Monday, 25 January 2021

2021 Edgar® Nominees

January 25, 2021, New York, NY - Mystery Writers of America is proud to announce, as we celebrate the 212th anniversary of the birth of Edgar Allan Poe, the nominees for the 2021 Edgar Allan Poe Awards, honouring the best in mystery fiction, non-fiction and television published or produced in 2020. The 75th Annual Edgar® Awards will be celebrated on April 29, 2021. 

Best Novel

Djinn Patrol on the Purple Line by Deepa Anappara (Penguin Random House – Random House)

Before She Was Helen by Caroline B. Cooney (Poisoned Pen Press)

Thursday Murder Club by Richard Osman (Penguin Random House - Pamela Dorman Books)

These Women by Ivy Pochoda (HarperCollins Publishers – Ecco)

The Missing American by Kwei Quartey (Soho Press – Soho Crime)

The Distant Dead by Heather Young (HarperCollins Publishers - William Morrow)

Best First Novel by an American Author

Murder in Old Bombay by Nev March (Minotaur Books)

Please See Us by Caitlin Mullen (Simon & Schuster – Gallery Books)

Catherine House by Elisabeth Thomas (HarperCollins Publishers – William Morrow)

Winter Counts by David Heska Wanbli Weiden (HarperCollins Publishers -Ecco)

Darling Rose Gold by Stephanie Wrobel (Penguin Random House – Berkley)


When No One is Watching by Alyssa Cole (HarperCollins Publishers - William Morrow) 

The Deep, Deep Snow by Brian Freeman (Blackstone Publishing) 

Unspeakable Things by Jess Lourey (Amazon Publishing – Thomas & Mercer) 

The Keeper by Jessica Moor (Penguin Random House - Penguin Books) 

East of Hounslow by Khurrum Rahman (HarperCollins Publishers - Harper 360) 


Blood Runs Coal: The Yablonski Murders and the Battle for the United Mine Workers of America by Mark A. Bradley (W.W. Norton & Company) 

The Third Rainbow Girl: The Long Life of a Double Murder in Appalachia by Emma Copley Eisenberg (Hachette Book Group – Hachette Books) 

Death in Mud Lick: A Coal Country Fight Against the Drug Companies that Delivered the Opioid Epidemic by Eric Eyre (Simon & Schuster - Scribner) 

Yellow Bird: Oil, Murder, and a Woman's Search for Justice in Indian Country by Sierra Crane Murdoch (Penguin Random House – Random House) 

Veritas: A Harvard Professor, a Con Man, and the Gospel of Jesus's Wife by Ariel Sabar (Penguin Random House - Doubleday) 


Howdunit: A Masterclass in Crime Writing by Members of the Detection Club by Martin Edwards (HarperCollins Publishers – Harper360/Collins Crime Club) 

Phantom Lady: Hollywood Producer Joan Harrison, the Forgotten Woman Behind Hitchcock by Christina Lane (Chicago Review Press) 

Ian Rankin: A Companion to the Mystery & Fiction by Erin E. MacDonald (McFarland) Guilt Rules All: Irish Mystery, Detective, and Crime Fiction by Elizabeth Mannion & Brian Cliff (Syracuse University Press) 

This Time Next Year We'll be Laughing by Jacqueline Winspear (Soho Press) 


"The Summer Uncle Cat Came to Stay," by Leslie Elman Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine (Dell Magazines) 

"Dust, Ash, Flight,Addis Ababa Noir by Maaza Mengiste (Akashic Books) 

"Fearless," California Schemin' by Walter Mosley (Wildside Press) 

"Etta at the End of the World," by Joseph S. Walker Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine (Dell Magazines) 

The Twenty-Five Year Engagement,” by James W. Ziskin In League with Sherlock Holmes (Pegasus Books – Pegasus Crime) 


Premeditated Myrtle by Elizabeth C. Bunce (Workman Publishing - Algonquin Young Readers) 

