Tanya Bretherton: true crime writer, sociologist and researcher

For this week’s Murder Mondays interview, Sisters in Crime’s national co-convenor, Karina Kilmore talked with Sydney true crime author, Tanya Bretherton, who won the BAD Sydney Crime Writers’ Festival Danger Prize earlier this month.

(Click on the image below to go to the YouTube recording.)







Tanya is a respected scholar with a PhD in sociology. She held a position of Senior Research Fellow at the University of Sydney for fifteen years and authored numerous publications in the academic and public sphere for twenty years.

Currently she is working as a freelance researcher and writer.

Tanya dates her interest in the true crime genre to childhood. Her household didn’t have a lot of books but her dad was an avid reader of murder mysteries. So almost every book in the house had a dead body in it!

To this day, she says, “I write stories that have a twist in some way or other, and if I don’t find that twist, I will abandon a subject as a possible book and move on to another case.”

With her four true crime books, Tanya has been able to convert detailed research into thought-provoking works which are accessible to a general readership – and have garnered a lot of critical attention.

Her first book, The Suitcase Baby, was shortlisted for the Ned Kelly Award, the Danger Prize and the Waverley Library ‘Nib’ Award. Her second book, The Suicide Bride, was shortlisted for the Danger Prize and recently she won the Danger Prize for The Killing Streets (all books published by Hachette).

Murders Mondays are available on Sisters in Crime YouTube channel at 6pm on Mondays. Previous guests include Robin Bowles, Astrid Scholte, Jenny Blackford, Susan Hurley, Emma Viskic, Meg Mundell, J. P. Powell, Kerry Greenwood, Lili Wilkinson, Petronella McGovern, Heather Rose, Malla Nunn, Sara Paretsky, Judith Rossell, Sulari Gentill, Sarah Epstein, Mirandi Riwoe, Kerry McGinnis, Kathy Reichs, Ellie Marney, Katherine Kovacic, Candice Fox, Anne Buist, Dervla McTiernan and Val McDermid.