The Lefty Awards from this year's Left Coast Crime conference were announced and include the Lefty for Best Humorous Mystery Novel: Ellen Byron, Body on the Bayou; the Lefty for Best Historical Mystery Novel (Bruce Alexander Memorial) for books covering events before 1960: Catriona McPherson, The Reek of Red Herrings; the Lefty for Best Debut Mystery Novel: Alexia Gordon, Murder in G Major; and the Lefty for Best Mystery Novel: Louise Penny, A Great Reckoning.
The inaugural Jhalak prize, set up to address UK publishing’s long lack of diversity, has been awarded to Jacob Ross’s crime novel The Bone Readers, topping a varied shortlist to take the £1,000 prize.
Foreword Reviews announced the finalists for their annual INDIES Book of the Year Awards, including those in the Mystery and Thriller categories.
The Independent Book Publishers Association announced finalists for that organization's Benjamin Franklin Awards for literary excellence, including Mystery & Suspense titles.
Ian Rankin announced details of the program for RebusFest, a weekend of literature, music, art and film in Rebus’s hometown of Edinburgh, which takes place from June 30 to July 2, 2017. The three-day festival, curated by Rankin, marks the thirtieth anniversary of John Rebus, one of crime fiction’s greatest and best-loved creations.
Mystery Fest Key West has announced a call for submissions for this year’s Whodunit Mystery Writing Competition. The winner will claim a book-publishing contract with Absolutely Amazing eBooks, free Mystery Fest Key West 2017 registration, airfare, hotel accommodations for two nights, meals, and a Whodunit Award trophy to be presented at the 4th Annual Mystery Fest Key West, set for June 16-18 in Key West, Florida. For more information and deadlines, follow this link.
There is a call for papers for the panel Criminal Heritage: Crime, Fiction, and History to be held September 5 at Leeds Beckett University. This interdisciplinary conference aims to explore, analyse, and debate the relationship between crime, narrative, and history. They invite proposals (of 200 words or less) for 20-minute papers relating to the conference theme. (HT to Shots Magazine)
One bit of sad news to report: Colin Dexter, author of the popular Inspector Morse novels that were later made into a TV series featuring John Thaw as the detective, has died at the age of 86. Several authors paid tribute with remembrances and affection for their late colleague.
Some happy publication news: Down & Out Books, publisher of literary and award-winning crime fiction, is teaming up with author and critic Rick Ollerman to edit and produce an all new quarterly magazine showcasing the best of the short crime fiction market. Debuting in June 2017, Down & Out: The Magazine promises it "will include something for all fans of the genre."
And some not-so-happy publication news: The editors of the small press Blasted Heath, in business since 2011, announced they were shutting down. The press published authors such as Anonymous-9, Ray Banks, Nigel Bird, Gerard Brennan, Douglas Lindsay, and Anthony Neil Smith.
Fans of the Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys might not recognize their latest iteration as a cross-over graphic novel, The Big Lie. When the teenage brothers Frank and Joe Hardy are accused of the murder of their father - a detective in the small resort town of Bayport - they must team up with the femme fatale Nancy Drew to prove their innocence.
Researchers planned to exhume a grave in Leytonstone, East London, hoping to find remains of the final Jack the Ripper victim, Mary Jane Kelly, but they concluded it would be a "Herculean effort" and would cost too much. Lead researcher Dr. Turi King was part of the team that confirmed a skeleton found beneath Leicester car park in 2012 belonged to Richard III.
Book Riot posted a list of "5 Japanese Crime Writers that Should Be On Your Radar."
Every time writers believe the tired and antiquated "literary vs. genre" fiction trope has been laid to rest, it rears its ugly head once more. This time, in was in the form of William O’Rourke, an emeritus professor of English at the University of Notre Dame, who dissed crime fiction in recent remarks and prompted thirteen authors to take him to task for dismissing them and their readers.
Jacob Stone (the pen name chosen by award-winning author Dave Zeltserman for his new Morris Brick series of serial-killer thrillers) took the Page 69 Test to Deranged, the first Morris Black thriller.
This week's featured crime poem at the 5-2 is "The Cursed and Captured Highwayman" by Kelli Simpson.
In the Q&A roundup, British/Canadian writer Peter Robinson stopped by Australia's Daily Review to promote the latest novel in his DCI Banks crime series, When the Music’s Over; and Paul D. Brazill had a flurry of "Short, Sharp Interview" Q&As with Matt Bay (Bay of Martyrs); Paul Heatley (Fat Boys), and Gerald M. O'Connor (The Origins of Benjamin Hackett).