We’ve got a bundle of five fantastic free crime novels from Myrmidon Books to give away, and to be with a chance of winning them all you need to do is tell us about your favourite crime fiction novel of the past 12 months.
You see, the Crime Writers Association and ITV3 have just handed out their Crime Thriller Awards, and it got us thinking. For instance, there weren’t that many female authors on the shortlists, and no women won an award, despite there being many fantastic female crime writers. Certainly, a great number wonderful books were considered for the Daggers, but not many of our particular favourites made the shortlists either. Awards can be a pretty subjective area, and some say being shortlisted, or winning, can help drive the popularity of a book. Or is it the other way round? We want crime fiction lovers like you to have their voices heard.
Tell us about your favourite book
So, please tell us the title (and author) of your favourite crime novel of the past year by commenting below. And to add to the fun, one lucky person who posts their choice will win a bundle of five free crime novels from Myrmidon Books. The independent publisher has just celebrated its fifth birthday so what could be more fitting than five books?
Up for grabs are five fantastic, juicy crime fiction novels by authors who all broach the genre with their own unique take on it. The loot our lucky winner will nab includes:
The Painted Messiah by Craig Smith
The Spy Who Came for Christmas by David Morrell
Bulletproof Suzy by Ian Brotherhood
The Stone Gallows by C David Ingram
Thirteen by Sebastian Beaumont
More about the draw
This isn’t a vote or an empirical process aiming to choose the best book of the year. We just want to know what you think – and perhaps it will throw up some interesting debate. As long as you don’t work for Crime Fiction Lover or Myrmidon, you’ll be in with a chance of winning. (No doubt our writers and Myrmidon staff and authors will be commenting, but they won’t go into the draw.) The winner will be chosen randomly shortly after 10pm UK time on Sunday 16 October, when the draw closes. There’s no cash alternative to the prize, and no correspondence will be entered into.
All that remains is for you to tell us about your favourite crime book of the past 12 months by commenting below:
OK, I am on the CFL team and I can’t win, but I’ll kick things off anyway. My top choice is Dust Devils by Roger Smith. Very disturbing, different to the norm, well written and a great storyline. All set in South Africa.
Why, Ian Rankin’s The Impossible Dead, of course! 🙂
The Fifth Witness by Michael Connelly was really good.
I love this kind of thing. Interested to hear peoples choices!
My pick would be Black Flowers by Steve Mosby. A fantastic novel!
Closely followed by The Donor by Helen Fitzgerald…
“Crimes in Southern Indiana” by Frank Bill.
George Pelecanos – The Cut. Some say it’s a return to form for the author. I say he never left – but just gets better with each new title.
Plenty of pace and punch within – but it also takes time to pause and ponder (cue the author’s love for his city, music, cars and people). I’m still thinking about this book a month later. A good sign.
The Devil All The Time by Donald Ray Pollock.
Linwood Barclay: The Accident
My favourite of last year was Karen Rose – Have You Seen Her.
Although at times these novels can be formulaic and predictable, the author somehow manages to make that a good thing, I’ve picked this book in particular as the back story was something that really struck a chord with me.
I work for Myrmidon Books so I might be a tiny bit biased but we were all thrilled when Craig Smith was recognised for his latest novel Cold Rain which was shortlisted for Best Thriller of the Year 2011 at the CWA Crime Fiction Awards. I read it a while ago now and it is a little weird when you work for a publisher planning to publish something because you feel it is a fantastic story, but then the outside world recognising that too.
I read Australian author Garry Disher’s ‘Wyatt’; it’s like (and clearly is a tribute to) US writer Donald E.Westlake’s ‘Richard Stark’/ ‘Parker’ novels, but set in contemporary Melbourne – fast, concise writing, dark and sometimes funny. Not sure why I’d never heard of him before, perhaps unpublished in the UK, but he should be.
