Monday, February 24, 2020

A Dagger Directed at Edwards

Congratulations to author, critic, and genre historian Martin Edwards, who has been named as this year’s recipient of the Diamond Dagger—“the highest honour in British crime writing”—presented by the Crime Writers’ Association.

In its press release about this award, the CWA explains that “Alongside his career as a prolific novelist, Martin is a renowned editor, reviewer, columnist and versatile writer of non-fiction, and is a leading authority on crime fiction. He has also enjoyed a separate career as a solicitor, and is recognised for his expertise in employment and equal opportunities law. … Originally known for his Harry Devlin and the Lake District Mysteries series, Martin is now making waves with his 1930s-set thrillers. His latest novel Gallows Court revived the Golden Age of crime fiction with a unique twist, featuring the character Rachel Savernake, and was last year nominated for the CWA Historical Dagger and shortlisted for the eDunnit award. The sequel, Mortmain Hall, is published in April by Head of Zeus.

“In 2015, Martin followed in the footsteps of Agatha Christie, G.K. Chesterton, and Dorothy L. Sayers by being elected President of the Detection Club, the world’s oldest social network of crime writers. The Club will celebrate its 90th birthday this year by publishing Howdunit (HarperCollins), edited by Martin; a masterclass of crime writing by leading exponents of the genre. He is consultant to the British Library’s bestselling Crime Classics series, and wrote the award-winning companion volume, The Story of Classic Crime in 100 Books. He is also archivist of the Detection Club and the CWA and a former Chair of the CWA. Author of over sixty short stories, since 1996 he has been the editor of the CWA’s annual anthology.”

That release concludes: “The CWA Diamond Dagger is selected from nominations provided by CWA members. Nominees have to meet two essential criteria: first, their careers must be marked by sustained excellence, and second, they must have made a significant contribution to crime writing published in the English language.” Previous Diamond Dagger honorees include Ruth Rendell, Andrew Taylor, Lee Child, Ann Cleeves, Ian Rankin, P.D. James, John Harvey, Reginald Hill, Lindsey Davis, Peter Lovesey, and John Le Carré. The 2019 prize went to Robert Goddard.

Edwards will receive his coveted commendation during the CWA’s annual Dagger awards ceremony in October.

READ MORE:The Diamond Dagger,” by Martin Edwards (‘Do You Write Under Your Own Name?’).

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