Annal: 1996 Edgar Allan Poe Award® for Best Paperback Original

Results of the Edgar Allan Poe Award® in the year 1996.

Book:Tarnished Blue

Tarnished Blue: A Novel

William Heffernan

From a reporter turned author comes the fourth thriller featuring popular hero Paul Devlin following Ritual, Blood Rose and Scarred. When a cop is murdered, the investigation leads to a trail of conspiracy, sex and blackmail at the very highest reaches of government.

Book:Charged With Guilt

Charged With Guilt: A Ronnie Ventana Mystery

Gloria White

When P.I. and breaking-and-entering expert Ronnie Ventana agrees to test the security system of a house in Presido Heights, she gets into more trouble than any potential thief. With a dead senator in the upstairs bathroom, Ronnie’s entrance places her smack in the middle of the murder case—as the prime suspect.

Book:Deal Breaker

Deal Breaker: A Myron Bolitar Mystery

Harlan Coben

Sports agent Myron Bolitar is poised on the edge of the big time. So is Christian Steele, a rookie quarterback and Myron’s prized client. But when Christian gets a phone call from a former girlfriend, a woman who everyone, including the police, believes is dead, the deal starts to go sour. Trying to unravel the truth about a family’s tragedy, a woman’s secret, and a man’s lies, Myron is up against the dark side of his business—where image and talent make you rich, but the truth can get you killed.

In novels that crackle with wit and suspense, Edgar Award winner Harlan Coben has created one of the most fascinating and complex heroes in suspense fiction—Myron Bolitar—a hotheaded, tenderhearted sports agent who grows more and more engaging and unpredictable with each page-turning appearance.

Book:Hard Frost

Hard Frost: A Jack Frost Mystery

R.D. Wingfield

Detective Inspector Jack Frost, Denton Division, is not beloved by his superiors. In fact, he’s something of a pain in the brass: unkempt and unruly, with a taste for crude humor and a tendency to cut corners. They’d like nothing better than to bounce him from the department. The only problem is, Frost’s the one D.I. who, by hook or by crook, always seems to find a way to get the job done. It’s a high price to pay for a pak of smokes when Frost interrupts his vacation to filch some of Commander Mullett’s cigarettes and finds himself pressed into emergency duty. Denton Division is shorthanded after a car crash involving several tipsy high-ranking cops, and on Guy Fawkes night there’s more mischief abroad than just a few children making the rounds begging for pennies and lighting firecrackers. In the next few days, Frost will deal with a parade of miscreants, including a blackmailer, a shifty businessman, a not-so-greiving widow, a sexual pervert or two, a crazed housewife, and a cold-blooded kidnapper. The clock is ticking, and Frost is perilously short of clues…

Book:High Desert Malice

High Desert Malice

Kirk Mitchell

Dee Laguerre is a savvy 28-year-old ranger for the U.S. Bureau of Land Management. Wearing a .357 Magnum on her hip and driving a Ford Bronco, Dee covers her territory in west central Nevada—high desert corrugated by mountain ranges and basins. Checking into a tip regarding some improprieties, Dee stakes out a forested mountain and uncovers a crew with murder in mind. Original.

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