Wednesday, July 14, 2004

Deadly Pleasures mystery magazine announced the nominations for the 2004 Barry Awards today. (The winners will be named at the Bouchercon convention in October.) Overall, it's a strong lineup. Selecting just a handful of nominees out of all the possible choices is always a daunting task. When Mystery Ink picks the Gumshoe Award nominees each year, it's a real struggle.

I'm surprised to see that Steve Hamilton's Blood Is the Sky wasn't nominated, though. That was one helluva book -- which is why we gave it the Gumshoe. I'd rather see that on this list than the Lehane book.

Best Mystery Novel
The Guards by Ken Bruen (Minotaur $23.95)
The Small Boat of Great Sorrows (Knopf, $24.00)
Keeping Watch by Laurie R. King. (Bantam $23.95)
Shutter Island by Dennis Lehane, (Morrow, $25.95)
Every Secret Thing by Laura Lippman (Morrow $ 24.95)
Fountain Filled with Blood by Julia Spencer-Fleming (St. Martin’s Minotaur, $23.95)

Best First Mystery Novel
Mission Flats by Bill Landay (Bantam Press, June £12.99; Delacorte, September $23.95)
Bridge of Sighs by Olen Steinhauer (St. Martin’s Minotaur, $23.95)
The Barbed-Wire Kiss by Wallace Stroby (St. Martin’s Minotaur $24.95)
Monkeewrench by P. J. Tracy. (Putnam
Maisie Dobbs by Jacqueline Winspear (Soho, $24.00)
Clea's Moon by Edward Wright (Putnam, $23.95)

Best British Mystery Novel
Lazybones by Mark Billingham ((Little, Brown £12.99)
Full Dark House by Christopher Fowler (Doubleday, £12.99)
The Murder Exchange by Simon Kernick (Bantam Press, £12.99)
The House Sitter by Peter Lovesey (Little Brown, £16.99)
The Distant Echo by Val McDermid (HarperCollins, £17.99)
The American Boy (U.S. title: An Unpardonable Crime) by Andrew Taylor (Flamingo, £17.99)

Best Paperback Original Mystery
Dealing in Murder by Elaine Flinn (Avon, $6.50)
Wisdom of the Bone by Christopher Hyde (Onyx, $7.50)
The Courier by Jay MacLarty (Pocket Star, $6.99)
Tough Luck by Jason Starr (Vintage Crime, $12.00
The Shadow of Venus by Judith Van Gieson (Signet, $5.99)
Murder Between the Covers by Elaine Viets (Signet, $5.99)

Best Mystery Short Story
(Click on highlighted titles to read the stories, courtesy of Deadly Pleasures)
Doug Allyn - "The Blind Pig" (EQMM May 2003)
Robert Barnard - "Rogues' Gallery" (EQMM March 2003)
Brendan DuBois - "Always Another War" (AHMM July-August 2003)
Clark Howard - "The Mask of Peter" (EQMM April 2003)
Donald Olson - "Rogue's Run" (EQMM April 2003)

Out of these choices, my picks would be:
Laura Lippman for Best Mystery, P.J. Tracy for Best First and Elain Flinn for Best PBO. I haven't read any of the British books or the short stories (yet).