CWA Announce Shortlists for Prestigious Crime Writing Daggers



The Crime Writers’ Association announced the shortlists for the prestigious annual Dagger awards for crime writing at an evening reception at Daunt Books, Cheapside, London, on Wednesday 25 July.


The shortlists provide some interesting duplications. Resurrection Bay by Emma Viskic appears on the shortlist for the CWA Gold Dagger and the CWA John Creasey (New Blood) Dagger, while A Necessary Evil by Abir Mukherjee is on the Gold and the CWA Historical shortlists. Bluebird, Bluebird by Attica Locke is on both the Gold and the CWA Ian Fleming Steel Dagger shortlists.  London Rules by Mick Herron also appears on the Gold and the Ian Fleming Steel longlists – he won the Ian Fleming last year with Spook Street, just as Mukherjee won the Historical with A Rising Man.  Also listed for the Historical Dagger is LC Tyler’s Fire and Stella Duffy’s completion of Ngaio Marsh’s Money in the Morgue.


For the CWA International Dagger, familiar names of Fred Vargas, Pierre Lemaître and Dolores Redondo appear alongside Henning Mankell.


Lee Child makes an appearance on the CWA Short Story Dagger shortlist, as does Christine Poulson with her story ‘Accounting for Murder’ from the CWA’s own anthology, Mystery Tour. Martin Edwards, Chair of the CWA and president of the Detection Club, features on the Dagger in the Library shortlist. The CWA Gold Dagger for Non-Fiction represents as an eclectic shortlist as ever, with Piu Marie Eatwell’s Black Dahlia Red Rose a notable title with its new take on an infamous murder case.


The CWA Daggers, which are the probably the awards crime authors and publishers alike most wish to win, are awarded every year in 10 categories. The Diamond Dagger, for a career’s outstanding contribution to crime fiction as nominated by CWA members, was announced earlier in the year and will be awarded to best-selling author Michael Connelly at the Dagger Awards event on October.


Here are the CWA Dagger shortlists for 2018.


The CWA Gold Dagger


Author                                  Title                                       Publisher


Steve Cavanagh                               The Liar                                             (Orion)


Mick Herron                                     London Rules                                   (John Murray)


Dennis Lehane                                 Since We Fell                                   (Little, Brown)


Attica Locke                                     Bluebird, Bluebird                           (Serpent’s Tail)


Abir Mukherjee                                A Necessary Evil                              (Harvill Secker)


Emma Viskic                                     Resurrection Bay                            (Pushkin Vertigo)



The CWA Ian Fleming Steel Dagger


Author                                  Title                                       Publisher


Mick Herron                                     London Rules                                   (John Murray Publishers)

Emily Koch                                       If I Die Before I Wake                   (Harvill Secker)

Attica Locke                                     Bluebird, Bluebird                          (Serpent’s Tail)

Colette McBeth                              An Act of Silence                            (Wildfire)

C J Tudor                                           The Chalk Man                                (Michael Joseph)

Don Winslow                                   The Force                                         (HarperFiction)


The Dagger sponsor, Ian Fleming Publications Ltd is the Fleming family-owned company that looks after the James Bond literary brand, by promoting and making available all of Ian Fleming’s 007 books across the world.  They also keep the brand alive through the publication of new stories by other authors such as Anthony Horowitz.



The CWA John Creasey (New Blood) Dagger



Author                                  Title                                       Publisher


William Boyle                                   Gravesend                                        (No Exit Press)


Joe Ide                                               I.Q.                                                      (Weidenfeld &  Nicolson)


Danya Kukafka                                 Girl in Snow                                      (Picador)


Melissa Scrivner Love                    Lola                                                    (Point Blank)


Khurrum Rahman                            East of Hounslow                            (HQ)


Emma Viskic                                     Resurrection Bay                            (Pushkin Vertigo)


The CWA ALCS Gold Dagger for Non-Fiction


Author                                  Title                                       Publisher


Piu Eatwell                            Black Dahlia Red Rose                     (Coronet)


David Grann                          Killers of the Flower Moon             (Simon & Schuster)


Thomas Harding                   Blood on the Page                            (Heinemann)


Alexandria Mariano-Lesnevich      The Fact of a Body               (Macmillan)


  1. Christian Miller & Ken Armstrong A False Report (Hutchinson)


Laura Thompson                  Rex V Edith Thompson                    (Head of Zeus)


The Dagger’s sponsor The Authors’ Licensing and Collecting Society (ALCS) is a not-for-profit organisation for the benefit of all types of writers. Owned by its members, ALCS collects money due for secondary uses of writers’ work. It is designed to support authors and their creativity, ensure they receive fair payment, and see their rights are respected. It promotes and teaches the principles of copyright and campaigns for a fair deal. Today it represents over 95,000 members, and since 1977 has paid over £450 million to writers.




The CWA Historical Dagger


Author                                  Title                                       Publisher


Abir Mukherjee                                A Necessary Evil                              (Harvill Secker)


  1. C. Tyler  Fire  (Constable)


Thomas Mullen                                Lightning Men                                  (Little, Brown)


Ngaio Marsh & Stella Duffy          Money in the Morgue                    (HarperCollins)


Nicola Upson                                   Nine Lessons                                    (Faber & Faber)


Rory Clements                                 Nucleus                                              (Zaffre Publishing)


The CWA International Dagger


Author, Translator                        Title                                       Publisher


Oliver Bottini, tr Jamie Bulloch                   Zen and the Art of Murder            (MacLehose)


Pierre Lemaître tr Frank Wynne                 Three Days and a Life                     (MacLehose)


Henning Mankell, tr Marlaine Delargy     After the Fire                                    (Harvill Secker)


Jon Michelet, tr Don Bartlett                      The Frozen Woman                        (No Exit Press)


Dolores Redondo, tr Nick Caistor & Lorenza Garzía

Offering to the Storm                    (HarperCollins)


Fred Vargas, tr Sian Reynolds                     The Accordionist                             (Harvill Secker)





The CWA Short Story Dagger


‘The Last Siege of Bothwell Castle’ by Chris Brookmyre

Bloody Scotland (Historic Environment Scotland)


‘Second Son’ by Lee Child

No Middle Name: The Complete Collected Jack Reacher Stories (Bantam Press)


‘Smoking Kills’ by Erin Kelly

“The Body” Killer Women Crime Club Anthology 2, Edited by Susan Opie (Killer Women Ltd)


‘Nemo Me Impune Lacessit’ by Denise Mina

Bloody Scotland (Historic Environment Scotland)


‘Accounting for Murder’ by Christine Poulson

Mystery Tour: CWA Anthology of Short Stories, Edited by Martin Edwards

(Orenda Books)




The CWA Dagger in the Library


Nominated by libraries.


Martin Edwards                                            

Nicci French                                    

Edward Marston                            

Peter May                                       

Rebecca Tope                                 

Simon Kernick


The CWA Debut Dagger


For the opening of a crime novel from a writer without a traditional publishing contract.

The Eternal Life of Ezra Ben Simeon by Bill Crotty

The Last Googling of Beth Bailly by Luke Melia

Riverine Blood by Joseph James

Original Sins by Linda McLaughlin

Trust Me, I’m Dead by Sherryl Clark



The winners of the CWA Daggers will be announced at the Dagger Awards dinner in London on 25 October, for which tickets are now available. Visit for more information or email .

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