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  • Published: 19 March 2019
  • ISBN: 9780143773764
  • Imprint: RHNZ Vintage
  • Format: Trade Paperback
  • Pages: 480
  • RRP: $38.00

The Bad Seed

The Night Book & Soon



An omnibus edition combining the brilliant novels The Night Book and Soon.

Now combined into a major TV drama, these two connected novels by award-winning writer Charlotte Grimshaw take an unflinching look at politics and power, contemporary New Zealand society and the arid morality of the privileged.

In The Night Book, doctor and party donor Simon Lampton is drawn to Roza Hallwright, though he can’t quite put his finger on why. She leads a quiet, comfortable, orderly life with her politician husband David and her two stepchildren. But this peaceful existence is about to be changed forever. In the next few months there will be an election, and, if the polls are correct, Roza will become the Prime Minister's wife. She is relatively calm about the prospect, but meeting Simon will bring turmoil to both their lives.

In Soon, the Lampton family has come to spend a long hot summer at the Hallwrights’ large beach house. The weather is perfect and outwardly all is well, but the harmony is disturbed when Simon Lampton’s brother Ford arrives for a visit. Ford casts a cold eye over the company, barely disguising his contempt for David Hallwright. While Roza tells her young son made-up stories that reveal uncomfortable truths about their current lives, Simon will tell stories that conceal the truth about his.

Gripping, clever and moving, these two novels are an intensely humane look at the choices people make.

  • Published: 19 March 2019
  • ISBN: 9780143773764
  • Imprint: RHNZ Vintage
  • Format: Trade Paperback
  • Pages: 480
  • RRP: $38.00

About the author

Charlotte Grimshaw

Charlotte Grimshaw is the author of seven critically acclaimed novels and two outstanding collections of linked stories. As a reviewer in The New Zealand Listener noted: ‘A swarming energy pervades every page she writes . . . her descriptive writing has always been of the highest order. Most of it would work just as well as poetry.’ She is a winner of the BNZ Katherine Mansfield Award. Her story collection Opportunity was shortlisted for the prestigious Frank O’Connor International Prize, and Opportunity won New Zealand’s premier Montana Award for Fiction, along with the Montana Medal for Book of the Year. She was also the Montana Book Reviewer of the Year. Her story collection Singularity was shortlisted for the Frank O’Connor International Prize and the Asia Pacific Commonwealth Writers’ Prize. Her novel, The Night Book, was a finalist for the New Zealand Post Award. Grimshaw’s fifth novel, Soon, a bestseller in New Zealand, was published by Jonathan Cape in the UK and by Anansi in Canada and the United States. These two novels were made into a TV series, The Bad Seed, which screened on TV One in 2019. Her novel Mazarine was longlisted for the 2019 Ockham Book Awards. In 2021 she published her bestselling memoir The Mirror Book.

Her monthly column in Metro magazine won a Qantas Media Award. She was 2016 finalist in the Canon Media Award Reviewer of the Year, and won the 2018 Voyager Media Award for Reviewer of the Year.

Information on all of Charlotte Grimshaw’s books, reviews and selected reviews and columns can be found at www.charlottegrimshawauthor.com


In 2014, Charlotte Grimshaw and her husband Paul Grimshaw, along with law firm Grimshaw & Co, agreed to sponsor the Sargeson Fellowship, which awards a stipend and residency to writers. Charlotte Grimshaw is also a literary advisor for the Sargeson Trust. She has been involved in writing courses for young people run by the Michael King Writers’ Centre. She has judged the Sunday Star-Times Short Story award twice, and the Auckland University Ingenio short story award twice, and was the judge of the premier award of the 2014 BNZ Katherine Mansfield short story prize. She is also a literary advisor to the Academy of New Zealand Literature.


“Charlotte is one of New Zealand’s most accomplished and acclaimed writers with a significant publishing record. She has few peers as a fiction writer and essayist, and as a reviewer and public intellectual. Her work for newspapers and magazines reveals her curiosity about the world, her immersion in contemporary politics and social issues; it demonstrates her clear-sighted thinking, willingness to interrogate and expose, and desire to engage with difficult topics. Her writing can be searing and fearless. Her work as a fiction writer wins literary awards and is adapted for television, a rare combination anywhere, especially for an author who is not writing commercial or historical fiction.” – Dr Paula Morris MNZM

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Praise for The Bad Seed

There is no denying that Charlotte Grimshaw deserves her place amongst the top New Zealand writers of fiction. Her writing is sparse: words are not wasted. Characters are deftly penned and well-defined: each one can be imagined, liked or disliked. Settings are vividly described often in poetic imagery: ‘Beside her the reflection of rain ran down the wall, a waterfall of silver and grey’. . . . From the first few words of the opening sentence the plot leads the reader along effortlessly – this ability to instantly engage readers is an admirable feature of Charlotte Grimshaw’s writing. . . . Ethics, morality and the venality of political life are some of the many issues Grimshaw tackles in this compelling narrative all drawn together to a surprising conclusion. Or is there still another tale to tell?

David Turner, The Reader, Booksellers New Zealand

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Article
The Bad Seed - book club guide

Award-winning author Charlotte Grimshaw shares discussion points, ideas and questions for The Bad Seed - Book Club Guide. Now combined into a major TV drama, these two connected novels by award-winning writer Charlotte Grimshaw take an unflinching look at politics and power, contemporary New Zealand society and the arid morality of the privileged.

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