2020 Harper Lee Prize

The winner of the 2020 Harper Lee Prize for Legal Fiction has been announced has been announced.

Victor Methos, author of The Hallows, will receive The University of Alabama School of Law’s 2020 Harper Lee Prize for Legal Fiction during a virtual ceremony.

Methos said he is thrilled to win the award.

It is such a privilege to receive this award. Every criminal lawyer will tell you the same thing: Atticus Finch was our earliest inspiration. I first read ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’ when I was 13, and to this day, when the injustices of our legal system discourage me, it is that book I turn to for inspiritment. To think the committee saw something of it in my own work humbles me, and I will always be grateful.

Methos will be honored with a signed special edition of To Kill a Mockingbird. The 2020 prize will be awarded virtually as part of the Library of Congress’s National Book Festival.

[Thanks to Cora Buhlert for the story.]

More 2020 Crime Fiction
Awards Finalists

The longlists or shortlists for the Harper Lee Prize for Legal Fiction, Glass Key Award and Margery Allingham Short Story Competition have been announced.

 HARPER LEE PRIZE. The finalists for the 2020 Harper Lee Prize for Legal Fiction have been announced by the University of Alabama School of Law. The three books chosen to compete for the prize are:

  • The Satapur Moonstone by Sujata Massey
  • The Hallows by Victor Methos
  • An Equal Justice by Chad Zunker.

The prize, previously authorized by Lee, is given annually to a book-length work of fiction that best illuminates the role of lawyers in society and their power to effect change.

GLASS KEY. The shortlist for the Glass Key 2020 for best Nordic crime novel have been announced.

  • Dødfunden (Found Dead)by Gretelise Holm (Denmark)
  • Den åttonde tärnan (The Eight Bridesmaid) by Eva Frantz (Finland)
  • Svik (Betrayal) by Lilja sigurðardóttir (Iceland)
  • Kniv (Knife) by Jo Nesbø (Norway)
  • Skuggjägaren (Shadow Hunter) by Camilla Grebe (Sweden)

MARGERY ALLINGHAM. Finally, the longlist for the 2020 Margery Allingham Short Story Competition has been announced by the Crime Writers Association of the UK.

  • The Boy from Galway Bay by Sally Bothroyd
  • The Last Letter by Antony M Brown
  • The Nantes Affair by Briony Cameron
  • Prey by Amelia Coulon
  • Voices by Lauren Everdell
  • The Jewish Laundry by Michael Hare
  • One Bright Blue Day in Amsterdam by Jennifer Harvey
  • A Time to Confess by Della Millward
  • Sting in the Tail by Laila Murphy
  • A Death in the Library by Emily Organ
  • F8 by Alexandra Pendjiky
  • Morning Murder by Wendy Swarbrick

[Thanks to Cora Buhlert for the story.]

More 2019 Mystery Awards

Some of the awards we’ve been tracking have reached the stage of picking the winners, while others are just now unfurling longlists and shortlists.

2019 Harper Lee Prize for Legal Fiction

The winner of the 2019 Harper Lee Prize for Legal Fiction, sponsored by the American Bar Association’s ABA Journal, has been announced:

  • The Boat People by Sharon Bala

The prize, established in 2011, is given annually to a book-length work of fiction that “best illuminates the role of lawyers in society and their power to effect change.”

2018 Hammett Prize for Literary Excellence in Crime Writing

The winner of the 2018 Hammett Prize for Literary Excellence in Crime Writing has been announced by North American Branch of the International Association of Crime Writers. The trophy goes to “the book of the year that best represents the conception of literary excellence in crime writing.”

  • WINNING NOVEL Lou Berney, November Road (William Morrow) 

The award will be presented November 1 at Bouchercon.

CWA Dagger Awards Shortlist

British Crime Writers’ Association (CWA) announced the 2019 CWA Dagger Awards Shortlist. The winners will be announced in London, England, on October 24.

Congratulations to Lavie Tidhar’s whose “Bag Man”, in The Outcast Hours anthology, edited by Mahvesh Murad and Jared Shurin, has made the shortlist in the CWA Short Story Dagger Award category.

