Novels‎ > ‎

Eyes And Knives

Eyes And Knives is the 4th full-length novel I've completed but the first I have had published. It was named as Berkelouw Books' "Book of the Week" the week it went on sale.

There is an excerpt available from this site if you're keen to have a taste. You can also download a free audio recording of the first 15pp.

See a synopsis, comments and reviews below.

 Buy "Eyes And Knives" for AU$10 including postage Australia-wide.

Send an email with "Buy Eyes And Knives" in the subject line.
Eyes And Knives is an action-filled satire based around the activities of a criminal organisation called StarMarket Systems and the government agency trying to expose them.

The Research & Development team at StarMarket Systems have come up with a new technology, through genetic manipulation, to give animals indefinite lifespans. The week before they're due to launch their new product, called PermaPets, a member of their Senior Management Team commits suicide during a board meeting. Before he's even hit the ground, a witness abandons her baby and goes off roaming the city streets, until she collapses the following morning with no memory of what she'd been doing.

Both StarMarket Systems and the government agency discover that a strange force is taking control of people and wreaking havoc throughout the city, moving from person to person whenever it wants a new "vessel". The two organisations attempt to capture this force while at the same time waging war against each other.

The action revolves around a local police department, the Senior Management Team of StarMarket Systems, and a group of secret agents from the government, all of whom are hoping to use the "possessor" for their own gains but would settle for being alive at the end of the week.

It's a fast-paced novel filled with action, mystery, sex, violence and betrayal.


You can purchase a copy direct from this website. See my Publications page for the details.

Comments from the Industry
This is what industry professionals have said about Eyes And Knives:

We’ve had a look through the 50-page excerpt. It definitely made all of us here in the editorial department sit back and take notice. What stood out, in our opinion, was the incredible verve, pace and ingenuity of the text – it appears you have created a real page-turner!
Editor, Hardie Grant

I’ve just finished reading it and really enjoyed it! It’s funny and clever, I like your narrative style, and also the fact that the story draws on a lot of current topical and political issues. is very good and I definitely think that with the right publisher you will stand a good chance of getting somewhere.

Orion Editorial (UK)

You have a confident tone, the prose is clear and crisp (and funny!)

I'll be the first to congratulate you when you win the Vogel or the ABC fiction award.
Fiona Inglis, literary agent

…this is an engaging and original story, and we enjoyed the colour and freshness of your writing…

Your premise is original and appealing...
Publishing assistant, Allen & Unwin

It's action packed and slickly written, with a nice twist at the end.

Publisher, Allen & Unwin                                                                                                                                              

Who says authors don't get groupies?

Feedback from readers

Finally finished your book and I thought it was terrific. Really well-written, insightful, gripping and funny. I really liked how your book was focused on corporate and govt wrongdoing rather than ethnic minorities, which so many books of that kind tend to do. The political references were also pertinent!
Thalia Anthony, law lecturer at Sydney Uni and academic author

First thing I have to say is: What a great read! I loved it. Absolutely loved it. I'm impressed at how well everything was wrapped up... Nicely done!

Thank you for throwing all of those twists into your story. What an entertaining read. I'm honestly surprised that no one had picked it up to publish. But, in the same respect, they might have torn it to shreds to suit their publishing house, and that would have been a shame.

Kim Grenfell, novelist and moderator of

I have read it and I think it is wickedly humorous and clearly you have real abilities as a writer, not the least of which is getting this far with this book!
Neal Drinnan, fiction author


Eyes and Knives

Review by Andrew Braun

Writers Beat Quarterly magazine

Thriller? Sure. Sci-fi? A sprinkling. Action? It’s got the voltage to qualify! Pete Malicki’s novel Eyes and Knives, to be released in April of 2009, is a rapid-fire, slickly written story of conspiracy, treachery, and the gritty guts of corruption. What makes this book isn’t the characters—it has too many main characters that are jumped between too often for you to develop lasting sympathy with any of them—nor is it the dialogue, description, or sentence structure. It’s the diabolical, driven plot that tosses you onto a razor’s edge and forces you to run along it until you know what happens next. Suspense is the name of the game here, and Malicki does an excellent job of combining sharp, determined writing with a page-turning story. As the novel begins, it seems a little imposing, with four or five separate characters, all with different stories, taking the spotlight in the first twenty pages. Relax—it all begins to click after a little while, and if you pay attention you’ll be able to sort out the diverse cast before it’s all over, even if you won’t attain quite the intimacy with them that one or two characters provide.

As stories go, it’s quite a ripping tale! Though the central concept—possession—is deeply overused, Malicki has taken your tired old gin and olive and shaken a few twists into his martini. A possessor with two conflicting wills, strange ideas of fun, and an interest in the human race—particularly our movies; Kill Bill, anyone?—lends a minty-fresh zing to the idea. Even current issues are addressed as by-lines, such as cloning, genetics, and, of course, the eternal themes of greed, power, manipulation, and the darker side of human nature. Even if the writing had been of a poorer quality, the story still would’ve made it worth a once-over.

An editor with a good eye would have done a general clean-up for commas, dialogue flow, and isolated cases of awkward wording, but there’s nothing to inhibit overall readability of Eyes and Knives, unless you’re one of the occasional obsessive-compulsive grammarian types. There is room for improvement, but nothing to drag it down below a good level of literacy.

Despite reading it in PDF e-book format (hard on the eyes and not terribly portable) I genuinely had trouble leaving this story alone for too long, which is more than I can say for a good few others. Being Malicki’s first published novel, Eyes and Knives is predictably a little rough around the edges. However, his writing has none of the lackadaisical nature that would have made the book seem more sloppy than unrefined. The high-pressure, rapid storytelling propels the words along at a good clip, and dips in the energy are more of a break to allow the reader to catch their breath than a slump for the writer.

Eyes and Knives

Reviewed by Anne Van Alkemade


Eyes And Knives by Pete Malicki opens with this amazing declaration:
“In the final minutes before he died, Paul Hirsch was bored.”

Before you know it, you need urgently to find out why! Why he died. Why he was bored. How he died? And who the hell was Paul Hirsch anyway?

Simple questions as they seem to be, the path to the answer is a complex one, taking a week in the lives of the key characters to unveil.

Pete has presented the reader, in this his fourth novel, with a veritable feast of shady characters, luscious (and amoral) fem fatales, even a mad scientist with a genetically modified ‘member’ thrown in for good … er … measure. And he is as perplexed as everyone else about what it is that’s making people in the streets of Sydney spontaneously explode or commit random killing sprees.

As chilling as that may seem, Pete doesn’t allow the reader to become too invested in the victims and leaves the tone of the book entertaining and fast-paced, in a similar vein to a good Matthew Reilly but without the one-legged Sarge!

The language is polished, the action gripping and Pete presents the reader with a big enough hook to compel the reader to delve deep into the narrative. My only criticism is that perhaps there are too many named characters who are of very similar bent and role, making the narrative a little confusing at times. However, overall, this is a book most worthy of a quiet Sunday afternoon or three.

Helm Publishing
ISBN – 978-0-9806194-0-9

I would also have to say I’d be steering a wide course around Pete if ever an opening came up in the “Senior Management Team”. ;o)