Like every other girl in her class, twelve-year-old Justine is drawn to her glamorous, charismatic new teacher, and longs to be her pet. However, when a thief begins to target the school, Justine’s sense that something isn't quite right grows ever stronger. With each twist of the plot, this gripping story of deception and the corrosive power of guilt takes a yet darker turn. Young as she is, Justine must decide where her loyalties lie.
Set in New Zealand in 1984 and 2014, and probing themes of racism and misogyny, Pet is an elegant and chilling psychological thriller by the bestselling author of The Wish Child, Remote Sympathy and The Axeman’s Carnival.
Catherine Chidgey’s novels have been published to international acclaim. Her first, In a Fishbone Church, won Best First Book at the New Zealand Book Awards and at the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize (South East Asia and South Pacific). In the UK it won the Betty Trask Award and was longlisted for the Orange Prize. Her second, Golden Deeds, was a Notable Book of the Year in the New York Times Book Review and a Best Book in the LA Times. Catherine has won the Prize in Modern Letters, the Katherine Mansfield Award, the Katherine Mansfield Fellowship, the Janet Frame Fiction Prize, and the Acorn Foundation Fiction Prize for The Wish Child. She lives in Ngāruawāhia and lectures in Creative Writing at the University of Waikato. Her 2020 novel, Remote Sympathy, was shortlisted for the DUBLIN Literary Award and the Jann Medlicott Acorn Prize for Fiction, and was longlisted for the Women’s Prize for Fiction. The Axeman’s Carnival was published in 2022.
Praise for The Axeman’s Carnival
‘The Axeman’s Carnival is remarkable, brilliant, a classic in the making.’ —Rachael King, Newsroom
‘It is a dazzling and dizzying kaleidoscope portrayal of humanity and the natural world. There is beauty and brutality, love and violence, hilarity and disaster.’ —Hannah Tunnicliffe, Kete Books
‘One of the greatest works of storytelling I’ve read in such a long time, effortless and memorable.’ —Courtney Johnston, Things to Read
‘The magpie’s skill as a mimic is central to the book, providing comedy and poignance.’ —Bryan Gibson, Farmers Weekly
‘New Zealand novel of the year and bird of the year. Chidgey is one of our most accomplished novelists and her mischievous magpie creation, Tama, narrated a Kiwi gothic fable that perfectly balances darkness and light, violence and humour, on a remote South Island farm. The bird is the word.’ —Philip Matthews, Stuff Best Books of the Year
‘Tama the Magpie stars in this outrageously good rural drama that ramps up and up. A must-read from one of the country’s most acclaimed and generative writers.’ —Spinoff Christmas Picks
‘One of our very best novelists knocks it out of the park.’ —Kelly Ana Morey, New Zealand Herald Books of the Year