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March 12, 2008


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Clea Simon

Just to be the devil's advocate: I'd make the case for a "best paperback only" category simply because they don't get much press. Therefore, simply because they are not as well known, they tend to get overlooked by most awards. You could make the same case for "best small press," for example. Don't have to, but that would be one argument for.

I.J. Parker

Thank you, Clea.
Of course, that wouldn't be necessary if pb originals were included in the other categories, but frequently they have already been eliminated as not equally qualified.

David Montgomery

We've nominated several paperback originals for the Gumshoes over the years. (And there is one, Phil Hawley's Stigma, on this year's shortlist as well. Also Craig McDonald's Head Games only received a limited hardcover release. For all intents and purposes, it's a paperback as well.)

The problem as I see it is that if you set up a "special" category for Best Paperback, you're acknowledging that they are a lesser form, and not worthy of competition for Best Novel with hardbacks. I don't believe that is true. I think there are superior novels being released as PBOs and that their binding is irrelevant. Thus, I prefer to allow all books to compete as equals, and let the best rise to the top.

John Dishon

What's the difference between mystery and thriller, as far as the award is concerned? What qualities would a book have that would put it in one category as opposed to the other?

Cameron Hughes

Mystery doesn't have to be fast-paced. A thriller typically doesn't need an element of seeking answers to questions.

David J. Montgomery

I mused on the differences between mysteries and thrillers a while back... But one of the most basic differences is that a mystery is usually about the investigation of a
crime (i.e., the mystery) and a thriller is about the prevention of a future crime (with that anticipation generating the thrills). Not all crime novels fall easily into that calculus, but it explains most of them.
It's largely an academic difference in the minds of most readers, but why have hairs if you're not going to split them?


Screw you, you fookin' bastard!

Elaine Flinn

"We've nominated several paperback originals for the Gumshoes over the years.."

And I'm here to say how flattered, honored and appreciative I shall always be to have been a pbo Gumshoe nominee!

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I also wanted to nominate some paperback originals gumshoes.that is why I will subscribe to this blog later. great and interesting!

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Wow, I didn't even know there was an award for crime novels!... I'm ashamed right now... And I call my self a lover of Literature???

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well is not rare see a excellent mysterious, drama, or good terror novel from UK, this country is famous for it murderers and strange places.

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David J. Montgomery is a writer and critic specializing in books and publishing. He is an emeritus columnist for the Chicago Sun-Times and The Daily Beast, and has also written for USA Today, the Washington Post, and other fine publications. A former professor of History, he lives in Northern Virginia with his wife and two daughters.

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