The Crime Writers' Association announced the shortlist for some of this year's Daggers, awards given to celebrate the best in crime and thriller writing.
All shortlisted books had a UK publication date of between June 1st, 2008 and May 31st, 2009. The winners will be announced on July 15th at which time the shortlist for two other categories will be announced.
We confess, though the CWA Daggers are among the most prestigious awards given to authors of mystery and crime fiction, we find the whole process by which the awards are given out unnecessarily confusing.
Several months ago, the Diamond Dagger was awarded to Andrew Taylor for sustained excellence in crime writing. Daggers for International Novels Translated into English, Short Stories, Debut (unpublished) Novels, and the Dagger in the Library (for an author's body of work, which sounds suspiciously similar to the Diamond Dagger) will be given out in July. Then the Gold (Best Novel), New Blood (Best New Novel), and Ian Fleming Steel (Best Thriller) Daggers will be awarded in the fall. In yet another separate presentation, the Ellis Peters Historical Award, with its own separate rules and technically not a Dagger since the winner can be considered for one of its categories, is given out to the best historical crime novel, also in the fall. Finally, there's the Dagger for Non-Fiction, also awarded separately and now awarded biannually.
To make things even more confusing, the awards are periodically renamed to reflect the wishes of corporate sponsor providing the cash prize that accompanies the award.
On our own CWA Dagger Award page, we only list the winners of the Best Novel and Best New Novel Daggers though we have it on our to-do list to go back and try to reconstruct a more complete history of the award.
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