Theakston Crime Novel of the Year Shortlist Announced

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Theakston Crime Novel of the Year Shortlist Announced main

by Sarah Morgan

What do Belinda Bauer’s Snap, Steve Cavanagh’s Thirteen, Mick Herron’s London Rules, Val McDermid’s Broken Ground, Liam McIlvanney’s The Quaker and East of Hounslow by Khurrum Rahman have in common? They’ve all made it onto the shortlist for this year’s coveted Theakston Crime Novel of the Year, of course.

This will be the 15th running of the competition, and the standard just gets higher and higher – whittling down the original list of 18 to just six won’t have been easy.

The prize was created to celebrate the very best in crime fiction and is open to UK and Irish crime authors whose books were published in paperback from May 1, 2018 to April 30, 2019.

Although the shortlist was selected by fellow authors, agents, reviewers and editors, the winner is decided by both a panel of experts and a public vote. The poll opens for a fortnight from July 1 at theakstons.co.uk.

Theakston Crime Novel of the Year Shortlist Announced ian rankin

Authors Ian Rankin and Mark Billingham at 2018’s Crime Festival

“Simply outstanding”

Executive director of T&R Theakston, Simon Theakston, said: “All shortlisted authors are deserving of the title, but there’s only one Novel of the Year. The public vote will be invaluable, readers have real power, so I’d encourage everyone to make their voice heard – it’s free and simple to vote online. It will be fascinating to see which of these remarkable titles prevails, all are simply outstanding.”

Last year, there were some rumblings about the nominees among several of the attendees, who felt that the nominees were getting repetitive and that the list should feature some new blood – hopefully they were appeased by the fact it was won by first-timer Stav Sherez for his novel The Intrusions.

Veterans feature again this time; Herron and McDermid were both in the running in 2018 (McDermid, one of the festival’s co-founders, won in 2006), while Bauer won in 2014 for Rubbernecker.

But many are tipping the prodigiously talented Khurrum to triumph, having already appeared on the shortlist for the CWA John Creasey Debut Dagger Award 2018.

The winner will receive £3,000 and a handmade, engraved beer barrel courtesy of Theakston Old Peculier, with the announcement coming on the opening night of the Theakston Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival, held at Harrogate’s Old Swan Hotel, on July 18.

The awards ceremony is hosted by Mark Lawson and will also reveal the recipient of the 2019 Outstanding Contribution to Crime Fiction Award, which has previously been won by such legends as Colin Dexter, PD James, Ruth Rendell and Lee Child.

Top image: Mike Whorley

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