Last three CWA Dagger winners announced
The winners of the last three CWA Daggers were revealed at the Specsavers Crime Thriller Awards, which took place in a glittering ceremony at Grosvenor House, London, on 18th October 2012.
Gene Kerrigan’s The Rage won The CWA Gold Dagger. His suspense driven storm of violence set in the backstreets of Dublin proved unbeatable, an immense accolade given the literary oomph of his co-nominees: MR Hall’s The Flight, Chris Womersley’s Bereft and Vengeance in Mind by NJ Cooper, previously Chair of the Crime Writers’ Association.
Gene Kerrigan commented: “I’m aware of the writers who have previously received the Gold Dagger and I’m honoured to have my name on the same page.”
The CWA Ian Fleming Steel Dagger for Best Thriller was taken home by Charles Cumming for A Foreign Country. Despite being regarded as one of the best of the new generation of British spy writers, A Foreign Country was by no means assured of success, pitted as it was against some monumental thrillers: Megan Abbott’s Dare Me, which revealed the bitter power rivalries of a cheerleading squad, Robert Harris’s much lauded The Fear Index and Neal Stephenson’s Reamde which portrays the world of hacking.
Charles Cumming said “For spy writers, the Steel Dagger is our Booker prize, so I’m thrilled to have won such a prestigious award. Some great writers have picked up the Steel Dagger, including Henry Porter, Dan Fesperman and Tom Rob Smith. I’m honoured to have joined their ranks.”
The CWA John Creasey (New Blood) Dagger was awarded to Wiley Cash, named the best new crime author of the year for A Land More Kind than Home. Cash toughed it out against serious competition from Tanya Byrne’s Heart-Shaped Bruise, Tom Wright’s What Dies in Summer and Ewart Hutton’s Good People to win the title for his tale of the smarting underbelly of religious fanaticism of his Deep South youth.
Wiley Cash said “As an American writer, it’s a shock and a real honour to win an award in a genre with such a proud British tradition.”
More details about the winners and the shortlists on the individual Daggers pages, linked above.
CWA Chair Peter James said “The very high profile being given again this year to the CWA Dagger Awards, by their being televised as part of the Specsavers Crime Thriller Awards, indicates the ever-growing reader awareness of the quality of today’s crime and thriller fiction writing.
The Crime Writers Association has played a major role both in discovering and supporting the careers of many of our finest writers. Among the huge roll call of those the CWA has honoured are PD James, Ian Rankin, Frederick Forsyth, Ruth Rendell, Val McDermid and Alexander McCall Smith.
When you tune in for the awards you will see the winners in each category – and not just the authors who get the prizes. Because the very considerable achievement of making that shortlist, makes every author on it a winner, too.”
Earlier Dagger winners
Thursday July 5: The Crime Writers’ Association this evening announced six Dagger awards at their black tie dinner awards ceremony in the Library at One Birdcage Walk in London. At the same ceremony the CWA Diamond Dagger award was presented to thriller writer Frederick Forsyth.
CWA Chair Peter James declared, “There has been a truly stellar line up of nominees and the judges in all categories had a very tough time selecting the winners. The Crime Writers’ Association Dagger Awards are the longest running literary awards in the UK, and the quality of the entries, judges and those attending the ceremony demonstrates just how sought after and prestigious they are. Many crime writers, including such great names as Ian Rankin, Val McDermid, Elmore Leonard and of course tonight, Freddie Forsyth, have held these prizes - and, so far as we know, never yet stabbed anyone with them. But there's always the first time…”
The CWA Ellis Peters Historical Dagger has been won by Aly Monroe with Icelight, described by the judges as having “… the young le Carré’s ability to conjure atmosphere and a poetic style worthy of Len Deighton.”
And it’s fourth time lucky for Andrea Camilleri, whose Inspector Montalbano novels, translated by Stephen Sartarelli, have been shortlisted three times in the past five years. Now The Potter’s Field has won through to take the CWA International Dagger with a book which “shows just how much can be achieved with familiar materials when a writer conveys the sense of life in a recognizable place.”
The CWA Dagger for Non-fiction has been won by the husband and wife team of Anthony Summers and Robbyn Swan with The Eleventh Day, for their “most-extensively researched account of what happened on 11 September, 2001”. Anthony Summers now has the accolade of the longest stretch of time between two Dagger wins following his 1980 Non-Fiction Gold Dagger for Conspiracy.
The CWA Dagger in the Library goes to Steve Mosby – the judges “… relished his ability to spin really good yarns which creeped us out in no small measure.” The CWA Short Story Dagger is shared between Cath Staincliffe and Margaret Murphy for their stories, both in the Murder Squad anthology Best Eaten Cold. Finally the 2012 Debut Dagger has been won by Sandy Gingras with her story Beached.