Tuesday, January 19, 2016

One Hell of an Edgars Race

Not coincidentally, today brings the 207th anniversary of author-editor Edgar Allan Poe’s birth as well as an announcement, by the Mystery Writers of America, of which books and writers have been nominated for the 2016 Edgar Awards. It strikes me as a strong line-up, particularly in the Best Critical/Biographical category, where Martin Edwards’ excellent book about Golden Age crime writers is facing off against both Nathan Ward’s insightful work about Dashiell Hammett and Suzanne Marrs and Tom Nolan’s collection of correspondence between authors Eudora Welty and Ross Macdonald.

Below is the complete list of this year’s Edgar contenders.

Best Novel:
The Strangler Vine, by M.J. Carter (Putnam)
The Lady from Zagreb, by Philip Kerr (Putnam)
Life or Death, by Michael Robotham (Mulholland)
Let Me Die in His Footsteps,
by Lori Roy (Dutton)
Canary, by Duane Swierczynski (Mulholland)
Night Life, by David C. Taylor (Forge)

Best First Novel by an American Author:
Past Crimes,
by Glen Erik Hamilton (Morrow)
Where All Light Tends to Go,
by David Joy (Putnam)
Luckiest Girl Alive,
by Jessica Knoll (Simon & Schuster)
The Sympathizer, by Viet Thanh Nguyen (Grove Press)
Unbecoming, by Rebecca Scherm (Viking)

Best Paperback Original:
The Long and Faraway Gone, by Lou Berney (Morrow)
The Necessary Death of Lewis Winter, by Malcolm Mackay (Mulholland)
What She Knew, by Gilly Macmillan (Morrow)
Woman with a Blue Pencil, by Gordon McAlpine (Seventh Street)
Gun Street Girl, by Adrian McKinty (Seventh Street)
The Daughter, by Jane Shemilt (Morrow)

Best Fact Crime:
Operation Nemesis: The Assassination Plot that Avenged the Armenian Genocide, by Eric Bogosian (Little, Brown)
Where the Bodies Were Buried: Whitey Bulger and the World that Made Him, by T.J. English (Morrow)
Whipping Boy: The Forty-Year Search for My Twelve-Year-Old Bully, by Allen Kurzweil (Harper)
Forensics: What Bugs, Burns, Prints, DNA and More Tell Us About Crime, by Val McDermid (Grove Press)
American Pain: How a Young Felon and His Ring of Doctors Unleashed America’s Deadliest Drug Epidemic, by John Temple (Lyons Press)

Best Critical/Biographical:
The Golden Age of Murder, by Martin Edwards (HarperCollins)
The Outsider: My Life in Intrigue, by Frederick Forsyth (Putnam)
Meanwhile There Are Letters: The Correspondence of Eudora Welty and Ross Macdonald, by Suzanne Marrs and Tom Nolan (Arcade)
Goldeneye: Where Bond Was Born: Ian Fleming’s Jamaica, by Matthew Parker (Pegasus)
The Lost Detective: Becoming Dashiell Hammett, by Nathan Ward (Bloomsbury USA)

Best Short Story:
“The Little Men,” by Megan Abbott (Mysterious Bookshop)
“On Borrowed Time,” by Mat Coward (Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine [EQMM], May 2015)
“The Saturday Night Before Easter Sunday,” by Peter Farrelly (in Providence Noir, edited by Ann Hood; Akashic)
“Family Treasures,” by Shirley Jackson (in Let Me Tell You, edited by Laurence Jackson Hyman and Sarah Hyman DeWitt; Random House)
“Obits,” by Stephen King (in Bazaar of Bad Dreams, by
Stephen King; Scribner)
“Every Seven Years,” by Denise Mina (Mysterious Bookshop)

Best Juvenile:
Catch You Later, Traitor, by Avi (Workman)
If You Find This, by Matthew Baker (Little, Brown
Books for Young Readers)
Curiosity House: The Shrunken Head, by Lauren Oliver and H.C. Chester (HarperCollins Children’s Books)
Blackthorn Key, by Kevin Sands (Aladdin)
Footer Davis Probably Is Crazy, by Susan Vaught (Simon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman)

Best Young Adult:
Endangered, by Lamar Giles (HarperTeen)
A Madness So Discreet, by Mindy McGinnis (HarperCollins/
Katherine Tegen)
The Sin Eater’s Daughter, by Melinda Salisbury (Scholastic Press)
The Walls Around Us, by Nova Ren Suma (Workman)
Ask the Dark, by Henry Turner (Clarion)

Best Television Episode Teleplay:
“Episode 7,” Broadchurch, teleplay by Chris Chibnall (BBC America)
“Gently with the Women,” George Gently, teleplay by
Peter Flannery (Acorn TV)
“Elise,” Foyle’s War, teleplay by Anthony Horowitz (Acorn TV)
“Terra Incognita,” Person of Interest, teleplay by Erik Mountain and Melissa Scrivner Love (CBS/Warner Brothers)
“The Beating of Her Wings,” Ripper Street, teleplay by
Richard Warlow (BBC America)

Robert L. Fish Memorial Award:
“Chung Ling Soo’s Greatest Trick,” by Russell W. Johnson
(EQMM, January 2015)

Grand Master:
Walter Mosley

Raven Awards:
Margaret Kinsman and Sisters in Crime

Ellery Queen Award:
Janet Rudolph, founder of Mystery Readers International

The Simon & Schuster/Mary Higgins Clark Award:
A Woman Unknown, by Frances Brody (Minotaur/Thomas Dunne)
The Masque of a Murderer, by Suzanna Calkins (Minotaur)
Night Night, Sleep Tight, by Hallie Ephron (Morrow)
The Child Garden, by Catriona McPherson (Midnight Ink)
Little Pretty Things, by Lori Rader-Day (Seventh Street)

The winners in all categories are set to be declared on April 28 in New York City. Congratulations to all of the nominees!

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