Me and Banksy by Tanya Lloyd Kyi (Penguin Random House Canada - Puffin Canada) From the Desk of Zoe Washington by Janae Marks (HarperCollins Children's Books - Katherine Tegen Books) 

Ikenga by Nnedi Okorafor (Penguin Young Readers – Viking BFYR) 

Nessie Quest by Melissa Savage (Random House Children's Books - Crown BFYR) 

Coop Knows the Scoop by Taryn Souders (Sourcebooks Young Readers) 


The Companion by Katie Alender (Penguin Young Readers – G.P. Putnam’s Sons BFYR) 

The Inheritance Games by Jennifer Lynn Barnes (Hachette Book Group – Little, Brown BFYR) 

They Went Left by Monica Hesse (Hachette Book Group – Little, Brown BFYR) 

Silence of Bones by June Hur (Macmillan Children’s Books – Feiwel & Friends) 

The Cousins by Karen M. McManus (Penguin Random House – Delacorte Press) 


Episode 1, The Stranger” – Harlan Coben’s The Stranger, Written by Danny Brocklehurst (Netflix) 

Episode 1, Open Water” – The Sounds, Written by Sarah-Kate Lynch (Acorn TV) 

Episode 1, Photochemistry” – Dead Still, Written by John Morton (Acorn TV) 

Episode 1” – Des, Written by Luke Neal (Sundance Now) 

What I Know” – The Boys, Written by Rebecca Sonnenshine, based on the comic by Garth Ennis and Darick Robertson (Amazon) 


"The Bite,” Tampa Bay Noir by Collette Bancroft (Akashic Books) 



Death of an American Beauty by Mariah Fredericks (Minotaur Books) 

The Cabinets of Barnaby Mayne by Elsa Hart (Minotaur Books) 

The Lucky One by Lori Rader-Day (HarperCollins Publishers – William Morrow) 

The First to Lie by Hank Phillippi Ryan (Forge Books) 

Cold Wind by Paige Shelton (Minotaur Books) 


The Burn by Kathleen Kent (Hachette Book Group – Mulholland Books) 

Riviera Gold by Laurie R. King (Penguin Random House – Ballantine Books) 

Vera Kelly is Not a Mystery by Rosalie Knecht (Tin House Books) 

Dead Land by Sara Paretsky (HarperCollins Publishers – William Morrow) 

The Sleeping Nymph by Ilaria Tuti (Soho Press – Soho Crime) 

Turn to Stone by James W. Ziskin (Start Publishing – Seventh Street Books) 



Jeffrey Deaver 

Charlaine Harris 


Malice Domestic 


Reagan Arthur, Publisher – Alfred A. Knopf 

We are pleased to announce that this year’s recipient of the Ellery Queen award is Reagan Arthur. She is currently the publisher at Alfred A. Knopf, after a lengthy career in editorial and editorial development. Amongst the authors she has worked with over the years include names like Michael Connelly and Kate Atkinson, and also the enormously successful Catch and Kill by Ronan Farrow. When informed of her selection as recipient of the Ellery Queen Award, Ms. Arthur commented, "Crime fiction has always been an important part of my life as a reader and as an editor. So it's a great honor to join the ilustrious list of recipiennts of the Ellery Queen Award, and to be selected by the MWA, an orgaanistation that has been done so much on behalf of writers, booksellers, and readers.”


The Edgar Awards, or “Edgars,” as they are commonly known, are named after MWA’s patron saint Edgar Allan Poe and are presented to authors of distinguished work in various categories. MWA is the premier organization for mystery writers, professionals allied to the crime-writing field, aspiring crime writers, and those who are devoted to the genre. The organization encompasses some 3,000 members including authors of fiction and non-fiction books, screen and television writers, as well as publishers, editors, and literary agents. 

Mystery Writers of America would like to emphasize our commitment to diversity and fairness in the judging of the Edgar Awards. Judges are selected from every region of the country, from every sub-category of our genre, and from every demographic to ensure fairness and impartiality. 

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