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Mystery Writers of America will present the annual Edgar Awards on May first in an array of categories. I have been reviewing nominiees in the “Best Novel” category over the past few months and have ranked them as follows (two have tied for first place):

1. Standing in Antoher Man’s Grave by Ian Rankin (9)
1. The Humans by Matt Haig (9)
3. Until She Comes Home by Lori Roy (8)
4. Sandrine’s Case by Thomas Cook (7)
5. Ordinary Grace by William Kent Krueger (5)
6. How the Light Gets In by Louise Penny (4)

My writing pal, Karen Burgess, has also read and rated the nominees and this year we differ quite a bit in our assessments. My choice for the winner is Ian Rankin’s book, as it provides the most reader satisfaction in terms of engagement, character development and mystery. My favorite book, however, is The Humans because it is fresh and has the ability to deliver pathos and humor; I laughed and cried reading it, which is kind of like life, no?

But I think Mystery Writers of American will choose William Kent Krueger’s Ordinary Grace for the Best Novel this year. His excellent Cork O’Connor series has never won an Edgar (nor been nominated for it, I think) and should have been. I think MWA will try to make up for that oversight by honoring Mr. Krueger this year (and well done, I say.)

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