Annal: 2013 Edgar Allan Poe Award® for Best Paperback Original

Results of the Edgar Allan Poe Award® in the year 2013.

Book:The Last Policeman

The Last Policeman: A Novel

Ben H. Winters

What’s the point in solving murders if we’re all going to die soon, anyway?

Detective Hank Palace has faced this question ever since asteroid 2011GV1 hovered into view. There’s no chance left. No hope. Just six precious months until impact.

The Last Policeman presents a fascinating portrait of a pre-apocalyptic United States. The economy spirals downward while crops rot in the fields. Churches and synagogues are packed. People all over the world are walking off the job—but not Hank Palace. He’s investigating a death by hanging in a city that sees a dozen suicides every week—except this one feels suspicious, and Palace is the only cop who cares.

The first in a trilogy, The Last Policeman offers a mystery set on the brink of an apocalypse. As Palace’s investigation…[more]

Book:Blessed are the Dead

Blessed are the Dead: An Emmanuel Cooper Mystery

Malla Nunn

Detective Sergeant Emmanuel Cooper returns in this powerful, atmospheric novel about two communities forced to confront each other after a murder that exposes their secret ties and forbidden desires in apartheid South Africa, by award-winning author Malla Nunn.

The body of a beautiful seventeen-year-old Zulu girl, Amahle, is found covered in wildflowers on a hillside in the Drakensberg Mountains, halfway between her father’s compound and the enormous white-owned farm where she worked. Detective Sergeant Cooper and Detective Constable Samuel Shabalala are sent to the desolate landscape to investigate. They soon discover that Amahle’s life was woven into both the black and white communities in ways they could never have imagined. Cooper and Shabalala must enter the guarded worlds of a traditional Zulu clan and a divided white farming community to gather up the secrets she left behind and…[more]

Book:Bloodland (Alan Glynn)

Bloodland

Alan Glynn

A helicopter crash off the coast of Ireland sends unexpected ripples through the international community in this intricate new thriller from the author of Winterland and Limitless (now a major motion picture).

Susie Monaghan was on the cusp of stardom when her life was cut short by a tragic helicopter crash. After a full investigation, her death was ruled an accident: case closed. But a hungry young journalist named Jimmy Gilroy isn’t buying the official story. Before dying, Susie’s path had crossed with an unlikely gallery of powerful men: an ex-Prime minister with a carefully guarded secret; the businessman brother of a U.S. Senator angling for the Oval Office; and a billionaire investor with his eye on an extremely rare commodity. Might there also be a link between Susie’s death and a deranged security contractor operating in Congo? Piece by piece, Jimmy uncovers a bizarre nexus of coincidence among these disparate people and events, revealing a conspiracy…[more]

Book:Complication (Isaac Adamson)

Complication

Isaac Adamson

A serial killer with a penchant for severed hands. A watch that runs backward and forward—at the same time. An Eastern European gangster known only as Rumplestiltskin. The Nazi invasion of Prague, Soviet-era Czech secret police, 16th century alchemy and black magic—mild-mannered American Lee Holloway never thought any of these would intrude upon his ordinary life.

But that was before he received a mysterious letter from a woman named Vera, a cryptic missive implying Lee’s estranged brother Paul, who disappeared years ago in Prague, was actually murdered in an attempt to steal The Rudolf Complication, a priceless watch commissioned by the eccentric Holy Roman Emperor Rudolf II, rumored to hold the power of eternal life. When Lee goes to Prague to investigate, his involvement with the enigmatic Vera, as well as the guidance offered from a mysterious travel book, triggers a series of violent and bizarre events that force Lee to confront disturbing truths about his brother as well as himself.…[more]

Book:Whiplash River

Whiplash River: A Novel

Lou Berney

Having left his life of crime behind, former getaway driver Charles “Shake” Bouchon has finally realized the dream of owning his own restaurant in Belize. Unfortunately, to do so he’s had to go deep in debt to a murderous local drug lord named Baby Jesus. And when Shake thwarts an attempted hit on an elderly customer named Quinn, things go from bad to worse.

Next thing Shake knows, his restaurant’s gone up in flames and he’s on the run from Baby Jesus, two freelance assassins, and a beautiful but ferocious FBI agent. Out of options, Shake has to turn to the mysterious Quinn for help. Suddenly Shake’s up to his neck in a dangerous score that he’ll never pull off unless he can convince an even more dangerous ex-girlfriend to join him.

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