Overnight, the Crime Writers’ Association announced the shortlist for the 2008/2009 Ellis Peters Historical Award (the last remaining shortlist to be announced for their various awards this year). The Ellis Peters Historical Awards was established for the best historical crime novel (set in any period up to 35 years prior to the year in which the award will be made) by an author of any nationality. The award commemorates the life and work of Ellis Peters (Edith Pargeter) (1913-1995), a prolific author perhaps best known as the creator of Brother Cadfael.
I was a bit slow on the uptake on this, as the shortlist wasn't officially announced by the time I went to bed last night (although it had been leaked early on some blogs), and by the time I got in to blog today, some other great bloggers had already covered it. Thanks to Karen Meek at EuroCrime and Graham Beattie at Beattie's Book Blog for the heads-up. I've linked the shortlisted titles to reviews on EuroCrime (where available), for those (like myself), who haven't read all the titles.
The shortlist is as follows:
Rennie Airth, THE DEATH OF WINTER
Philip Kerr, IF THE DEAD RISE NOT
Shona MacLean, THE REDEMPTION OF ALEXANDER SEATON
Mark Mills, THE INTELLIGENCE OFFICERAndrew Williams, THE INTERROGATOR
Laura Wilson, AN EMPTY DEATH
You can read more about the shortlisted winners, and the judge's comments, HERE.
CWA chair Margaret Murphy said: “The Ellis Peters judges have again identified a terrifically strong list for the Historical Award. Each historical period, from the sixteenth century to World War II, is wonderfully evoked by these talented writers.”
It's been quite a month for Philip Kerr, who on 3 September won the world's most lucrative prize in crime fiction, the RBA International Prize for Crime Writing for IF THE DEAD RISE NOT. Kerr's book beat more than 160 others to land the €125,000 (£109,000) prize. The book is the last in his series of "Berlin noir" novels featuring detective Bernie Gunther, and covering a period that includes Hitler's rise to power and postwar Germany's struggle to come to terms with its past. After the announcement, Kerr said he was surprised at the size of the prize: "I recently got a prize in France which was a few bottles of wine."
The winner of the CWA Ellis Peters Historical Award will be announced in the evening of Thursday 29th October at a reception in London.
Thoughts? Have any of you read any of the shortlisted titles? Do you like historical crime fiction?