Honor roll: Anthony Award for Best Paperback Original

Each of these books has been nominated for an Anthony Award for Best Paperback Original. They are ranked by honors received.

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.

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.

Book:Drive Time

Drive Time: A Charlotte McNally Mystery

Hank Phillippi Ryan

Investigative reporter Charlotte McNally is an expert at keeping things confidential, but suddenly everyone has a secret—and it turns out it is possible to know too much.

Her latest scoop—an exposé of a dangerous car scam, complete with stakeouts, high-speed chases and hidden-camera footage—is ratings gold. But soon that leads her to a brand-new and diabolical scheme. Charlie’s personal and professional lives are on a collision course, too. Her fiancé is privy to information about threats at an elite private school that have turned deadly.

Charlie has never counted on happy endings. But now, just as she’s finally starting to believe in second chances, she realizes revenge, extortion and murder may leave her alone again—or even dead….

Book:The Hanging Tree

The Hanging Tree: A Starvation Lake Mystery

Bryan Gruley

When Gracie McBride, the wild girl who had left town eighteen years earlier, is found dead in an apparent suicide shortly after her homecoming, it sends shock waves through her native Starvation Lake. Gus Carpenter, executive editor of the Pine County Pilot, sets out to solve the mystery with the help of his old flame and now girlfriend, Pine County sheriff deputy Darlene Esper. As Gus and Darlene investigate, they can’t help but question if Gracie’s troubled life really ended in suicide or if the suspicious crime-scene evidence adds up to murder.

But in such a small town it’s impossible to be an impartial investigator—Gracie was Gus’s second cousin; Darlene’s best friend; and the lover of Gus’s oldest pal, Soupy Campbell. Yet with all the bad blood between Gus and Gracie over the years, Gus is easily distracted by other problems. His employer is trying to push him out, the locals are annoyed that his stories…[more]

Book:Vienna Secrets

Vienna Secrets: A Max Liebermann Mystery

Frank Tallis

In Freud’s dangerous, dazzling Vienna of 1903, an ingenious doctor and an intrepid detective again challenge psychotic criminals across a landscape teetering between the sophisticated and the savage, the thrilling future and the primitive past.

On opposite sides of the city, two men are found beheaded on church grounds. Detective Inspector Oskar Reinhardt is baffled. Could the killer be mentally ill, someone the victims came into contact with? Some are even blaming the murders on the devil. But when psychoanalyst Dr. Max Liebermann learns that both victims were vocal members of a shadowy anti-Semitic group, he turns his gaze to the city’s close-knit Hasidic community. The doctor is drawn into an urban underworld that hosts and hides virulent racists on one side and followers of kabbalah on the other. And as the evidence—and bodies—pile up, Liebermann must reconsider his own path, the one that led him away from the miraculous and toward a life of the mind.

Book:Air Time: A Charlotte McNally Mystery

Air Time: A Charlotte McNally Mystery

Hank Phillippi Ryan

When savvy TV reporter Charlotte McNally enters the glamorous world of high fashion, she soon discovers that when the purses are fake—the danger is real. And no one can be trusted!

Now Charlotte can’t tell the real from the fake as she goes undercover to bring the couture counterfeiters to justice—and in her struggle to answer an all-important, life-changing question from a certain handsome professor…

The one thing Charlotte knows for sure is that the wrong choice could be the last decision she ever makes!

Book:Quarry in the Middle

Quarry in the Middle

Max Allan Collins

First…there was the last quarry.
Then…there was the first quarry.
Now…look who’s caught in the middle.

The enigmatic hitman Quarry—star of seven celebrated novels and an award-winning feature film ("The Last Lullaby")—is back in this violent, steamy tale of warring crime families. When two rival casino owners covet the same territory, guess who puts himself in the crossfire...

Book:Big Maria

Big Maria: A Novel

Johnny Shaw

There’s gold in them thar hills—or more precisely, in Arizona’s Chocolate Mountains, where one hundred years ago a miner stashed a king’s ransom of the stuff. But times have changed. The world has changed. And now the Chocolate Mountains are the home of the largest military artillery range in the world.

Harry’s living on disability and getting liquored up and beaten down. Frank’s a feisty old-timer battling cancer and a domineering daughter. And Ricky’s a good kid in a bad spot, doing everything for family. Together they’re staking what little they have left on a dangerous quest to the Big Maria Mine—and the gold that can offer them a new beginning.

Unfortunately a meth-dealing biker wants a piece, a trigger-happy AWOL soldier wants to play chicken in a live minefield, two stubborn burros want to go home, a starving mountain lion wants his dinner, and the US Army wants to rain on our heroes’…[more]

Book:Buffalo West Wing

Buffalo West Wing: A White House Chef Mystery

Julie Hyzy

With a new First Family, White House executive chef Olivia Paras can’t afford to make any mistakes. But when a box of take-out chicken mysteriously shows up for the First Kids, she soon finds herself in a “no-wing” situation. After Olivia refuses to serve the chicken, the First Lady gives her the cold shoulder. But when it turns out to be poisoned poultry, Olivia realizes the kids are true targets.

Book:Murder for Choir

Murder for Choir: A Glee Club Mystery

Joelle Charbonneau

Even as a struggling opera singer, Paige Marshall has never seen anything like the cutthroat competition of the Prospect Glen High School show choir. Coaching these championship-hungry students may be her toughest gig yet…

Especially when her best young male singer is suspected of killing the arrogant coach of Prospect Glen’s fiercest rival. To clear his name, Paige will have to sort through a chorus of suspects, and go note-for-note with a killer who wants her out of the spotlight for good.

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