Seems odd to say that a book that deals with paedophilia is my favourite crime book of the last year but Sugar & Spice, Saffina Desforges is very well written, scared me and challenged my views at the same time. (Only available in ebook at the moment)
I think if a book disturbs you or challenges you, your ideas, preconceptions, politics or even taste then that can be a good thing. But only if it’s done well and isn’t gratuitous.
I just read The Winter of Frankie Machine (by Don Winslow, whose books are all good), and Frankie is the perfect hit man protagonist. The plot keeps coiling back on itself as Frankie tries to learn who’s trying to kill him, so long after he’s left the life.
And close to the end, even though this is not a new book, there’s a rant that would suit today’s Occupy Wall Street.
Julia Crounch’s Cuckoo is the crime book of this year for me. Great twist and great ending. Best crime book I’ve read this year is Dennis Lehane’s Mystic River. Having seen DL in Harrogate, I’m quickly catching up on what I have been missing.
Before I go to sleep by S.J. Watson. Brilliant debut novel,so glad it won at the Crime thriller awards on Friday.
Snowdrops by A. D. Miller
From overseas, Jussi Adler-Olsen’s “Mercy”… from the UK, “The Drop” by Howard Linskey.
Would have to dole out a shedload of honourable mentions to truly do the year’s crop justice, but definitely agree with Pelecanos’ “The Cut,” and the CWA’s fine choice for the Ian Fleming Dagger, “The Lock Artist” by Steve Hamilton.
My favorite crime novel of the year would have to be Fun and Games by Duane Swierczynski. The pace, the wild characters and the out there but still working plot were a joy to read.
I’d have to agree with a previous comment about Craig Smith’s Cold Rain being the best I’ve came across the past year. The idea of one investigating a crime one didn’t commit can already be considered cliched, but Craig Smith brought to an entire different level. Compelling.
Can’t believe no one’s mentioned this yet, but Denise Mina’s “The End of the Wasp Season” was fantastic. She probably provides the best introspective into each of her characters, not just the protagonist. They are all so well-rounded and fleshed out that they feel vividly real.
It’s not a new release, but “The Ice Princess” by Camilla Lackberg is probably one of my favourite reads this year. Lackberg is very good at drawing you into a story and keeping you hooked.
“Far South” is probably my favourite new release this year as I really enjoyed the way I was drawn into the story. The use of computer links was a nice touch as it gave an added sense of realism.
I’m not eligible to win because I’m part of the team, so I will make my own rules and go with my top 5 (in alphabetical order) :
Lawrence Block’s A Drop of the Hard Stuff
Mark Billingham’s Bloodline
Michael Connelly’s The Fifth Witness (haven’t read The Drop, yet)
Ed Lynskey’s Lake Charles
George Pelecanos’s The Cut (read it twice)
Wrote too fast, alphabetical order means Billingham before Block. Sorry.
I’ve read a lot of good ones lately, but I think my favorite new books are THE CUT by George Pelecanos and FUN & GAMES by Duane Swierczynski.
Wow – that’s a tough question!
I’ve just started Craig Smith’s Cold Rain, and I’m really enjoying it so far.
I also enjoyed Mark Billingham’s work this year.
The Cut seems to be getting a lot of mentions, and it and Before I go to Sleep are next on my reading list…
But given my review, it has to be The Impossible Dead. Brilliant stuff from Rankin, and out to buy on Thursday October 13!
‘The Retribution’ by Val McDermid.
A fantastic read for those advocates of Hill and Jordan. The chilling Jacko Vance is back and out for revenge. I read this on holiday and read it through the night as I couldn’t put it down.
Chilling, frightening, gripping, exciting. It has everything.
It’s tricky for me as the majority of the books I’ve read in the past year are all older books such as the Wallander series, Robert B Parker books and the Sue Grafton “Alphabet” collection. The most recent one was The Leopard by Jo Nesbo. Superb writing and fantastic plotline.
