Foreign Publishers Take Note: 2010 Edgar Nominees Offer Undiscovered Gems

In What's the Buzz by Edward Nawotka

By Edward Nawotka

Nothing sells better overseas than US mystery novels. The Edgar Allen Poe Awards acknowledges the “best in mystery fiction, non-fiction and television” published or produced each year and their shortlist has just been announced. While the rights to many of the “big name” authors have likely already been scooped up, the shortlist might be the place to go looking for those undiscovered gems…

Personally, I’d recommend Timothy Hallinan’s “The Queen of Patpong,” which is part of a series of novels set in Bangkok. You should you can read Hallinan’s essay “Why Bangkok?” that he wrote for us in 2009.

I’d also take a look at Nic Pizzolato’s “Galveston,” which captures some of the strangeness of that spit of land off Texas that’s constantly on the verge of being washed away into the sea, and Tom Franklin’s “Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter,” which is another fantastic novel from a writer who does Southern intrigue like no other.

Oh, and if you can make the awards ceremony on April 28 at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in New York City, you’ll be treated to a who’s-who of the mystery world — just be prepared for a long night, as there are a lot of awards.

The shortlist is as follows:


Caught by Harlan Coben (Penguin Group USA – Dutton)
Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter by Tom Franklin (HarperCollins/William Morrow)
Faithful Place by Tana French (Penguin Group USA – Viking)
The Queen of Patpong by Timothy Hallinan (HarperCollins ­- William Morrow)
The Lock Artist by Steve Hamilton (Minotaur/Thomas Dunne Books)
I’d Know You Anywhere by Laura Lippman (HarperCollins ­ William Morrow)


Rogue Island by Bruce DeSilva (Tom Doherty Associates ­ Forge Books)
The Poacher¹s Son by Paul Doiron (Minotaur Books)
The Serialist: A Novel by David Gordon (Simon & Schuster)
Galveston by Nic Pizzolatto (Simon & Schuster – Scribner)
Snow Angels by James Thompson (Penguin Group USA ­ G.P. Putnam’s Sons)


Long Time Coming by Robert Goddard (Random House – Bantam)
The News Where You Are by Catherine O’Flynn (Henry Holt)
Expiration Date by Duane Swierczynski (Minotaur Books)
Vienna Secrets by Frank Tallis (Random House Trade Paperbacks)
Ten Little Herrings by L.C. Tyler (Felony & Mayhem Press)


Scoreboard, Baby: A Story of College Football, Crime and Complicity
by Ken Armstrong and Nick Perry (University of Nebraska Press­ Bison Original)
The Eyes of Willie McGee: A Tragedy of Race, Sex, and Secrets in Jim Crow South by Alex Heard (HarperCollins)
Finding Chandra: A True Washington Murder Mystery by Scott Higham and Sari Horwitz (Simon & Schuster – Scribner)
Hellhound on his Trail: The Stalking of Martin Luther King, Jr and the International Hunt for his Assassin by Hampton Sides (Random House – Doubleday)
The Killer of Little Shepherds: A True Crime Story and the Birth of Forensic Science by Douglas Starr (Alfred A. Knopf)


The Wire: Truth Be Told by Rafael Alvarez (Grove Atlantic ­ Grove Press)
Agatha Christie’s Secret Notebooks: Fifty Years of Mysteries in the Making by John Curran (HarperCollins)
Sherlock Holmes for Dummies by Steven Doyle and David A. Crowder (Wiley)
Charlie Chan: The Untold Story of the Honorable Detective and his Rendevouz with American History by Yunte Huang (W.W. Norton)
Thrillers: 100 Must Reads edited by David Morrell and Hank Wagner (Oceanview Publishing)


“The Scent of Lilacs” ­ Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine by Doug Allyn (Dell Magazines)
“The Plot” ­ First Thrills by Jeffery Deaver (Tom Doherty ­ Forge Books)
“A Good Safe Place² ­ Thin Ice by Judith Green (Level Best Books)
“Monsieur Alice is Absent” ­ Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine
by Stephen Ross (Dell Magazines)
“The Creative Writing Murders” ­ Dark End of the Street by Edmund White (Bloomsbury)


Zora and Me by Victoria Bond and T.R. Simon (Candlewick Press)
The Buddy Files: The Case of the Lost Boy by Dori Hillestad Butler (Albert Whitman & Co.)
The Haunting of Charles Dickens by Lewis Buzbee (Feiwel & Friends)
Griff Carver: Hallway Patrol by Jim Krieg (Penguin Young Readers Group – Razorbill)
The Secret Life of Ms. Finkleman by Ben H. Winters (HarperCollins Children’s Books)


The River by Mary Jane Beaufrand (Little Brown Books for Young Readers)
Please Ignore Vera Dietz by A.S. King (Random House Children’s Books ­Alfred A. Knopf)
7 Souls by Barnabas Miller and Jordan Orlando (Random House Children’s Books ­ Delacorte Press)
The Interrogation of Gabriel James by Charlie Price (Farrar, Straus, Giroux Books for Young Readers)
Dust City by Robert Paul Weston (Penguin Young Readers Group – Razorbill)

“Skyler Hobbs and the Rabbit Man” ­ Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine by Evan Lewis (Dell Magazines)


(Presented at MWA’s Agents & Editors Party on Wednesday, April 27, 2010)

Wild Penance by Sandi Ault (Penguin Group ­ Berkley Prime Crime)
Blood Harvest by S.J. Bolton (Minotaur Books)
Down River by Karen Harper (MIRA Books)
The Crossing Places by Elly Griffiths (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)
Live to Tell by Wendy Corsi Staub (HarperCollins – Avon)

About the Author

Edward Nawotka

A widely published critic and essayist, Edward Nawotka serves as a speaker, educator and consultant for institutions and businesses involved in the global publishing and content industries. He was also editor-in-chief of Publishing Perspectives since the launch of the publication in 2009 until January 2016.