TINA LAW in The Press, 22 August 2011
Seven judges from New Zealand and across the world chose Cleave's novel above three other finalists including Neil Cross, Paddy Richardson and Alix Bosco (aka Greg McGee).
The judges praised Blood Men, which was set in Christchurch, as a "gruesomely gripping story told in clean, sharp prose, with authentically laconic dialogue and flashes of dark humour".
Cleave (right) said it was the first time in six years of being published that he felt like he was being taken seriously in New Zealand.
He has sold 600,000 books in 19 countries, but only a tiny fraction of those sales were in New Zealand.
Cleave hoped to top the one million mark next year.
In 2007 his first book, The Cleaner, was the bestselling crime novel on website Amazon in Germany. For three months the book was the second highest selling book on the website in Germany.
He has also just met with a French film producer who was keen to turn The Cleaner into a multimillion-dollar movie.