CWA Gold Dagger:

  • All the Hidden Truths, by Claire Askew (Hodder & Stoughton)
  • The Puppet Show, by M.W. Craven: (Constable)
  • What We Did, by Christobel Kent (Sphere)
  • Unto Us a Son Is Given, by Donna Leon (Heinemann)
  • American by Day, by Derek B Miller (Doubleday)
  • A Station on the Path to Somewhere Better, by Benjamin Wood (Scribner)

CWA John Creasey (New Blood):

  • All the Hidden Truths, by Claire Askew (Hodder & Stoughton)
  • The Boy at the Door, by Alex Dahl (Head of Zeus)
  • Scrublands, by Chris Hammer (Wildfire)
  • Turn a Blind Eye, by Vicky Newham (HQ)
  • Blood & Sugar, by Laura Shepherd-Robinson (Mantle)
  • Overkill, by Vanda Symon (Orenda)

CWA ALCS Gold Dagger for Non-fiction:

  • All That Remains: A Life in Death, by Sue Black (Doubleday)
  • An Unexplained Death: The True Story of a Body at the Belvedere, by Mikita Brottman (Canongate)
  • Murder by the Book: A Sensational Chapter in Victorian Crime, by Claire Harman (Viking)
  • The Feather Thief: Beauty, Obsession, and the Natural History Heist of the Century, by Kirk Wallace Johnson (Hutchinson)
  • The Spy and the Traitor: The Greatest Espionage Story of the Cold War, by Ben Macintyre (Viking)
  • The Five: The Untold Lives of the Women Killed by Jack the Ripper, by Hallie Rubenhold (Doubleday)

CWA Ian Fleming Steel Dagger:

  • Give Me Your Hand, by Megan Abbott (Picador)
  • Safe Houses, by Dan Fesperman (Head of Zeus)
  • Killing Eve: No Tomorrow, by Luke Jennings (John Murray)
  • Lives Laid Away, by Stephen Mack Jones (Soho Crime)
  • To the Lions, by Holly Watt (Bloomsbury)
  • Memo from Turner, by Tim Willocks (Jonathan Cape)

CWA Sapere Books Historical Dagger:

  • The Quaker, by Liam McIlvanney (Harper Fiction)
  • Destroying Angel, by S.G. MacLean: (Quercus)
  • Smoke and Ashes, by Abir Mukherjee (Harvill Secker)
  • The House on Half Moon Street, by Alex Reeve (Raven)
  • Tombland, by C.J. Sansom: (Mantle)
  • Blood & Sugar, by Laura Shepherd-Robinson (Mantle)

CWA International Dagger:

  • A Long Night in Paris, by Dov Alfon; translated by Daniella Zamir (Maclehose Press)
  • Weeping Waters, by Karin Brynard; translated by Maya Fowler and Isobel Dixon (World Noir)
  • The Cold Summer, by Gianrico Carofiglio; translated by Howard Curtis (Bitter Lemon Press)
  • Newcomer, by Keigo Higashino; translated by Giles Murray (Little, Brown)
  • The Root of Evil, by Håkan Nesser; translated by Sarah Death (Mantle)
  • The Forger, by Cay Rademacher; translated by Peter Millar (Arcadia)

CWA Short Story Dagger:

  • “Strangers in a Pub,” by Martin Edwards (from Ten Year Stretch, edited by Martin Edwards and Adrian Muller; No Exit Press)
  • “Death Becomes Her,” by Syd Moore (from The Strange Casebook, by Syd Moore; Point Blank Books)
  • “The Dummies’ Guide to Serial Killing,” by Danuta Reah (from The Dummies’ Guide to Serial Killing and Other Fantastic Female Fables, by Danuta Reah [aka Danuta Kot]; Fantastic)
  • “I Detest Mozart,” by Teresa Solana (from The First Prehistoric Serial Killer and Other Stories, by Teresa Solana; Bitter Lemon Press)
  • “Bag Man,” by Lavie Tidhar (from The Outcast Hours, edited by Mahvesh Murad and Jared Shurin; Solaris)

Dagger in the Library:

  • M.C. Beaton
  • Mark Billingham
  • John Connolly
  • Kate Ellis
  • C.J. Sansom
  • Cath Staincliffe

Debut Dagger
(for the opening of a crime novel by an uncontracted writer):

  • Wake, by Shelley Burr
  • The Mourning Light, by Jerry Krause
  • Hardways, by Catherine Hendricks
  • The Firefly, by David Smith
  • A Thin Sharp Blade, by Fran Smith

Diamond Dagger Recipient

  • Robert Goddard

2019 Eleanor Taylor Bland Crime Fiction Writers of Color Award

Sisters in Crime (SinC) announced the winner of the 2019 Eleanor Taylor Bland Crime Fiction Writers of Color Award

  • Jessica Martinez of Orcutt, CA,

The award, which honors the memory of pioneering African-American crime fiction author Eleanor Taylor Bland with a $2,000 grant to an emerging writer of color, was created in 2014 to support SinC’s vision statement that the organization should serve as the voice for excellence and diversity in crime writing.

