The Crime Writers’ Association

CWA Dagger Awards Winners Announced

The Crime Writers’ Association have presented their final 2015 CWA Dagger Awards to authors Smith Henderson, Karin Slaughter and Michael Robotham.

At the CWA Dagger Awards reception, which took place at Malmaison, London on Tuesday evening, the CWA John Creasey (New Blood) Dagger was awarded to Smith Henderson for his novel Fourth Of July Creek. This Dagger is awarded for the best crime novel by a first-time author. The judges said of the book, which is published by Random House/William Heinemann,”A powerful evocation of the rural America time has forgotten and the casualties in its wake. Both harrowing and life enhancing, a towering achievement and insight into a world many of us would rather ignore.”

Karin Slaughter was awarded the CWA Ian Fleming Steel Dagger for her novel, Cop Town. This Dagger is presented to the best thriller story of the year. Of Cop Town, published by Random House/Century, it was said, “The judges loved this fascinating story filled to the brim with rich and evocative period detail of Atlanta in 1974. The judges found the characters to be instantly real, engaging well-drawn and convincing helping the reader to be pulled through this dark and twisted story to the very end.”

The CWA Goldsboro Gold Dagger was won by Michael Robotham for Life or Death. This Dagger is awarded to the book considered to be the best crime novel of the year by our judges. They said of Life or Death, published by Little, Brown Book Group/Sphere, “When you start reading Life or Death, you’ll want to stay curled up in an armchair with one of the best thrillers you’ll read this year. This is a compelling and fascinating book.”

The Dagger reception concluded the 2015 CWA Dagger Awards, which also saw the launch of new web initiative Dagger Reads ( “This has been a simply wonderful year for the crime fiction genre and our judges were incredibly impressed by the standard of the entries,” says CWA chair Len Tyler. “We’re delighted to have been able to showcase and explore these 18 books in Dagger Reads. Next year we’re rolling this initiative out to encompass all our Daggers and give readers the chance to discover all our shortlisted books. It’s a true celebration of the best work in the crime genre.”

The event was attended by a number of the short-listed authors including Michael Robotham, Paula Hawkins, Belinda Bauer, Mick Herron, Kate Hamer, Peter Swanson, Malcolm MacKay and Robert Galbraith.

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