Reviews

‘I opened this book with high expectations. They have been admirably fulfilled.  Here we have a stand alone thriller about two lonely people who pursue a relationship of monthly weekends together in remote spots.  Suddenly one of these two fails to get to the rendezvous-vous and the other realises how very limited her knowledge of her  companion is . . . Gradually the reader pieces together some of the facts as an atmosphere of rising tension envelops everything. The intelligent way Jay, Lisa and others plan their actions is enjoyable and the suspense of the tale is palpable.’

- MYSTERY PEOPLE

Shortlisted for a CWA Dagger!

Posted on Jul 25, 2018 in 'Accounting for Murder', CWA, Mystery Tour | 6 Comments

Mystery Tour CWA AntholgyI was delighted to learn tonight that my story, ‘Accounting for Murder’ in the CWA Anthology, Mystery Tour, has been shortlisted for the CWA Short Story Dagger. Here is the announcement of the Dagger Short Lists in full.

CWA Dagger Shortlists 2018

Latest news

The Crime Writers’ Association announced the shortlists for the prestigious annual Dagger awards for crime writing at an evening reception at Daunt Books, Cheapside, London, on Wednesday 25 May.

The shortlists provide some interesting duplications. Resurrection Bay by Emma Viskic appears on the shortlist for the CWA Gold Dagger and the CWA John Creasey (New Blood) Dagger, while A Necessary Evil by Abir Mukherjee is on the Gold and the CWA Historical shortlists. Bluebird, Bluebird by Attica Locke is on both the Gold and the CWA Ian Fleming Steel Dagger shortlists.  London Rules by Mick Herron also appears on the Gold and the Ian Fleming Steel longlists. Also listed for the Historical Dagger is LC Tyler’s Fire and Stella Duffy’s completion of Ngaio Marsh’s Money in the Morgue.

For the CWA International Dagger, the names of Fred Vargas, Pierre Lemaître and Dolores Redondo appear alongside Henning Mankell.

Lee Child makes an appearance on the CWA Short Story Dagger shortlist, as does Christine Poulson with her story ‘Accounting for Murder’ from the CWA’s own anthology, Mystery Tour. Martin Edwards, Chair of the CWA and president of the Detection Club, features on the Dagger in the Library shortlist. The CWA Gold Dagger for Non-Fiction represents as an eclectic shortlist as ever, with Piu Marie Eatwell’s Black Dahlia Red Rose a notable title with its new take on an infamous murder case.

The CWA Daggers, which are the probably the awards crime authors and publishers alike most wish to win, are awarded every year in 10 categories. The Diamond Dagger, for a career’s outstanding contribution to crime fiction as nominated by CWA members, was announced earlier in the year and will be awarded to best-selling author Michael Connelly at the Dagger Awards event on October.

Here are the CWA Dagger shortlists for 2018.

The CWA Gold Dagger

Author                      Title                          Publisher

Steve Cavanagh                                           The Liar                                                (Orion)

Mick Herron                                       London Rules                                     (John Murray)

Dennis Lehane                                  Since We Fell                                     (Little, Brown)

Attica Locke                                        Bluebird, Bluebird                            (Serpent’s Tail)

Abir Mukherjee                                                A Necessary Evil                               (Harvill Secker)

Emma Viskic                                       Resurrection Bay                              (Pushkin Vertigo)

The CWA Ian Fleming Steel Dagger

Author                      Title                          Publisher

Mick Herron                                       London Rules                                     (John Murray Publishers)

Emily Koch                                          If I Die Before I Wake                     (Harvill Secker)

Attica Locke                                        Bluebird, Bluebird                            (Serpent’s Tail)

Colette McBeth                                An Act of Silence                              (Wildfire)

C J Tudor                                              The Chalk Man                                  (Michael Joseph)

Don Winslow                                     The Force                                            (HarperFiction)

The Steel Dagger sponsor, Ian Fleming Publications Ltd is the Fleming family-owned company that looks after the James Bond literary brand, by promoting and making available all of Ian Fleming’s 007 books across the world.  They also keep the brand alive through the publication of new stories by other authors such as Anthony Horowitz.

The CWA John Creasey (New Blood) Dagger

Author                      Title                          Publisher

William Boyle                                     Gravesend                                          (No Exit Press)

Joe Ide                                                 I.Q.                                                         (Weidenfeld &  Nicolson)

Danya Kukafka                                  Girl in Snow                                        (Picador)

.

Melissa Scrivner Love                     Lola                                                        (Point Blank)

Khurrum Rahman                            East of Hounslow                             (HQ)

Emma Viskic                                       Resurrection Bay                              (Pushkin Vertigo)

The CWA ALCS Gold Dagger for Non-Fiction

Author                      Title                          Publisher

Piu Eatwell                             Black Dahlia Red Rose                       (Coronet)

David Grann                           Killers of the Flower Moon              (Simon & Schuster)

Thomas Harding                    Blood on the Page                             (Heinemann)

Alexandria Mariano-Lesnevich        The Fact of a Body                (Macmillan)

Christian Miller & Ken Armstrong A False Report (Hutchinson)

Laura Thompson                   Rex V Edith Thompson                     (Head of Zeus)

The Dagger’s sponsor The Authors’ Licensing and Collecting Society (ALCS) is a not-for-profit organisation for the benefit of all types of writers. Owned by its members, ALCS collects money due for secondary uses of writers’ work. It is designed to support authors and their creativity, ensure they receive fair payment, and see their rights are respected. It promotes and teaches the principles of copyright and campaigns for a fair deal. Today it represents over 95,000 members, and since 1977 has paid over £450 million to writers.

