& the World of Murray Whelan

Nice Try


Forget Atlanta, everybody hates the Yanks—Melbourne’s bid for the Olympics is in the bag. Or nearly in the bag, which is where Murray Whelan, all-purpose political dogsbody and soon-to-be-ex-smoker, comes in. Recruited to head off an Aboriginal protest that threatens the bid, Murray is confident of stitching up a deal with the Kooris in three days and sucking down his last coffin nail inside a week. Tops.

But then a steroid-crazed bodybuilder goes on the rampage and a young black athlete is murdered—and soon Murray’s investigative instinct is getting as tough a workout as his nicotine patch.


“As hilarious as it is immensely satisfying. I can’t think of anyone, from fans of Robert Barrett through to Elmore Leonard, not enjoying this book.”
– Herald Sun

“Full of deft one-liners…Whelan’s wry social commentaries, ironic observations and many failed attempts at getting the girl make him one of Australian crime fiction’s most attractive characters, and Maloney one of the genre’s most gifted writers.”
– Who Weekly

“Tight pace, believable dialogue, terrific puzzle: Melbourne may have missed the Olympics, but they have a first-rate amateur sleuth.”
– Kirkus Reviews

“With this book Maloney confirms his rank as the comic thriller exponent nonpareil.”
– Australian Book Review

“Should be prescribed reading for students in Politics 101, the apparatchiks, the tribalism, the way pragmatism rules and more, are all centre stage and around these points Maloney weaves a good yarn. Perhaps a cross between Balzac and Robert G. Barrett.”
– Alternative Law Journal

“Maloney’s prose is more than a ‘nice try’ at combining social and political satire with the conventions of the crime novel. It’s spot on.”
– Age