Mystery Writers  of America (MWA) has announced the nominees for the 2012 Edgar Allan Poe Awards, “…honoring the best in mystery fiction, non-fiction and television published or produced in 2011.”  (MWA website.)  The awards will be presented to the winners on 4/26/12 in New York City.  This year I’m inspired by my writing pal and go-to-conference partner, Karen Burgess (Literary Lunchbox).  For the past two years Karen has read and critiqued the nominees from two of the Edgar categories, Best Novel and Best First Novel by an American Author, for a total of ten books.  She  then put herself out on the proverbial limb and predicted which books she thought would win.  This year I’m going to copy her.

The nominees for The Best Novel are:

  1. The Ranger, by Ace Atkins
  2. Gone, by Mo Hayder
  3. The Devotion of Suspect X, by Keigo Higashino
  4. 1222, by Anne Holt
  5. Field Gray, by Philip Kerr

Best First Novel by an American Author:

  1. Red on Red, by Edward Conlon
  2. Last to Fold, by David Duffy
  3. All Cry Chaos, by Leonard Rosen
  4. Bent Road, by Lori Roy
  5. Purgatory Chasm, by Steve Ulfelder

I have read none of these books, which is embarrassing to admit both as an aspiring mystery writer and voracious consumer of the genre.  I can only hope that none of them are as long as the book I’m currently reading, Elizabeth George’s Believing the Lie, which weighs in at 608 blissfully long pages.  So, ten books to read, critique and prognosticate on by April 25th…seems doable.