Annal: 2002 Barry Award for Best British Crime Novel

Results of the Barry Award in the year 2002.

Book:Dancing with the Virgins

Dancing with the Virgins: A Constable Ben Cooper Novel

Stephen Booth

Stephen Booth, one of the most acclaimed new voices in crime fiction, takes us to a remote region of northern England where a prehistoric ring of stones, the Nine Virgins, harbors a dark legend.

With winter looming, a tenth figure soon joins the circle: the body of young cyclist Jenny Weston, whose limbs are carefully arranged in death to parody a woman dancing. Weeks earlier, another woman, Maggie Crew, was attacked nearby, her face savagely cut open. Is there a maniac on the loose, knifing women at random? Maggie may hold the answer, but she has no memory of the attack. The painful images are buried deep in her wounded psyche. It will take time and patience to convince Maggie to face the demons of her past.

But are the two crimes—Jenny’s murder and Maggie’s assault—linked by something other than geography? Was there…[more]

Book:Blood Junction

Blood Junction: A Novel

Caroline Carver

In 1952, in a dusty, remote region of Australia, an Aboriginal family was executed by men wielding machetes. A half century later, a tall, beautiful young reporter who has made a life for herself abroad returns to Australia—and plunges into a mystery that lies at the heart of a family, a friendship, and a nation. Traveling to the Outback where the massacre occurred, India Kane is here to meet her best friend Lauren, a fellow journalist who has a story she wants India to hear.

Then, almost immediately after her arrival in the small, sun-bleached desert town known as Blood Junction, India is implicated in two murders. A stranger to the dark forces at work in this isolated, alienating world, India begins to play a dangerous game with the law and trusts a cop who is an outcast in his own right.

Now trying to find the answers to the crimes—and how they relate to the terrible bloodletting fifty years earlier—India…[more]

Book:Death in Holy Orders

Death in Holy Orders: An Adam Dalgliesh Mystery

P.D. James

Death in Holy Orders is set in an Anglican theological college on a desolate stretch of the East Anglian coast, a locality which she has made particularly her own. When the body of the one of the students is found on the shore smothered by a fall of sand, his weathly father demands that Scotland Yard should re-examine the verdict of accidental death. Commander Dalgliesh has visited St. Anselm’s in his boyhood and, as he is due for a holiday, agrees to pay a visit, expecting no more than a nostaglic return to old haunts and a straightforward examination of the evidence given at the inquest. Instead he finds himself embroiled in one of the most horrific and puzzling cases of his career. Other visitors come to the college on the weekend of his arrival, not all of them with benign intent. One of them will never leave it alive.

Book:Dialogues of the Dead

Dialogues of the Dead

Reginald Hill

In the Beginning was the Word…And the Word was Murder.

A motorist dies after plunging off a bridge…. A motorcyclist is found dead after a fatal encounter with a tree. Two apparently innocuous tragedies…until two Dialogues are submitted to a local literary competition, claiming responsibility for the deaths. But has anybody heard the Word?

When a beautiful, unscrupulous journalist meets her Maker in fact, and then in fiction, as victim of The Third Dialogue, Dalziel and Pascoe take note and find themselves involved in a deadly duel of wits against an opponent known only as the Wordman: a brilliant sociopath who leaves literary clues in his wake…and who hides in plain sight.

Contestants, are you ready? …[more]

Book:The Falls

The Falls: An Inspector Rebus Novel

Ian Rankin

Ian Rankin’s John Rebus, arguably the most realistic detective in crime fiction, is a brilliant but troubled man. When a young woman goes missing near his native Edinburgh, Scotland, Rebus finds himself just one small cog in the huge wheel of an inquiry set in motion by her powerfully rich father. Struggling to deal with both his own often-terrifying inner demons as well as the monstrous bureaucracy of the investigative team, Rebus finds himself drawn again and again into the case, desperately searching for the girl’s salvation, as well as his own.

In time Rebus uncovers two leads: one, a carved wooden doll stuffed tightly into a tiny casket, and the other the missing girl’s possible involvement in a dark, disturbing Internet-based role-playing game. He enlists the help of the tech-savvy DC Siobhan Clarke, who is young enough to know her way around the net, but who may not be old and wise enough to avoid potentially deadly…[more]

Book:The Killing Kind

The Killing Kind

John Connolly

When the discovery of a mass grave in northern Maine reveals the grim truth behind the disappearance of a religious community, private detective Charlie Parker is drawn into a violent conflict with a group of zealots intent on tracking down a relic that could link them to the slaughter. Haunted by the ghost of a small boy and tormented by the demonic killer known as Mr. Pudd, Parker is forced to fight for his lover, his friends…and his very soul.

Book:Killing the Shadows

Killing the Shadows

Val McDermid

A killer is on the loose, blurring the line between fact and fiction. His prey—the writers of crime novels who have turned psychological profilers into the heroes of the nineties. But this killer is like no other. His bloodlust shatters all the conventional wisdom surrounding the motives and mechanics of how serial killers operate. And for one woman, the desperate hunt to uncover his identity becomes a matter of life and death.

Professor Fiona Cameron is an academic psychologist who uses computer technology to help police forces track serial offenders. She used to help the Met, but vowed never to work for them again when they went against her advice and subsequently botched an investigation. Still smarting from the experience, she’s working a case in Toledo when her lover, thriller writer Kit Martin, tells her a fellow crime novelist has been murdered. It’s not her case, but Fiona can’t help taking an interest. When the…[more]

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