CWA Daggers for Disgraced Spies, Elderly Snipers, and Ghostmen

Earlier this spring Barbara Conaty, my go-to reviewer for spy fiction, praised  British author Mick Herron’s latest novel, Dead Lions, for “bringing a fresh and puckish eye to espionage and crime, leaving behind the stodgy staples.” The judges of Britain’s CWA Dagger Awards obviously agreed with Conaty’s assessment. Awarding Herron  the CWA 2013 Goldsboro Gold Dagger for the best crime novel of the year,  they lauded this sequel to the acclaimed Slow Horses as ” a well written, wickedly clever send-up of the classic British spy novel.” For people who think they don’t like espionage fiction, they may change their minds after reading this lively tale of three disgraced M15 agents seeking redemption as they untangle two twisty plots. Kudos to Soho Crime for picking a winner!

Other winners announced at the Specsavers Crime Thriller Awards 2013 on October 24 included 23-year-old Roger Hobbs, who was honored with the CWA 2013 Ian Fleming Steel Dagger for best thriller of the year for his debut novel Ghostman. And newcomer Derek B. MIller took the  CWA 2013 John Creasey Dagger, for best new crime writer of the year. The judges cited  Miller’s chase thriller about an octogenarian former sniper,  Norwegian by Night, as a “beautifully-written contribution to Nordic noir with a twist.”




Wilda Williams About Wilda Williams

Wilda "Willy" Williams ( is LJ's Fiction Editor. She specializes in popular fiction and edits the Mystery, Science Fiction, Christian Fiction, and Word on Street Lit columns.