The shortlists for the LA Times Book Prizes were announced last week, including the titles for Best Mystery/Thriller: Bill Beverly, Dodgers; Graeme Macrae Burnet, His Bloody Project: Documents Relating to the Case of Roderick Macrae; Emma Cline, The Girls; Ian McGuire, The North Water; and Thomas Mullen, Darktown.
The finalists were also announced for the Barry Awards, handed out annually since 1997 by Deadly Pleasures magazine in memory of Barry Gardner, "arguably the best fan reviewer ever." The list of this year's honorees for Best Novel, Best First Novel, Best Paperback Original, and Best Thriller (with winners announced Thursday, October 12, during Bouchercon, in Toronto), can be read here (HT to the Gumshoe site).
Book publisher Virago and award-winning digital platform for women are teaming up to sponsor the Virago/The Pool New Crime Writer Award, a competition to find a superlative new female crime writer for Virago. Organizers are seeking "a suspenseful, intelligent, original crime or thriller novel, and interested authors can submit a 5,000-word sample plus a 500-word synopsis. Entires will be judged by novelist Erin Kelly, literary agent Jo Unwin, journalist Coco Khan, Scott Free Development Executive Emily Iredale, Sam Baker and Sarah Savitt. Entries must be submitted by 21 May 2017, with the winner announced in September 2017. The prize is an opportunity to have a book published by Virago, an imprint of Little, Brown Book Group Limited with an advance of £7,500 (c. $9300 U.S.)
Chapter proposals are invited for an edited collection Agatha Christie Goes to War, which will explore and evaluate the role of war in Agatha Christie’s life and writing. The editors invite 300-500 word abstracts for contributions of 6000-8000 words that take a global and in-depth approach to wars and their traces in Christie’s work. For more details, check out this blog post from Shots Magazine.
Shots' Ayo Onatade also reported that the peer-reviewed journal Linguæ& has also put out a call for scholarly papers on the subject of noir: noir as genre, sub- (or sur-) genre, or stylistic mode; about noir writers and film directors of the past and the present; about the new directions of crime fiction(s) regarding LGBT; about the ways noir has (or has not) interfaced with chaos theory, complexity, and fractal geometry; about the connections between noir and politics; about the representation(s) of evil in contemporary literature and the media; and about noir and the American Canon.
The original typescript for Mickey Spillane’s I, the Jury is a headliner at the Heritage Auctions’ 2017 Rare Books Auction March 8 in New York. The manuscript, which carries a pre-auction estimate of $50,000, is Spillane’s copy with pencil marks and editing notations throughout in graphite and red pencil. Among the other pieces in the collection of items relating to the 20th-century American novelist and actor that are up for auction include Spillane's Royal manual typewriter and a group of Spillane’s World War II relics from his time as a fighter pilot.
Stephen Fry has recorded the complete collection of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes books to mark the 130th anniversary of the celebrated detective’s first appearance in print. All four novels and 56 short stories created by the Edinburgh-born author have been turned into new audio books, with the actor and comedian also creating his own introductions for each book in the new series. Among his many other roles, Fry played the brother of Sherlock Holmes in the Guy Ritchie film A Game of Shadows.
Can a doll be a spy? As the New York Times reports, a blonde, bright-eyed doll that chatters about horses and hobbies and plays games could also be eavesdropping on your child.
Mystery Readers Journal: Small Town Cops II (Volume 32:4) is now available. In addition to the online articles "The Joy of Writing the Small Town Cop," by Vicki Delany, and "Small Town Crimes; Small Town Cops" by D.P. Lyle, the print issue includes two dozen additional "Author! Author!" essays as well as reviews.
This week's featured crime poem at the 5-2 is "The Last Battle" by Karen Petersen.
In the Q&A roundup, The Mystery People welcomed Kathleen Kent, who ordinarily writes historical fiction but has turned to crime novels with The Dime, where she introduces Betty Rhyzyk, a tall, red-headed, lesbian cop from Brooklyn whose first big case after transferring to Dallas gets her neck deep in drugs, cartels, and murder; over at the Writers Who Kill blog, E. B. Davis interviewed Agatha Nominee Cynthia Kuhn about her first novel, The Semester Of Our Discontent; Crime Fiction lover spoke with comic book writer and editor Pat Mills about the release of his first crime novel, Serial Killer; and the Dark Phantom blog chatted with author Tom Carter about his latest, Nashville: Music & Murder.