Annal: 1993 Agatha Award for Best First Novel

Results of the Agatha Award in the year 1993.

Book:Track of the Cat

Track of the Cat

Nevada Barr

A stunning mystery set against the high-country trails of the Guadalupe Mountains of West Texas, where the age-old battle of man against nature is fought with a frightening twist.

Anna Pigeon has fled New York and her memories to find work as a ranger in the country’s national parks. In the remote backcountry of West Texas, however, she discovers murder and violence. Fellow park ranger Sheila Drury is mysteriously killed, presumably by a mountain lion. But the deep claw marks Anna finds across Drury’s throat and the paw prints surrounding the body are too perfect to be real. Suspicious from the start and eager to prevent the needless slaughter of her beloved cougars, Anna can’t let the matter rest. The disappearance of another ranger and the frightening reality of a hiking “accident” of her own convince Anna that something is very wrong. Following a trail with few leads, Anna must confront the dark side of the desert. As she…[more]

Book:Child of Silence

Child of Silence: A Bo Bradley Mystery

Abigail Padgett

Padgett’s gritty and absorbing debut novel featuring a San Diego child abuse investigator evokes the emotional and psychological intensity of Jonathan Kellerman’s bestselling Alex Delaware books. Bo Bradley loves her job as an abuse investigator, but a troubling new case threatens not only a child’s life but her own.

Book:Death Comes as Epiphany

Death Comes as Epiphany: A Catherine LeVendeur Mystery

Sharan Newman

Catherine LeVendeur is a young scholar come to conquer her sin of pride at the Convent of the Paraclete, famous for learning, prayer, and its abbess, the fabled Heloise. When a manuscript the convent produced for the great Abbe Suger disappears, rumors surface saying the book contains sacrilegious passages and will be used to condemn Heloise’s famous lover, Peter Abelard.

To save her Order, and protect all she holds dear, Catherine must find the manuscript and discover who altered the text. She will risk disgrace, the wrath of her family and the Church, and confront an evil older than Time itself—and, if she isn’t careful, lose her immortal soul.

With Death Comes As Epiphany, the first in the Catherine LeVendeur mystery series, medievalist Sharan Newman has woven dark mystery and sparkling romance into a fascinating and richly detailed tapestry of everyday life in twelfth-century France, and one of the most moving love stories of all time: Abelard and Heloise.

Book:Goodnight, Irene

Goodnight, Irene: An Irene Kelly Novel

Jan Burke

For thirty-five years the identity of the dismembered woman found under the Las Piernas pier has remained a mystery. What secret did she take to her grave? Southern California reporter Irene Kelly has uncovered a maze of forensic records and confidential files that suggest a motive far more sinister than anyone imagined. The discovery has brought her close to Detective Frank Harriman, and closer still to exposing a killer who will resort to anything to keep his secrets buried—and Irene silenced forever.

Book:A Share in Death

A Share in Death: A Kincaid and James Mystery

Deborah Crombie

A week’s holiday in a luxurious Yorkshire time-share is just what Scotland Yard’s Superintendent Duncan Kincaid needs. But the discovery of a body floating in the whirlpool bath ends Kincaid’s vacation before it’s begun. One of his new acquaintances at Followdale House is dead; another is a killer. Despite a distinct lack of cooperation from the local constabulary, Kincaid’s keen sense of duty won’t allow him to ignore the heinous crime, impelling him to send for his enthusiastic young assistant, Sergeant Gemma James. But the stakes are raised dramatically when a second murder occurs, and Kincaid and James find themselves in a determined hunt for a fiendish felon who enjoys homicide a bit too much.

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