Recently, the Independent Mystery Booksellers Association voted on which books they most enjoyed selling. This award, among other mystery writers awards, truly reflects what most bookmen and probably customers find appealing, not necessarily the best written titles–although usually, the two are one. Mystery bookstore workers are passionate about their opinions, and strive to find the best of the best to turn on to their customers. When I worked in crime fiction bookstores, I felt a responsibility to make sure those titles I suggested fit the customer’s taste, but were also extremely well written. This year’s nominees are
When Elves Attack, by Tim Dorsey
Wicked Autumn, by G. M. Malliet
Tag Man, by Archer Mayor
A Trick of the Light, by Louise Penny
Ghost Hero, by S. J. Rozan
Tim Dorsey writes crime novels as if on crack–no, wait, that doesn’t sound right–what I mean is, the pace of his writing is so fast and electric, you’d think he was on crack. Still not right. Let’s just say that his crazy characters may actually be on crack in his books, you just never know, lol. Serge, probably a sociopath, and his sidekick, Colman celebrate Christmas in the Sunshine State in their own unique way. If you’ve never experienced a Tim Dorsey novel–grab one now, they go fast.
G. M. Malliet won the highly competitive grant from Malice Domestic for her first novel. The book nominated here is the first in a new series. Her’s what she has to say about herself :
I am currently writing a new mystery series for Thomas Dunne/Minotaur Books. The first book in the series is Wicked Autumn and it will launch September 13, 2011. It features Max Tudor, former MI5 agent turned Anglican priest.
My books are affectionate send-ups of the traditional British mystery. Two of my previous books, Death and the Lit Chick (2009) and Death of a Cozy Writer (2008), were Anthony Award nominees. Death of a Cozy Writer also won an Agatha Award for Best First Novel, having first been completed with the aid of the Malice Domestic Grant. Kirkus Reviews named it one of the best books of 2008.
Archer Mayor is a seasoned professional who has 22 books under his belt featuring Joe Gunner. Here’s what his website says:
“For years, Archer has integrated actual police methodology with intricately detailed plot lines into novels that The New York Times has called “dazzling,” and Booklist has said are “among the best cop stories being written today.” Whereas many writers base their books on only interviews and scholarly research, Mayor’s novels are based on actual experience in the field. The result adds a depth, detail and veracity to his characters and their tribulations that has led The New York Times to call him “the boss man on procedures,” and the Arizona Daily Star to write, “Few deliver such well-rounded novels of such consistent high quality.”