Dag­gers are com­ing out

The Times (South Africa) - - HOROSCOPES & FOOD - IF YOU READ ONE BOOK THIS WEEK Robin Hood Yard by Mark San­der­son (Harper) R215 THE IS­SUE CRASH COURSE THE BOT­TOM LINE

THE latest and third in San­der­son’s pro­ce­du­rals based in pre-war Lon­don fea­tur­ing re­porter John Stead­man and DC Matt Turner af­ter the grip­ping Snow Hill and The Whis­per­ing Gallery. It’s 1938 and this mur­der in­ves­ti­ga­tion is set against a back­drop of ris­ing an­ti­Semitism and es­ca­lat­ing vi­o­lence in Nazi Ger­many. The UK-based Crime Writ­ers’ As­so­ci­a­tion an­nounces its Dag­gers long-list this evening. Sim­ply put, this is the world’s best crime writ­ing of the last year in English. Deon Meyer’s Cobra is in the run­ning for an In­ter­na­tional Dag­ger, with Leif GW Pers­son’s Fall­ing Freely, As If In A Dream , Pierre Le­maitre’s Camille , An­dreas Nor­man’s Into a Rag­ing Blaze, Dolores Re­dondo’s The In­vis­i­ble Guardian and Karim Miské’s Arab Jazz.

The Gold Dag­ger long-list for the as­so­ci­a­tion’s novel of the year in­cludes Belinda Bauer’s The Shut Eye, James Car­los Blake’s The Rules of Wolfe, Sam Hawken’s Miss­ing, Paul Men­del­son’s The Ser­pen­tine Road, At­tica Locke’s Pleas­antville, Michael Robotham’s Life or Death, MJ McGrath’s The Bone Seeker, Peter Swan­son’s The Kind Worth Killing and Stephen King’s Mr Mercedes. The short-list for the Ian Flem­ing Sil­ver Dag­ger, for thrillers and spy nov­els, in­cludes Harlen Coben’s The Stranger, Steve Ca­vanagh’s The De­fence, Lin­wood Bar­clay’s No Safe House, Paula Hawkins’ The Girl on the Train, and Karin Slaugh­ter’s Cop Town.

En­tries for the John Creasey Dag­ger for best de­but in­clude Ce­leste Ng’s Ev­ery­thing I Never Told You, Smith Hen­der­son’s Fourth of July Creek, El­iz­a­beth Lit­tle’s Dear Daugh­ter, Paul E Hardisty’s The Abrupt Physics of Dy­ing and Tom Bouman’s Dry Bones in the Val­ley. The long-list for the En­deav­our His­tor­i­cal Dag­ger for (natch) his­tor­i­cal crime in­cludes Martin Davies’ Ha­vana Sleep­ing and CJ San­som’s Lamen­ta­tion. Cather­ine Aird, au­thor of the CD Sloan mys­ter­ies, is this year’s Diamond Dag­ger win­ner for her long ca­reer. For more de­tails see thecwa.co.uk. We’ll be on Mars by 2027. So says the science writer Stephen Pe­tranek, who has writ­ten a brief book about it, How We’ll Live On Mars. It’s pub­lished by Si­mon & Schuster’s TED im­print — you know, the peo­ple who do the YouTube lec­tures — so it has a sort of vi­sion­ary ur­gency that’s cat­nip to techno-nerds. Pe­tranek claims that the race to the red planet will be led by the mega rich — Elon Musk, Jeff Be­zos, Sir Richard Bran­son and the like. Not only will the coloni­sa­tion of Mars save the hu­man race from ex­tinc­tion but we will be able to mine it for rare met­als to make fancy smart­phones. All very in­trigu­ing, but there’s in­vari­ably lit­tle dis­cus­sion about the re­turn jour­ney. Just a nag­ging thought. “We de­serve bet­ter songs than any boy will ever write about us.” – The First Col­lec­tion of Crit­i­cism by a Liv­ing Fe­male Rock Critic by Jes­sica Hopper (Feather­proof)

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