2019 Ned Kelly Award Longlists

The Australian Crime Writers Association announced the longlists for the 2019 Ned Kelly Awards. The complete lists are at the link.

2019 Ngaio Marsh Award Nominees

The 2019 Ngaio Marsh Award Nominees in all three categories are listed at the link (we previously posted the Best Novel longlist here.)

Even More Crime Fiction Awards

The winner of the Mystery Writers Whodunit Writing Competition, and longlists or shortlists for the Shamus Awards, Ngaio Marsh Awards, Killer Nashville Claymore Awards, and the Harper Lee Prize for Legal Fiction have been announced.


Mystery Fest Key West has announced the winner in the 2019 Mystery Writers Whodunit Writing Competition:

  • First Place Winner: “The Strange Disappearance of Rose Stone”  byJ.E. Irvin of Springboro, Ohio. (This is the second time in five years that Irvin has taken top honors in the blind-judged competition.)
  • Second Place: “Dog-Eared for Death,” by Bev Thompson of New York, NY
  • Third Place: “Where There’s Smoke” by Paul Sinor of Barnesville, GA


The Private Eye Writers of America have announced the finalists for the 2019 Shamus Awards


  • Wrong Light by Matt Coyle (Oceanview Publishing)
  • What You Want to See by Kristen Lepionka (Minotaur Books)
  • The Widows of Malabar Hill by Sujata Massey (Soho Crime)
  • Baby’s First Felony by John Straley (Soho Crime)
  • Cut You Down by Sam Wiebe (Quercus)


  • The Best Bad Things by Katrina Carrasco (MCD Farrar, Straus, Giroux)
  • Broken Places by Tracy Clark (Kensington)
  • Last Looks by Howard Michael Gould (Dutton)
  • What Doesn’t Kill You by Aimee Hix (Midnight Ink)
  • Only to Sleep by Lawrence Osborne (Hogarth)


  • She Talks to Angels by James D. F. Hannah (Hannah)
  • No Quarter by John Jantunen (ECW Press)
  • Shark Bait by Paul Kemprecos (Suspense Publishing)
  • Second Story Man by Charles Salzberg (Down & Out Books)
  • The Questionable Behavior of Dahlia Moss by Max Wirestone (Redhook Books)


  • “Fear of the Secular” by Mitch Alderman (AHMM )
  • “Three-Star Sushi” by Barry Lancet (Down & Out Magazine)
  • “The Big Creep” by Elizabeth McKenzie (Santa Cruz Noir)
  • “Game” by Twist Phelan (EQMM)
  • “Chin Yong-Yun Helps a Fooll” by S.J. Rozan (EQMM)


The longlist for the 2019 Ngaio Marsh Awards for the best New Zealand crime novel has been announced.

  • NO ONE CAN HEAR YOU by Nikki Crutchley (Oak House Press)
  • CASSIE CLARK: OUTLAW by Brian Falkner (OneTree House)
  • THIS MORTAL BOY by Fiona Kidman (Penguin)
  • MONEY IN THE MORGUE by Ngaio Marsh & Stella Duffy (HarperCollins)
  • THE QUAKER by Liam McIlvanney (HarperCollins)
  • CALL ME EVIE by JP Pomare (Hachette)
  • THE STAKES by Ben Sanders (Allen & Unwin)
  • MAKE A HARD FIST by Tina Shaw (OneTree House)
  • THE VANISHING ACT by Jen Shieff (Mary Egan Publishing)
  • RAIN FALL by Ella West (Allen & Unwin)


The finalists for the 2019 Killer Nashville Claymore Awards have been announced:


The American Bar Association has announced the finalists for the 2019 Harper Lee Prize for Legal Fiction  and you can actually vote for your favourite at the site.

  • The Boat People, by Sharon Bala
  • Class Action, by Steven B. Frank
  • The Widows of Malabar Hill, by Sujata Massey

[Thanks to Cora Buhlert for the story.]