Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Song Dog” as Want to Read:
The Song Dog
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating

The Song Dog (Kramer and Zondi Mystery #8)

3.9 of 5 stars 3.90  ·  rating details  ·  72 ratings  ·  12 reviews
A unique mystery series that focuses not only on fascinating crimes, but also on the evils of apartheid in South Africa. When Lieutenant Tromp Kramer joins forces with brilliant Bantu Detective Sergeant Mickey Zondi to investigate an accidental murder, they are confronted by the mysterious and legendary Song Dog.
Paperback, 304 pages
Published August 1st 1992 by Warner Books (NY) (first published 1991)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Song Dog, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Song Dog

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 127)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
Written 20 years after the publication of the first story in the series, The Song Dog is in fact a prequel to the Kramer-Zondi novels of James McClure. It fills in the back story of how and where the two detectives came to meet and begin to work together. Prequels of this kind are rare but not unknown. I'm not sure what moves an author to do so after twenty years and seven stories in the series; maybe a sense that the first book didn't address how two such characters got to work together in the...more
Zeb Kantrowitz
There have been seven previous books in the “Kramer and Zondi” series about the two detectives in Apartheid South Africa. This book (which is the last of the series) is about the first meeting of Kramer and Zondi, and how he Kramer got involved with ‘the Widow Fourie’.

Kramer has just been promoted to Lieutenant but has also been transferred from his home provide of ‘Orange Free State’ (the State) to Trekkersberg in Zululand. It’s a cultural change for Kramer that he wasn’t prepared for with the...more
This is the second of McClure's Kramer and Zondi S. African police procedurals I've read, nearly a decade apart, I'd say. I couldn't remember the author's nor the main characters' names, so was delighted to come across this book as I remember enjoying The Steam Pig. I so enjoy McClure's ability to draw characters I remember from Africa, including English and Afrikaner city dwellers on game preserves, with sunburnt knees fair haired tots. He sets the scene beautifully, from hardscrabble dusty lan...more
Mariano Hortal
Publicado en

El otoño, con su tristeza inherente, es quizás una de esas épocas más propicias para leer cierto tipo de libros; en este caso se me antoja que las novelas negras pueden ser más que propicias para aprovecharlas en una de esas tardes lluviosas en las que tampoco apetece hacer mucho más que sentarse en un sillón, disfrutar de un buen café o infusión y, cómo no, de una buena novela policíaca.

Para ello hoy traigo tres recomendaciones de tres maestr...more
Dec 07, 2013 Craig added it
A recent event has prompted me to re-read the Kramer & Zondi novels of James McClure. They are set in apartheid South Africa. Tough and uncompromising they illustrate they practical relationship between a white and a black policeman of the time. They are also excellent examples of crime fiction of the police procedural variety. Featuring every shade of human venality, frailty and weakness, for me they provide perfect vehicle to illustrate the wasteful insanity of apartheid: The way the much...more
Luis Alberto Moreno
Magnífica novela negra. Permite, además de disfrutar de una trama bien construida y unos personajes estupendos, tener de fondo el horror del apartheid
Jim Naughton
Nov 14, 2007 Jim Naughton rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: fans of mysteries
Thanks to James McClure's novels, I learned about apartheid in South Africa. Like Maj Sjowall and Per Wahloo, who wrote mysteries that illuminated life in Sweden, the McClure series was eye-opening. It also was very entertaining. I've long since lost the paperbacks I had (or, I hope, gave them to someone else who'd appreciate them) and wish I had them now because they were instrumental in making me want to read more about other cultures and other continents.
Peter Brooks
James McClure's detective books are set in Pietermaritzburg in Apartheid South Africa, featuring two policemen, Kramer and Zondi. The plots are OK, and the writing not bad, what is excellent, though, is how they capture the zeitgeist.

The relationship between the white Afrikaans Kramer, and the black Zulu Zondi is brilliantly explored. The town, too, appears almost as a character.

The Song Dog by James McClure is as much about the South Africa in the early 60s as it is the mystery, which I found fascinating. Officially, this is #8 is the series, but it's actually a prequel, showing how Kramer and Zondi, the pair who anchor the series, first met, so it stood alone well for me.

Give this one a listen. I enjoyed it.
I had no idea about apartheid... I will definitely read more of his books, as the story itself is top-notch.
Too hyper macho for me.
At present, I have only the other Kramer-Zondi mysteries to go by -- but they paint a disturbing picture of South Africa under apartheid, which is probably more compelling than any of the mystery features.
Wanda marked it as to-read
Sep 24, 2014
Carmen marked it as to-read
Sep 24, 2014
Chris Dworin
Chris Dworin marked it as to-read
Sep 18, 2014
Edhoncho marked it as to-read
Sep 14, 2014
Melanie McKissock
Melanie McKissock marked it as to-read
Aug 23, 2014
Luke marked it as to-read
Jul 13, 2014
Tiffany marked it as to-read
Jul 11, 2014
Valerie marked it as to-read
Jul 02, 2014
Eva marked it as to-read
Jun 21, 2014
« previous 1 3 4 5 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
James Howe McClure was a British author and journalist best known for his Kramer and Zondi mysteries set in South Africa.

James McClure was born and raised in South Africa and educated in Pietermaritzburg, Natal at Scottsville School (1947–51), Cowan House (1952–54), and Maritzburg College (1955–58). He worked first as a commercial photographer with Tom Sharpe, who later wrote a series of celebrate...more
More about James McClure...
The Steam Pig The Gooseberry Fool The Caterpillar Cop The Artful Egg Snake

Share This Book

No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »