- Gold Dagger: This Dark Road to MercyÂ by Wiley Cash (Doubleday)
- Ian Fleming Steel Dagger: An Officer and a SpyÂ by Robert Harris (Random House)
- John Creasey New Blood Dagger: The Axeman’s JazzÂ by Ray Celestin (Mantle)
- International Dagger: The SiegeÂ by Arturo Perez-Reverte, translated by Frank Wynne [Spain] (Weidenfeld)
- Historical Dagger: The Devil in the MarshalseaÂ by Antonia Hodgson (Hodder & Stoughton)
- Debut Dagger: The MovementÂ by Jody Sabral
- Diamond Dagger (Lifetime Achievement): Simon Brett
- Non-Fiction Dagger: The Siege: Three Days of Terror Inside the TajÂ by Adrian Levy and Cathy Scott-Clark (Viking)
- Short Story Dagger: ‘Fedora’ by John Harvey (published in Deadly PleasuresÂ edited by Martin Edwards â€” Severn House)
The winners will be announced atÂ Bouchercon, the World Mystery Convention, which is to be held in Cleveland at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, over the weekend of October 4-7. The award is named after the “mystery cat” in T.S. Eliot’s Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats). To be nominated, books and Stories need to have been published in the USA during 2011.
The nonimees are:
Best Mystery Novel
1222Â by Anne Holt, translated by Marlaine Delargy (Scribner)
Claire DeWitt and the City of the DeadÂ by Sara Gran (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)
The House of SilkÂ by Anthony Horowitz (Mulholland Books)
The RidgeÂ by Michael Koryta (Little, Brown)
A Trick of the LightÂ by Louise Penny (Minotaur)
The Two Deaths of Daniel HayesÂ by Marcus Sakey (Dutton)
Hell & GoneÂ by Duane Swierczynski (Mulholland Books)
Best First Mystery Novel
Â Learning to SwimÂ by Sara J. Henry (Crown)
Nazareth ChildÂ by Darrell James (Midnight Ink)
Turn of MindÂ by Alice LaPlante (Atlantic Monthly)
All Cry ChaosÂ by Leonard Rosen (Permanent Press)
The InformationistÂ by Taylor Stevens (Crown)
Before I Go To SleepÂ by S. J. Watson (Harper)
Best Mystery-Related Nonfiction
Books, Crooks and Counselors: How to Write Accurately About Criminal Law and Courtroom ProcedureÂ by Leslie Budewitz (Linden)
Agatha Christie: Murder in the Making: More Stories and Secrets from Her NotebooksÂ by John Curran (HarperCollins)
Wilkie Collins, Vera Caspary and the Evolution of the Casebook NovelÂ by A.B. Emrys (McFarland)
The Savage City: Race, Murder, and a Generation on the EdgeÂ by T.J. English (William Morrow)
The Sookie Stackhouse CompanionÂ by Charlaine Harris (Ace)
Best Mystery Short Story
“Disarming” by Dana Cameron (EQMM, June 2011)
“Facts Exhibiting Wantonness” by Trina Corey (EQMM, Nov. 2011)
“Palace by the Lake” by Daryl Wood Gerber (Fish Tales: The Guppy Anthology, Wildside Press)
“Truth and Consequences” by Barb Goffman (Mystery Times Ten, Buddhapuss Ink)
“Heat of Passion” by Kathleen Ryan (A Twist of Noir, Feb. 14, 2011)
“The Man Who Took His Hat Off to the Driver of the Train” by Peter Turnbull (EQMM, March/April 2011)
Sue Feder Historical Mystery Award
Naughty in NiceÂ by Rhys Bowen (Berkley)
Narrows GateÂ by Jim Fusilli (AmazonEncore)
Dandy Gilver and the Proper Treatment of BloodstainsÂ by Catriona McPherson (Thomas Dunne/Minotaur)
Mercuryâ€™s RiseÂ by Ann Parker (Poisoned Pen)
Troubled BonesÂ by Jeri Westerson (Minotaur)
A Lesson in SecretsÂ by Jacqueline Winspear (Harper)
Beating off stiff competition from a shortlist that included genre giants Ian Rankin, Peter James and Mark Billingham R.J. Ellory also beat a number of longlisted heavy-weights from the cream of Britainâ€™s crime writers including Val McDermid, Martina Cole and Peter Robinson.
The Birmingham born author was presented the prize at a ceremony hosted by broadcaster and regular festival goer Mark Lawson on the opening night (Thursday 22 July) of the Theakstons Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival in Harrogate. He receives a Â£3,000 cash prize, as well as a handmade, engraved beer barrel provided by Theakstons Old Peculier.
Now in its sixth year, the Theakstons Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year Award was created to celebrate the very best in crime writing, and is open to British and Irish authors whose novels were published in paperback in 2009.
The judging panel, which included Jenni Murray, BBC Radio 4 broadcaster and author; John Dugdale, Guardian Associate Media Editor; Natalie Haynes, comedian and journalist; Simon Theakston, Executive Director of T&R Theakston Ltd; and a public online vote that represented a 20% share of the all-new judging process, was very impressed by Elloryâ€™s novel. Simon Theakston, Executive Director of T&R Theakston, said:
â€œThe standard of the shortlist was particularly high this year and our decision was a tough one. However, R.J. Elloryâ€™s A Simple Act of Violence is a most impressive, fascinating and surprising book and a worthy winner of this yearâ€™s Theakstons Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year Award. A fast-paced thriller, each page seems to bring about a new twist and take you deeper into a world that could only have come from a true master of crime fiction. â€
Ellory was completely stunned upon hearing the news: â€œI donâ€™t think anyone not in my shoes can understand the definition of speechless. I am utterly speechless. This has really taken me aback. I feel acknowledged for doing something different. Thank you, Iâ€™m grateful beyond words.â€
The 2010 Shortlist in full
In the Dark by Mark Billingham
The Surrogate by Tania Carver
A Simple Act of ViolenceÂ by R.J. Ellory
The Crossing PlacesÂ by Elly Griffiths
Dead Tomorrow by Peter James
Gallows Lane by Brian McGilloway
Doors Open by Ian Rankin
Child 44 by Tom Rob Smith
The Crime Writersâ€™ Association is pleased to announce that:
William Brodrick wins the CWA Gold Dagger for A Whispered Name
John Hart wins the CWA Ian Fleming Steel Dagger for The Last Child
Johan Theorin wins the CWA John Creasey (New Blood) Dagger for Echoes from The Dead
Philip Kerr wins the Ellis Peters Historical Award for If The Dead Rise Not.
The CWA Dagger Awards are the longest established literary awards in the UK and are internationally recognised as a mark of excellence and achievement. In winning the Gold Dagger and the Â£2500 prize, William Brodrick joins a long and illustrious line stretching back to 1955 and The Little Walls by Winston Graham, now best known as the author of the Poldark novels.
The judges described A Whispered Name as â€˜A moving novel that stretches the parameters of the crime genre, intertwining past and present and throwing light on a neglected aspect of World War One.â€™ In accepting his award, William Brodrick said â€œI find myself in the hinterland of speechlessness… I would like to dedicate the award to the memory of Harry Patch and the generation he came to represent.â€
John Hart, the winner of the CWA Ian Fleming Steel Dagger and a Â£2000 cheque is the Edgar-Award winning author of two international bestsellers, The King of Lies and Down River. The judges said that The Last Child, his third book, was â€œAccomplished and ambitious piece of southern gothic. It is beautifully rendered, with a cast of memorable characters – full of pathos, atmosphere and mystery. A cracking and original story.â€
Johan Theorin, the winner of the CWA John Creasey (New Blood) Dagger and a Â£1000 cheque, said â€œBritain is home to most of the greatest mystery writers in the world, from Conan Doyle, Christie and Creasey and up to all the fine writers who are still alive and active today – and as a Swede I couldnâ€™t dream of competing with them. But to my big surprise and honour, I guess I have.â€ The judges described Echoes from The Dead as â€œa finely written intrigue … in which the island where the action takes place is as much a player in the drama as the people are.â€
Philip Kerr, the author of the CWA Ellis Peters Historical Award winning If The Dead Rise Not is the author of five other acclaimed Bernie Gunther novels and is acknowledged as one of todayâ€™s finest thriller writers. He learned of his success at a presentation ceremony held at Six Fitzroy Square, London on 29 October 2009.
The Crime Writersâ€™ Association is delighted to announce the shortlists for a number of this yearâ€™s Daggers – the prestigious awards that celebrate the very best in crime and thriller writing in 2009.
The CWA Dagger Awards are the longest established literary awards in the UK and are internationally recognised as a mark of excellence and achievement.
The winners will be announced at a drinks reception held at the Tiger Tiger nightspot in London on the evening of July 15. At that event, the shortlist will also be announced for the Gold, John Creasey (New Blood) and Ian Fleming Steel Daggers.
CWA Chair Margaret Murphy said: â€œThe strength of the Daggers shortlists, and even those writers who missed out, shows that crime writing remains in good shape.â€Â
The first phase of shortlists are as follows:
THE CWA INTERNATIONAL DAGGER
For crime, thriller, suspense or spy novels which have been translated into English from their original language, for UK publication. Â£1000 prize money for the author and Â£500 for the translator
Karin Alvtegen, Shadow, translated from the Swedish by McKinley Burnett, Canongate 2009 
Judgesâ€™ comments: This well-crafted novel of damage repeated from generation to generation infuses melodrama with a meditation on the cost of writing.
Arnaldur IndriÃ°ason, Arctic Chill, translated from the Icelandic by Bernard Scudder & Victoria Cribb, Harvill Secker 2008 
Judgesâ€™ comments:Â IndriÃ°ason employs a recognised police-procedural form to transcend a familiar Scandinavian gloom into something more interesting – an insistent examination of Iceland’s discovery that its apparently tight little island is implicated in a world-wide social problem.
Stieg Larsson, The Girl Who Played With Fire (MacLehose Press, Quercus), Trans. From the Swedish by Reg Keeland, MacLehose Quercus 2009 
Judgesâ€™ comments: This second novel of the Millennium trilogy interweaves an unusual range of characters in a plot of remarkable complexity.
Jo NesbÃ¸, The Redeemer, translated from the Norwegian by Don Bartlett, Harvill Secker 2009 
Judgesâ€™ comments: Harry Hole, NesbÃ¸’s series detective, dominates an impressively twisty plot which ranges from his own career to Norway’s past.
Johan Theorin, Echoes from the Dead, translated from the Swedish by Marlaine Delargy, Doubleday 2008 
Judgesâ€™ comments: Working within the genre, Theorin evokes place and social history as well as character, while mastering the balance of clues and plot-twists.
Fred Vargas, The Chalk Circle Man, translated from the French by SiÃ¢n Reynolds Harvill Secker 2009 
Judgesâ€™ comments: This first Adamsberg novel is already a remarkable demonstration of Vargas’s ability to open with an odd event and follow it into an unhappy past.
Ann Cleeves, non-voting chair, is an award-winning crime writer.
MaiLin Li works for Kirklees Libraries and is a freelance literature specialist and promoter.
Ruth Morse teaches English Literature at the University of Paris. She is a frequent contributor to the Times Literary Supplement.Â
John Murray-Browne is a bookseller.Â
CWA SHORT STORY DAGGER
Any crime short story first published in the UK in English in a publication that pays for contributions, or broadcast in the UK in return for payment, between 1st June, 2008 and 31st May, 2009.Â Prize money Â£1500.
Speaking of Lust by Lawrence Block from Crime Express series (Five Leaves Publications)
Judgesâ€™ comments: Four tales of lasciviousness and its fatal aftermath by one of the godfathers of the genre.
One Serving of Bad Luck by Sean Chercover from Killer Year, Lee Child, ed. (Mira)
Judgesâ€™ comments: Neat, tight and economical, this is a new take on the private eye; the auguries are good for a major crime writing career for this writer.
Cougar by Laura Lippman from Two of the Deadliest, Elizabeth George, ed. (Hodder & Stoughton)
Judgesâ€™ comments: A serrated knife in the gut of gender politics by an expert practitioner of the genre.
The Price of Love by Peter Robinson from The Blue Religion, Michael Connelly, ed. ( Back Bay Books)Â
Judgesâ€™ comments: A boy finally understands the brutal criminal implications of an incident in his childhood.
Served Cold by ZoÃ« Sharp from The Mammoth Book of Best British Crime, Maxim Jakubowski, ed. (Constable & Robinson)
Judgesâ€™ comments: Justice, revenge, danger. All elements of a tale of lost love and its tragic consequences.
Motherâ€™s Milk by Chris Simms from The Mammoth Book of Best British Crime, Maxim Jakubowski, ed. (Constable & Robinson)
Judgesâ€™ comments: A deceptively low key story of a thief and a conman who has the tables painfully turned on him.
Simon Brett is a radio presenter, man of the theatre and writer of civilized and witty crime entertainments.
Ayo Onatade – not content with running the lives of senior judges, she is also a well-connected crime journalist.
CWA DAGGER IN THE LIBRARY
Sponsored by The Random House Group
Authors are nominated by UK libraries and Readersâ€™ Groups and judged by a panel of librarians. It isÂ awarded to an author for a body of work, rather than a single title.Â Prize money: Â£1,500, plus Â£300 to a participating libraryâ€™s readersâ€™ group.
Judgesâ€™ comments: His books are gripping right from the opening line and notable for descriptions of dead and decaying bodies. Excellently hidden twists and turns. Very sympathetic lead character. Bantam
Judgesâ€™ comments: An unusual hero in an unusual setting. Quirky, funny and very appealing. His books are a truly beautiful read. Publisher: Quercus
R J Ellory
Judgesâ€™ comments: Sensitively written. Full of depth. Multi-layered and with a real sense of place and an understanding, in the widest sense, of political manoeuverings. Orion
Judgesâ€™ comments: Original, lively and colourful. Her novels allow the reader to learn effortlessly about little-known historical backgrounds. Harper Collins
Judgesâ€™ comments: Very authentic police procedurals with realistic settings. Dark and pacy. Pan Macmillan
Judgesâ€™ comments: Has an ability to write convincingly as varied, authentically-drawn characters. Sphere
Judgesâ€™ general comments:
A very strong and varied list from which it was difficult to select the short list – reflecting the vigour and range of contemporary crime writing.
Chair: Mark Benjamin, formerly Team Librarian with Northumberland County Council
Vice-Chair: Cheney Gardner, Reading Development Manager, London Borough of Richmond on Thames
Wendy Molyneux, Community Access Librarian, Warrington Borough Council
Jonathan Gibbs, I.T. & Operations Librarian, Barbican Library, City of London
Karen Fraser, Customer Services Librarian, Shetland Library
Helen McNabb, Bibliographic Services Officer, Vale of Glamorgan Council
Deb Ryan, Senior Librarian Reader Services, RNIB National Library Services
CWA DEBUT DAGGERÂ
Sponsored by Orion
The Debut Dagger is a new-writing competition open to anyone writing in the English language who has not yet had a novel published commercially. First prize is Â£500 plus two free tickets to the prestigious CWA Dagger Awards and nightâ€™s stay for two in a top London hotel. All shortlisted entrants receive a generous selection of crime novels and professional assessments of their entries, and are also be invited to the Dagger Awards presentations.
Frank Burkett – A View from the Clock Tower (Australia)
Judgesâ€™ comment:Â An interesting first-person portrayal of a murder mystery set in Australiaâ€¦ family betrayals and dark secrets from the past.
Aoife Clifford – My First Big Book of Murder (Australia)
Judgesâ€™ comments:Â A crime caper with witty prose and funny visual jokes.
CJ Harper – Backdrop (USA)
Judgesâ€™ comments:Â A likeable PI protagonist and a solid time slip plotâ€¦ the 1950 Hollywood setting is sexyâ€¦
Madeleine Harris-CallwayÂ – The Land of Sun and FunÂ (Canada)
Judgesâ€™ comments:Â A strong sense of place throughout, coupled with good characterisation and a sense of horror.
Renata Hill – Sex, Death and Chocolate (Canada)
Judgesâ€™ comments:Â An entertaining read with witty dialogue and a quick-moving plot.
Mick Laing – The Sirius Patrol (UK)
Judgesâ€™ comments:Â The enclosed feel of the small Greenland community, the characters and tensions within, make fascinating reading.
Susan Lindgren – Forgotten Treasures (USA)
Judgesâ€™ comments: Atmospheric, spooky,Â and absorbing â€“ the heroine is an interesting character with an intriguing background.
Catherine Oâ€™Keefe – The Pathologist (Canada)
Judgesâ€™ comments:Â An uncomfortable, sophisticated,Â read that also manages to be suspenseful.
Danielle Ramsay – PaterfamiliasÂ (UK)
Judgesâ€™ comments:Â Strong plot with good red herrings and a clever twist.
Germaine Stafford – A Vine Time for Trouble (Italy)
Judgesâ€™ comments:Â Nicely written cosy-style murder mysteryâ€¦with the added enticement of the Italian setting. Â
Martin Ungless – Idiot Wind (UK)
Judgesâ€™ comments:Â A clever and ambitious story tackling challenging issues.
Alan Wright – Murder at the SÃ©ance (UK)
Judgesâ€™ comments:Â Convincing settings, atmospheric and with an air of authenticity.
Emma Beswetherick – Senior Fiction Editor, Piatkus
Julie Crisp – Senior Commissioning Editor, Macmillan
Sara O’Keeffe – Senior Commissioning Editor, Orion
Euan Thorneycroft – Authors’ agent (A M Heath)
Julia Wisdom – Publishing Editor, HarperCollins
Chair: Margaret Murphy, Chair of the CWA
The latest D.I. Faraday novel, The Price Of Darkness by Graham Hurley starts off with what looks like a professional hit on a property developer. The dead man was involved in an M.O.D. site in Portsmouth with potentially rich pickings.Â Then a government minister is assassinated. Whatâ€™s the connection? Also, thereâ€™s a problem with ex-copper and Faradayâ€™s old sparring partner Paul Winter who is now working for Bazza Mackenzie, Pompeyâ€™s leading crime lord. But has he really left the side of the angels? Hurley just gets better and better, and this book is his best so far. Elvis McBeth
The Big Sleep is Raymond Chandlerâ€™s masterpiece. The best crime novel ever written bar none. Almost single handedly Chandler invented the genre of the hard drinking, hard smoking, hard loving, sharply dressed, first person, private detective, with a wisecrack for every occasion, and a bullet for every bad guy and gal. Over the last seventy years his hero Philip Marlowe has been the template for dozens of crime writers. Just think Ross Macdonald, John D. MacDonald, Robert B. Parker,Â Derek Marlowe, Alan Sharp, Timothy Harris, Roger L. Simon, Robert Crais, and yours truly, plus loads more. (Not all first person I admit, but well in the Chandler groove, and if you donâ€™t know any of these authors, Google them)
The novel opens with a paragraph that has been quoted time and time again as a classic of the genre. I donâ€™t intend to reprint it here, just read the book if you havenâ€™t already. And if you havenâ€™t shame on you.
Simply, the plot of the novel is that a rich old man with two beautiful daughters who make Paris Hilton look tame, is being blackmailed. Enter Marlowe, who cuts a swathe through the Los Angeles demi monde, and solves the case quick fast.
Great plot, great characters, great atmosphere. Just the greatest.
Rarely out of print, Penguin put out a new paperback edition in 2005.