Annal: 2012 Edgar Allan Poe Award® for Best Paperback Original

Results of the Edgar Allan Poe Award® in the year 2012.

Book:The Company Man (Robert Jackson Bennett)

The Company Man

Robert Jackson Bennett

The year is 1919.

The McNaughton Corporation is the pinnacle of American industry. They built the guns that won the Great War before it even began. They built the airships that tie the world together. And, above all, they built Evesden-a shining metropolis, the best that the world has to offer.

But something is rotten at the heart of the city. Deep underground, a trolley car pulls into a station with eleven dead bodies inside. Four minutes before, the victims were seen boarding at the previous station. Eleven men butchered by hand in the blink of an eye. All are dead. And all are union.

Now, one man, Cyril Hayes, must fix this. There is a dark secret behind the inventions of McNaughton and with a war brewing between the executives and the workers, the truth must be discovered before the whole city burns. Caught between the union and the company, between the police and the victims, Hayes must uncover the mystery before it kills him.

Book:Death of the Mantis

Death of the Mantis: A Detective Kubu Mystery

Michael Stanley

The third novel in the fantastic Detective ‘Kubu’ Bengu crime series is set in the southern Kalahari area of Botswana—a place full of buried lost cities, incredible hidden wealth, ancient gods and, for thousands of years, home to the nomadic Bushmen. When a fractious ranger named Monzo is found dead, fallen into a donga—a dry ravine—surrounded by three Bushmen, the local police arrest the nomads. Detective ‘Kubu’ Bengu is on the case, which reunites him with his old school friend Khumanego, a Bushman and now an advocate for his people. Khumanego believes the arrests are motivated by racist antagonism from the police, as the Bushmen are claiming that they were at the murder scene because they were trying to help. Soon after Monzo’s death, Detective ‘Kubu’ learns of another case involving two botany students on their way back from a specimen-collecting trip but who were later found dead, seemingly poisoned, at a campground. Could the deaths be connected?

Book:The Dog Sox

The Dog Sox

Russell Hill

Ray Adams buys his girlfriend, beautiful Ava Belle, a baseball team for her birthday. She loves dogs and baseball. Ray’s gift is a broken-down semi-pro team in California’s Central Valley, with a 70-year-old Jewish manager who’s been in baseball for fifty years and breaks into Yiddish homilies when the going gets tough. He assembles a rag-tag lineup of sheetrockers, farm laborers, wanna-be big leaguers, and a freak submarine pitcher—10-year-iold Billy Collins. The only problem is that Billy has a drunken, abusive father who, when he shows up at the ballpark, causes Billy to fall apart. How to get rid of Bucky Collins becomes a primary goal, not just for the team’s sake, but for Billy’s. Rough him up? Pay him off? See that he has an “accident”? With him around, the team and Billy are simply not functional.

Book:The Faces of Angels

The Faces of Angels

Lucretia Walsh Grindle

On a sweltering day in Florence, art student and newlywed Mary Warren wandered into a shady tunnel of trees. Within minutes, she was brutally attacked and her husband murdered. And within months the killer was identified, caught, and dead. It’s now two years later, and Mary has returned to Florence at the invitation of her lover—a relationship that predates what she insists on calling the “accident.” Crumbling and beautiful, Florence is eternally compelling. But more and more, what Mary sees is not the glories of the city, but its dark underside—specifically, one dead young woman after another. She also can’t help seeing a terrifying pattern: Either this is a copycat killer, or her husband’s murderer is still on the loose.

Book:Vienna Twilight

Vienna Twilight: A Max Liebermann Mystery

Frank Tallis

In the dynamic and dangerous Vienna of 1903, a brilliant psychoanalyst and a brave detective battle to catch criminals who commit the most clever and brutal crimes.

Detective Inspector Oskar Reinhardt finds that young women are being slain in an unnerving—and ingenious—manner, with a small, almost undetectable, hat pin. For Dr. Max Liebermann, the killer is unique in the annals of psychopathology, one who murders in the midst of consensual love. Is the culprit a patient, one who swears he has a double, a shadow figure that is far more forward (in fact, indecent) with women? As danger mounts, Liebermann must find the answer while struggling with his own forbidden desire for a female patient.

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