The CWA Historical Dagger

Author                      Title                          Publisher

Abir Mukherjee                                                A Necessary Evil                               (Harvill Secker)

L. C. Tyler                                                         Fire                                           (Constable)

 

Thomas Mullen                                 Lightning Men                                   (Little, Brown)

Ngaio Marsh & Stella Duffy          Money in the Morgue                    (HarperCollins)

 

Nicola Upson                                     Nine Lessons                                     (Faber & Faber)

Rory Clements                                  Nucleus                                                                (Zaffre Publishing)

The CWA International Dagger

Author, Translator                      Title                          Publisher

Oliver Bottini, tr Jamie Bulloch                    Zen and the Art of Murder           (MacLehose)

Pierre Lemaître tr Frank Wynne                                Three Days and a Life                      (MacLehose)

Henning Mankell, tr Marlaine Delargy     After the Fire                                     (Harvill Secker)

Jon Michelet, tr Don Bartlett                       The Frozen Woman                        (No Exit Press)

Dolores Redondo, tr Nick Caistor & Lorenza Garzía     Offering to the Storm                    (HarperCollins)

Fred Vargas, tr Sian Reynolds                     The Accordionist                              (Harvill Secker)

The CWA Short Story Dagger

‘The Last Siege of Bothwell Castle’ by Chris Brookmyre

Bloody Scotland (Historic Environment Scotland)

 

‘Second Son’ by Lee Child

No Middle Name: The Complete Collected Jack Reacher Stories (Bantam Press)

 

‘Smoking Kills’ by Erin Kelly

“The Body” Killer Women Crime Club Anthology 2, Edited by Susan Opie (Killer Women Ltd)

‘Nemo Me Impune Lacessit’ by Denise Mina

Bloody Scotland (Historic Environment Scotland)

‘Accounting for Murder’ by Christine Poulson

Mystery Tour: CWA Anthology of Short Stories, Edited by Martin Edwards

(Orenda Books)

The CWA Dagger in the Library

 

Nominated by libraries.

Martin Edwards

Nicci French

Edward Marston

Peter May

Rebecca Tope

Simon Kernick

The CWA Debut Dagger

 

For the opening of a crime novel from a writer without a traditional publishing contract.

The Eternal Life of Ezra Ben Simeon by Bill Crotty

The Last Googling of Beth Bailly by Luke Melia

Riverine Blood by Joseph James

Original Sins by Linda McLaughlin

Trust Me, I’m Dead by Sherryl Clark

The winners of the CWA Daggers will be announced at the Dagger Awards dinner in London on 25 October, for which tickets are now available. Visit www.thecwa.co.uk for more information or email admin@thecwa.co.uk .

Note

The Crime Writers Association was established in 1953 by crime writer John Creasey. The Daggers began with what was originally known as the Crossed Red Herring Award in 1955 and have grown from there, attracting sponsors such as Ian Fleming Publications and ALCS. The 10 Daggers are awarded every year. Except for the Diamond Dagger, Debut Dagger and the Dagger in the Library, authors’ books are nominated by their publishers.

The Debut Dagger attracts hundreds of entrants worldwide from would-be crime writers.

My best ever buy in an Oxfam shop

Posted on Jul 7, 2018 in Michael Gilbert, Oxfam bookshops | 8 Comments

It’s forty years since I bought the first of many books in an Oxfam shop. I know that because I have the book open beside me and the date is written inside: ‘July 1978’ along with the place: ‘Birmingham.’ It was a new book, The Oxfam Vegetable Cookbook by Rose Elliot, and it cost 75 pence. Did Oxfam sell second-hand books then? I was a young postgraduate, living alone for the first time in a bed-sit in Moseley, a leafy suburb close to the University, and learning to cook for myself. I certainly got my money’s worth from that book. It’s been worked hard and is corrugated from cooking stains and water marks. There is a recipe for carrot and lentil soup that I still use.

Over the years how many books have I bought from Oxfam bookshops? Hundreds, certainly, more likely thousands, and I’ve donated just as many. I love the idea of sending books back out into world for others to enjoy with the knowledge that they are doing good at the same time. The one in Cambridge, where I taught at Homerton College in the 1990s, was a particular favourite. Academics are great readers of crime fiction and I used to snap up US editions left by visiting scholars.

There is nothing like the frisson of entering a Oxfam shop, not knowing if you’ll find something out of print by a favourite writer or happen upon a wonderful writer who is new to you. My best buy ever was The Man Who Hated Banks and Other Mysteries by Michael Gilbert, discovered in the Sheffield Broomhill branch. It was difficult to get hold of at the time and though it set me back £12, it was worth every penny. Looking on-line I see that there are now copies available from the US for around the same price at the click of a mouse, but where is the fun in that?

This year is the 50th anniversary of the Matlock Oxfam shop and this was written to be displayed there. Perhaps I should add that I do buy new copies of books by my favourite writers, but this is a great way of sampling writers first.