MH370 passenger's wife upset over thriller book
The wife of a New Zealander who was aboard the missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 is "disgusted" at the release of a fictional account of the mystery by a Kiwi author.
Exactly three months after the jet vanished on a flight to Beijing with 239 people on board, author Scott Maka has released the thriller novella 'MH370', an e-book.
Danica Weeks, the wife of missing New Zealander Paul Weeks, said releasing a book so soon after the tragedy and without information on what happened made her "angry".
It was "hurtful" to the families of the people on board the flight, Weeks said.
"I'd rather they'd put their efforts to helping them find the truth to be honest.
"We're going to be spending the rest of our lives doing that."
Weeks said people wanting to write books and make movies about the mystery should wait until they had all the information.
"This is our lives."
The author, with the pen name Scott Maka, said he never intended for the relatives of the missing families to be the book's audience or even find out about it.
"I wasn't writing it for the families."
Maka, who is based in Malaysia, said he wanted to apologise to Weeks.
"I'm saddened to hear that she's reacted like that, I'm upset that she's upset."
The author acknowledged the book's publication came amid controversy sparked by US and Indian studios working on MH370 films.
Maka said he was "worried" about the book's reception and he hoped its publication would not upset friends and relatives of the missing passengers.
However, people who were not directly affected by the plane's disappearance were likely to enjoy the book and not be upset by it, he said.
Maka said he decided to write the novella after a "hair-raising" Air Asia flight between Malaysia and Vietnam just a week after the aircraft's disappearance.
"I was damn scared. Flying doesn't usually bother me, but knowing that another aircraft had just vanished on the same flight-path made me very, very jittery."
During his flight the communications consultant and former journalist turned his thoughts to possible causes for the MH370 disappearance, he said.
Maka said before his flight landed he came up with a "fascinating scenario", which he decided to turn into a book.
The first draft of the book took less than two months to finish and was released as an e-book this morning.
The book, which was Maka's first to be published, already had hundreds of downloads.
The 45-year-old described the novella as "a twist-type thriller" focusing on a woman passenger's involvement in an international intrigue.
Meanwhile, Weeks is supporting a crowd-funding campaign to reward whistleblower information about the disappearance of MH370 with more than $3 million cash.
Weeks said the families of the missing passengers had received little information from Malaysian Authorities and they were sick of waiting on the official investigation.
"We've lost trust so we've thought outside the box."
Weeks said she hoped someone came forward with a positive lead on what happened to the plane.
The goal was to raise a further $2m, on top of the $3m reward, to fund a private investigator to follow the leads they received.
Finding out what happened to the plane would help the families, the flying public and the aviation industry, she said.
"It doesn't get any easier."
Finding the plane and finding out what happened would give families the closure they needed, Weeks said.
"We're desperate, we need to try anything."
The campaign Reward MH370: Search for the Truth will launch tomorrow. To donate go to indiegogo.com.
This story has been edited since it was first published so more information could be sought.