Final Report on the Strand Critics Awards…
(Anthony Horowitz, Angie Kim, Tess Gerritsen, Walter Mosley, and Bronwen Hruska took home the top awards via a virtual ceremony held on Friday, September 4.)
The Best Novel Award went to Anthony Horowitz for The Sentence is Death, while Angie Kim took home the Best Debut Novel Award for Miracle Creek.
Second time proved the charm for Horowitz who was nominated for the Best Novel Award in 2018. Horowitz who was holiday in Greece released a statement which was read by his publisher, Sara Nelson, “I have been asked to make a statement ahead of the awards ceremony….and must say, in all honesty, that given the outstanding quality of my fellow authors, I do not believe for a minute that I can win. If I am proven wrong, I will be deeply grateful to Strand Magazine, greatly honored—and will probably take to my bed in shock.”
Angie Kim took home debut novel honors and made an eloquent acceptance speech as a passenger in an automobile. Kim burst onto the scene last year with her debut novel Miracle Creek, a courtroom thriller which won several other awards including the Edgar Award for Best First Novel by an American author. “I’m so honored that the panel of critics has chosen Miracle Creek from this year’s amazing debut novels,” said Kim. “Thank you to the Strand Magazine for the award and for the creative virtual ceremony, which allowed us to celebrate together and pay tribute to the other award recipients and finalists.”
Gerritsen and Mosley Receive Lifetime Achievement Awards
This year, the Strand Magazine’s Lifetime Achievement Awards were presented to authors Tess Gerritsen and Walter Mosley.
In a writing career spanning several decades and multiple genres, Tess Gerritsen has stood out as one of the most inventive practitioners of the medical thriller. Her series featuring Boston police detective Jane Rizzoli and medical examiner Maura Isles has been a staple of best-seller lists (also inspiring a hit TV show), and her books have sold over 30 million copies worldwide.
“There’s something about just hanging in there and doing something every day that you love and never giving up. Persistence is a big part, but I have to credit luck,” said Gerritsen. “I’ve just been lucky. I wrote the right book at the right time. I found the right agent… I just have to give credit to kismet, or whatever it is that allowed me to keep on selling books.”
In 1990, the release of Devil in a Blue Dress marked the debut of Easy Rawlins, a clever, noble, and thoughtful private investigator in post-World War II Los Angeles. Author Walter Mosley earned plaudits for the novel, and for the past thirty years he has been compared to noir luminaries Raymond Chandler, Dashiell Hammett, and James M. Cain. Mosley is the author of more than 40 books and his work has been translated into 23 languages.
“I’m honored to have people reading things that I write,” said Mosley. “Any other art, if you’re a painter, or musician—it’s kind of easy to appreciate the work. Writing books, you gotta spend a lot of time reading. I’m so happy that the critics like me and they like my history.”
The Strand Magazine’s Publisher of the Year Award recognizes excellence in publishing…
This year’s recipient is Bronwen Hruska, publisher of Soho Press. An accomplished journalist and screenwriter, Hruska took the helm at Soho in 2010 and for the past ten years has overseen record growth, with scores of novels receiving critical and commercial acclaim.
“When I first met Bronwen Hruska ten years ago, she struck me as one of the most dynamic and creative forces in publishing,” said Managing Editor, Gulli. “That enthusiasm for making sure diverse voices are heard, for working hard for authors, and making sure that every book gets maximum support has if anything grown stronger with time.”
“This award is very kindly being given to me, but I am not Soho. Soho is a team of really fantastic people who care about the books and believe in the books, who work tirelessly and creatively and have really big brains and are passionate people” said Hruska. “This award is for all of them, all of them who have made this cool life possible, and of course to our amazing talented authors. Without your books, we wouldn’t be Soho crime, we wouldn’t exist.”
The Critics Awards were judged by a select group of book critics from NPR, Time, the Associated Press, The Florida Sun Sentinel, LA Times and the Washington Post.
Best Novel (2019)
Big Sky by Kate Atkinson (Little, Brown and Co.)
The Lost Man by Jane Harper (Flatiron Books)
The Sentence is Death by Anthony Horowitz (Harper)
Lady in the Lake by Laura Lippman (William Morrow)
Heaven, My Home by Attica Locke (Mulholland Books)
The Border by Don Winslow (William Morrow)
Best Debut Novel (2019)
Scrublands by Chris Hammer (Atria Books)
Miracle Creek by Angie Kim (Sarah Crichton Books, FSG)
One Night Gone by Tara Laskowski (Graydon House)
The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides (Celadon Books)
Three-Fifths by John Vercher (Agora Books)
Lifetime Achievement Awards
Publisher of the Year Award