I loved Kate Atkinson’s STARTED EARLY, TOOK MY DOG (2011) for her trademark complexity & the quality of her prose, and Dennis Lehane’s MIDNIGHT MILE (2010) for its lean style & the return of Kenzie & Gennaro, the best sleuthing couple since Nick & Nora Charles.
GALVESTON BY NIC PIZZOLATTO
in no particular order books i have enjoyed includeThe Cut by George Pelecanos, The Hound of The D’Urbervilles by Kim Newman, The Scar-Crow Men by Mark Chadbourn, The Somme Stations by Andrew Martin and Southern Gods by John Horner Jacobs. Not all are straight up crime but have crime elements
My favourite crime I have read so far this year has been The Death Instinct by Jed Rubenfeld. Gripping, informative and intelligent, I loved it!
Has to be Beautiful, Naked & Dead by Josh Stallings. This book exploded in front of my eyes and I just couldn’t put it down….
For me it has to be The Cut by George Pelecanos. As ever he knocks it out of the park (way out) with a brilliant novel featuring a new character. All the usual themes and motifs are present and correct. He really does just get better, and this book is going to be hard to beat this or any year.
For me it has to be Julie Morrigan’s Convictions. This show how a police procedural should be written. A great read.
Great choice. If I could do a top 5, it’d be
Black Flowers – Steve Mosby
The Donor – Helen Fitzgerald
Broken Dreams – Nick Quantrill
The Office of Lost and Found – Vincent Holland-Keen
Convictions – Julie Morrigan.
But I can’t win anyway, so I do get a Top 5!
My first choice would be THE CYPRESS HOUSE by Michael Koryta, followed closely by John Connolly’s THE BURNING SOUL and Megan Abbott’s THE END OF EVERYTHING.
My favourite book this year is POST MORTUARY by Patricia Cornwell.she brings forensic science into a technological paradise .. For example virtual autopsy’s.I look forward to her new book RED MIST out in November .
Thanks for posting Denise. Thanks to everyone who’s shared their thoughts, in fact. Couple more days and we’ll choose the winner of the book bundle!
My crime thrillers, DIRTY WORK & THRIFT STORE BOUNTY HUNTERS are pretty awesome, and have solid chunks of action and funny! But don’t take my word for it…
My favourite book of the year so far has to be Before I go to Sleep by S.J. Watson. Not only was it a good and thrilling story, it was also highly original and unlike anything I had read before. I always admire originality in my reads.
Here’s my top five, all short story collections bitches!
GONE BAD Julie Morrigan
DIRTY OLD TOWN Nigel Bird
NOWHERE TO GO Iain Rowan
CRIME FACTORY: THE FIRST SHIFT
BRIT GRIT Paul D. Brazill
Loved Port Mortuary by Patricia Cornwell. Have loved this series from the outset. As well as being a renowned scientist in her field, Cornwell also has a better handle than most on emerging technologies!Even this far into the series Cornwell still manages to add dimension to her characters and the betrayal of Scarpetta by someone who was at one time a trusted employee was an unusual twist.
My favourite was Love You More by Lisa Gardner. Actually, all of her books have a special place on my shelf.
My favourite crime novel so far this year was The Attenbury Emeralds by Jill Paton Walsh. Lovely to be reunited with old literary friends.
Was doing catch up this year and finally read all of Kate Atkinson’s Jackson Brodie novels. They may not be ‘traditional’ crime novels but all were outstanding. I would have to plump for When Will There Be Good News as my favourite. Forget the TV series which may have worked as a programme but was a very unsatisfactory adaptation of complex, clever and witty novels.
I can’t believe I’ve missed the competition, all these comments are on here and Into the darkest corner Elizabeth Haynes is not mentioned….it is now
My favorite series of 2012 was the Justice series by M. A. Comley. Loved following DI Lorne Simpkins from Cruel Justice all the way to Ultimate Justice. A female Alex Cross. Not for the squeamish.
Thanks for the suggestions Linda