The 2013 Ellis Peters Historical Dagger Shortlist: history and mystery

Posted: June 23, 2013 in Book Awards, Historical

51UgMlwgpcL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_SX385_SY500_CR,0,0,385,500_SH20_OU02_513mK8Q3A4L._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_SX385_SY500_CR,0,0,385,500_SH20_OU02_51-2TbBMlIL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_SX385_SY500_CR,0,0,385,500_SH20_OU02_516Kb3vwpVL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_SX385_SY500_CR,0,0,385,500_SH20_OU02_51tmhNSvKwL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_SX385_SY500_CR,0,0,385,500_SH20_OU02_51c0Fu8cTKL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_SX385_SY500_CR,0,0,385,500_SH20_OU02_It has always puzzled me that an award named after author Ellis Peters who created the medieval monk Brother Cadfael has only once in 13 years been won by a book from that period. That was in 2007 when the award went to the brilliant Mistress of the Art of Death  by the late Ariana Franklin.

Once again this year’s shortlist for the Ellis Peters has no medieval books so the trend will continue. Is it because history teaching syllabus when most authors were at school consisted of Western Front 1914-1918, Stalin, Hitler and the Tudors? If that is the case it is not a surprise that of 31 books short listed for the award over the past five years; 10 are set in the 1940s, 7 in Tudor times and 6 more are set in the 1930s and 1950s.

I aim to read some of this shortlist before the award dinner on 15 July, and possibly spot the winner.

  1. kathy d. says:

    I’m not going to attempt to do the impossible for me: read all of these books by mid-July. However, I will look forward to your reviews. Sometimes the reviews are as good as or better than the actual books, so I will check in to find them.

  2. Norman Price says:

    No pressure then Kathy. 😉 I hopefully will manage to read three of these before the judges give their decision.

  3. kathy d. says:

    I do await the reviews here. I’m stuck in two legal thrillers so I’ll be occupied for awhile. I want to return to global crime fiction but for some unexplicable reason, here I am back to U.S. lawyers’ conundrums. I must free myself.

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