Monday, June 06, 2022

Bullet Points: Revival and Redesign Edition

• After an absence of a year or more, the Dead Good Reader Awards—organized by the British crime-fiction Web site Dead Good—have suddenly returned. Public suggestions of nominees are currently being solicited in six categories:

— The Something in the Air Award for Most Atmospheric Novel
— The Love Is Blind Award for Most Twisted Couple
— The Cold As Ice Award for Most Chilling Read
— The Race-Against-Time Award for Best Action Thriller
— The New Kid on the Block Award for Best New Series
— The Dead Good Recommends Award for Most Recommended Book

“The books with the most nominations,” explains a recent message on the site, “will form the shortlists and go to a public vote, with winners announced at the Theakston Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival in Harrogate this July.” Everyone participating in this nominating process, we’re told, will be “entered into our prize draw for the chance to win £100 worth of thrilling crime books too!”

• Speaking of competitions, the blog In Search of the Classic Mystery Novel has the results of its latest online poll to determine the top Golden Age mystery writers of all time. Rex Stout, Edmund Crispin, Dorothy L Sayers, and Ellery Queen all found places on the list, but the winner is … Well, you’ll just have to click here to find out.

• In Reference to Murder reports that one of Rap Sheet contributor Steven Nester’s favorite novels of 2021 is being adapted for television:
Fox is developing Felonious Monk, a one-hour drama based on William Kotzwinkle’s novel, from writer Michael Brandon Guercio (Treadstone) and Fox Entertainment. Felonious Monk is about a disgraced cop with anger issues-turned-monk who returns to his hometown to take care of his dead uncle’s outstanding business debts. But when he suspects foul play, he’s forced to abandon his serene monastery life in order to solve his uncle’s murder and other homicide cases.
• Happy 18th birthday to Terence Towles Canote’s diverse and ever-interesting blog, A Shroud of Thoughts.

• Meanwhile, UK novelist Christopher Fowler is thinking of giving up his own blog, which has been active since the early 2000s. “Do writer blogs still have any purpose?” he asks. “Are there easier ways of providing readers with information? Let me know what you think.”

• It seems the June 13 release Lawyers, Guns, and Money: Crime Fiction Inspired by the Music of Warren Zevon has undergone an 11th-hour redesign. Art Taylor, who edited the work with Libby Cudmore, says “some concerns about the imagery on the cover” led to said changes. A statement from publisher Down & Out Books reads:
The last two weeks before a book’s release hardly seem the ideal time to radically change that book’s cover, but with the number of mass shootings in the news recently, we and several of our contributors have had mixed feelings about the original cover image for Lawyers, Guns, and Money. Clearly, these stories are crime fiction—violence regularly an integral part of the genre and gun violence specifically central to several plotlines within these very pages—but images often speak louder than words, louder and less clearly, and having a semi-automatic weapon as the key image associated with this anthology felt uncomfortable … but fortunately was not unavoidable. We’re grateful that our cover artist, Zach McCain, had designed two cover treatments for the book and that Down & Out has been able to make a swift change so close to our publication date. Thanks to them, to our contributors, and to our readers for understanding and support here.
Frankly, I think this worked out for the best. The original cover, shown above and on the left, lacks the elbow-jabbing humor (those Zevon-esque spectacles!) that the altered front beside it boasts. I look forward to seeing the completed book.

• Finally, Sisters in Crime Australia has announced that a whopping 166 books are vying to win its 2022 Davitt Awards competition for best crime and mystery works—“far in excess of the record 127 in the running last year and in 2019.” The winners in half a dozen Davitt categories will be declared on Saturday, August 27, during “a gala dinner” held at South Melbourne’s Rising Sun Hotel: Best Adult Novel; Best Young Adult Novel; Best Children’s Novel; Best Non-fiction Book; Best Debut Book (any category); and Readers’ Choice (as voted the 500+ members of Sisters in Crime Australia).

1 comment:

Art Taylor said...

Thanks for sharing the new cover and the information here—and glad you like the new treatment. I'm a big fan myself!