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Chris Brookmyre wins Theakston Crime Novel of the Year 2017

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Scottish author Chris Brookmyre has been awarded the Theakston Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year Award for 2017 for his book Black Widow.

“I’m really quite taken aback,” said the author. “I’ve been shortlisted three times for this award, always the bridesmaid, today I get to walk up the aisle. A book is not just the work of the author behind it. I’d like to thank my editor, Ed Wood, for his calibre and daring that made a good book greater.”

Black Widow also won the McIlvanney Prize 2016 at Bloody Scotland last year, and features Brookmyre’s series character investigative journalist Jack Parlabane. It involves online abuse, and Parlabane investigates the death of a newly married man whose sister suspects foul play. It was one of our contributor Mal McEwan’s top five books of 2016.

The author was given a cash prize of £3,000 and a hand-engraved oak cask of Theakston’s Old Peculier by beer supremo Simon Theakston. The awards are part of the Crime Writing Festival taking place in Harrogate this weekend.

Also receiving a gong was Jack Reacher creator Lee Child. He won the eighth Outstanding Contribution to Crime Fiction Award, joining an alumni that includes Val McDermid, Sara Paretsky, Lynda La Plante, Ruth Rendell, PD James, Colin Dexter and Reginald Hill.

“It’s an honour – probably undeserved – to be placed in the same category as the previous recipients of this prize. In particular I would like to thank Simon Theakston for his generous and visionary support of the genre,” said Lee Child.

He has previously won the CWA Diamond Dagger, which also rewarded his substantial impact on the genre.

Congratulations to both authors. Brookmyre’s book was chosen from a strong shortlist that included Eva Dolan, Sabine Durrant, Mick Herron, Val McDermid and Susie Steiner.


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