New Zealand author Neil Cross discusses his latest novel The Burial in UK publication Metro. “I’ve always been fascinated by guilt,” says the 39-year-old, who divides his time between producing fiction and writing for TV drama Spooks. “But I was also interested in the fact that around 80 per cent of murders are committed by someone who is drunk. What must it be like to wake up and remember you are a murderer? The thought makes me feel sick.” Cross excels at uneasy landscapes, be they urban, rural or psychological: from Natural History to the Booker-nominated Always the Sun, everyday settings are so subtly infected with menace it takes a while to locate just what is making the narrative so frightening. Burial is pure story, with virtually every word geared to conveying the emotionally isolated essence of a life circumscribed by near-intolerable guilt. Cross’ first novel, Mr In-Between, was published in 1989.