using feedback from the group in sessions chaired by Hub director John Cranna. We will also be covering scholarships, mentoring and bursaries available to start out writers.

Start Date: Tuesday August 2nd 2016, 6-9pm
Course Length: 12 weeks, weekly on Tuesday nights


Geoff Walker – Former publishing director, Penguin Books "Working with fiction writers to bring their work to print" (to workshops).

Harriet Allan –  Current Fiction publisher, Penguin Random House "Publishing fiction in New Zealand in 2016, and Penguin / Random House’s role in the books scene."

Fiona Sussman – novelist: "Moving from a creative writing course to international publication."

Ann Glamuzina – novelist: "“Writing a best-seller, and the role of a publishing collective of like-minded people in helping bring that about."

Rosetta Allan – novelist: "My journey as a writer to successful publication by Penguin Books."

Mark Broatch – Books and Arts Editor, NZ Listener: "The way the media works, and how to get yourself noticed by books editors and other journalists."

Jackie Dennis – CEO, New Zealand Society of Authors: "How the NZ Society of Authors helps develop and support emerging writing talent."


Irish Times

Article in the Irish Times: The Last Time We Spoke.

Takahe Magazine Feature

Book of the Day Washington DC Libraries

"Another Woman's Daughter by @FionaSussman is today's beautiful, moving #BookoftheDay". DC Public Library@dcpl

When to Call Yourself a Writer

We Heart Writing.

How Short Story Writing Can Help With Writing Novels

Writers & Artists.

The first USA review is in for 'Another Woman's Daughter'.

Very excited to learn that Shifting Colours is listed in Sainsbury's Best Debut Novels Collection for 2014!

Sainsbury's Best Debut Novels 2014

I'm delighted to be featuring in an event entitled History's Shadow, reading alongside authors Laurie Halse Anderson (US), Zia Haider Rahman (Bangladesh/UK) and Airini Beautrais (NZ).

Friday 15th May 4pm - 4.50 pm, Limelight Room, Aotea Centre.

Lisa Hill of ANZ LitLovers reviews Shifting Colours and profiles my writing career:

Meet a Kiwi author

Interview with Carole Beu on the Book Show – FACE TV

You can watch by following the link below (17.47 minutes in):
Interview with Carole Beu.

Join us for what promises to be a fun morning in support of a great cause - the Animal Sanctuary.

An interview with the lovely >Jeanette Thomas> of Good Morning TV> about 'Shifting Colours'.

Jeanette Thomas Interview

Fiona talks to Lynn Freeman on Radio NZ about 'Shifting Colours' and lots more Listen here.

Find out a bit more about Fiona and her writing on Novel Kicks.

Thrilled to see that the cover of 'Shifting Colours' got the thumbs up on Jennifer Joyce's Blog.

Thanks again to Keely O'Shannessy for her stunning artwork and Christina Griffiths for the beautiful completed cover design.

Cover Stars: Shifting Colours by Fiona Sussman

Every month I choose my favourite cover from my TBR pile. Feel free to comment or add your own suggestions for 'Cover Stars'.

'This is the sweet memory of Mme, my dear mother. The first sweet memory ... Sometimes her laughter bursts into my head or I hear her call me – my name full and round in her mouth. Frustratingly though, as with all the memories I have of Mme, her face always blurs under the pressure of my focus.'

Celia Mphephu works as a maid for Mr and Mrs Steiner in a leafy, white man's suburb of 1960s Johannesburg. When racial tensions in the country reach fever pitch and the Steiners' plan to relocate to England, they offer to adopt Celia's young daughter Miriam and raise her as their own.

But Miriam finds England to be very different to the place the Steiners have told her about. And so begins her long journey through the years, back to South Africa, to find her mother and herself.

Set against the violent backdrop of apartheid South Africa and then the calm of late twentieth-century Britain, Shifting Colours traces the lives of a mother and daughter separated by land, sea and heart-rending circumstance.

Shifting Colours has quite a stripped back cover, but it's so striking. With the vibrant purple of the tree's leaves, my eye is instantly drawn to the book, inviting me to pick it up and see what it's all about. And then there is the flash of red of the girl's dress, which I find intriguing. Who is this girl and what is her story? The cover is simple, but it has certainly done its job of grabbing my attention!


Delighted to learn that 'Shifting Colours' has been picked as an Amazon UK top read and has been shortlisted for the Amazon Rising Stars 2014. It will be showcased on their website 13-20th July and an overall winner will be chosen at the end of the year. Reviews can be posted on Amazon UK or tweeted using #AmazonRisingStars.


Hay Festival 2014Attending the Hay Literary Festival had been on my bucket list for a very long time. This year I was fortunate enough to be realise that dream! I was in the quaint market town of Hay-on-Wye in the Welsh Borders for seven whole days, soaking up the words of writers, scientists, actors, foodies, comedians and philosophers.

If you'd like to read more about my experience at this fabulous festival, as well as my trip to the Loire Valley in France, go to my writer's Facebook page to see the blog I kept.

Winner of the 2014 Kobo/NZAuthor Publishing Prize

Kobo Writing Life The New Zealand Society of Authors


The New Zealand Society of Authors (PEN NZ Inc) announces the winners of its inaugural E-Publishing prize offered with international publishing giant Kobo Writing Life.

Two new authors have won the publishing chance of a lifetime, with the inaugural 2014 Kobo/NZ Authors E-Publishing Prize which will see their books professionally published by the Kobo Writing Life platform.

Fiona Sussman is fiction winner with Sentenced, a gritty novel about disaffected youth in the New Zealand urban underbelly.   Judges described Sentenced as a gripping, thought provoking story about a tough subject. 

Robin Sisley wins the non-fiction category with Eat the Wind about rescuing stallions from slaughter before the 1997 muster of the Kaimanawa wild horses. Judges commented that the manuscript stood out with lively writing which flowed naturally and a subject both exciting and surprising.

The results of on-line reader voting on writing samples of the 10 finalists coincided with the decision of judges, which means both Sussman and Sisley win a Kobo reader as well as fully professional editing and digital publication.

“The purpose of the award was to recognise excellence in creative writing as well as to create a launching pad for writers’ careers, and clearly these two manuscripts stood out,” says NZ Society of Authors President Kyle Mewburn. “We look forward to following their careers on the international platform which this prize can provide. It is a significant win and we congratulate these new writers.”

Kobo Writing Life operations manager Jodi White convened the judging panel.  “Kobo is proud and very delighted to be a part of this Publishing Prize, and are excited to offer these authors the opportunity to publish a professional book, at such a value that the author probably could not afford to do on their own.  Kobo’s panel of judges really enjoyed this and having the opportunity to be part of kick-starting an author’s career is truly something we value and believe in.

“We cannot wait to start working with the authors.”

The New Zealand Society of Authors,, December 2013


Best Fiction | Commended
 | Fiona Sussman: Shifting Colours

"Shifting Colours is a powerful story of family ties, secrets and love. This intriguing novel is foremost about the relationship between Celia and her daughter Miriam and all the struggles and turmoil that come between them. Separated by land and sea, Celia and Miriam’s story begins in South Africa’s violent landscape and then continues in calm, quiet England. As you turn the pages, you are magnetised by the surprises, great details and the captivating writing that takes you into the heart and mind of the characters."
IP eNews 45, Vol 12, No 1.

First Place Graeme Lay Short Story Competition 2012

"This story manages in less than 1500 words to present the complexities of the life and death of its deceased central character. Skillfully structured, many-layered, and with a deeply satisfying ending, The Gift is a worthy winner of this year’s competition. Fiona read her story to a packed auditorium and the enthusiastic applause that followed was vindication the delighted audience wholeheartedly agreed with Graeme Lay’s selection."

Beatties Book Blog - unofficial homepage of the New Zealand book community, Monday, December 10, 2012