Silver Falchion

2022 Killer Nashville Silver Falchion Awards

From the Killer Nashville site:We believe all engaging stories have three elements: mystery, thriller, and suspense. Since 2008, the Killer Nashville Silver Falchion Awards have recognized the best stories from the previous year told through various media utilizing the elements of mystery, thriller, and/or suspense. Judges are professional writers, book reviewers, librarians, academics, and—in specialized cases—specific industry peers. Focus is on quality, not popularity.”

Congratulations to the finalists!

2022 Best Action Adventure Finalists
“Murder at Buckskin Joe” – J.v.L. Bell

“Killers!: A Natalie McMasters Mystery” – Thomas A. Burns, Jr.
“Castoffs of the Gods” / Sonja Dewing
“The Cornmarket Conspiracy” / Sharon Hoisager
“Fatal Depth” / Timothy S. Johnston
“Beneath a Wrathful Sun” / M. Elliot Lamb
“The Pilate Scroll” / M.B. Lewis
“Came A Horseman” / Paul McHugh
“Alaskan Christmas Escape” / Juno Rushdan
“The Last of Her” / Brent Spencer

2022 Best Cozy Finalists
Where the Light Shines Through” –  Kathleen Bailey

“Dead on My Feet”-  Patricia Broderick
“An Embarrassment of Itches” / M.K. Dean
“Time After Tyme” / Kay DiBianca
“The Evening’s Amethyst” / M. K. Graff
“Suitable for Framing” / Lori Roberts Herbst
“The Unkindness of Ravens” / M.E. Hilliard
“Muffins & Magic” / Polly Holmes
“Death By Chance” / Abigail Keam
“The Fog Ladies: In the Soup” / Susan McCormick
“Gone Missin’” / Peggy O’Neal Peden
“Death at the Salon” / Louise Rose-Innes
“Murder Worth a Thousand Words” / Becki Willis
“Stitch, Bake, Die!” / Lois Winston

2022 Best Historical Finalists
Heirs of Falcon Point” –  Traci Abramson

“Cry of the Innocent” / Julie Bates
“The Turncoat’s Widow” / Mally Becker
“After Alice Fell” / Kim Taylor Blakemore
“The Artist Colony” / Joanna FitzPatrick
“No One Must Know” / Susan Frances
“Murder Under A Full Moon: A 1930s Mona Moon Mystery” / Abigail Keam
“Murder Under A New Moon” / Abigail Keam
“The Promise of Deception” / Jessica Sly
“Zebra: Friends by Fate. Enemies by Destiny” / Jill Wallace

2022 Best Investigator Finalists
All That Fall” –  Kris Calvin

“The Blessed Bones” / Kathryn Casey
“Girl Missing” / Kate Gable
“Be Mine Forever” / D.K. Hood
“In the Name Of” / Candace Irving
“Now & Then” / Justin M. Kiska
“The Lost Dragon Murder” / Michael Allan Mallory
“The Disappearance of Trudy Solomon” / Marcy McCreary
“Striking Range: A Timber Creek K-9 Mystery” / Margaret Mizushima
“Hide in Place” / Emilya Naymark
“At First Light” / Barbara Nickless
“The Labyrinth” / Owen Parr
“The Winter Girls” / Roger Stelljes

2022 Best Mystery Finalists
An Ambush of Widows” – Jeff Abbot

“Red Rabbit On The Run” –  Jodi Bowersox
“Bluff” / John DeDakis
“A Killer’s Daughter” / Jenna Kernan
“When Silence Screams” / Mark Edward Langley
“The Dark Remains” / William McIlvanney & Ian Rankin
“Spirit: An Andrea Kelley Mystery (The Archivist Book 2)” / Elle Andrews Patt
“The Archivist” / Rex Pickett
“The Scorpion’s Tail” / Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child
“Grave Reservations” / Cherie Priest
“The Ruthless” / David Putnam
“Hunted in the Holler” / Drew Strickland
“Death and Consequences, An Eastern Shore Mystery” / Cheril Thomas
“The First Day of Spring” / Nancy Tucker
“Bye, Buy Baby” / Becki Willis

2022 Best Sci-fi / Fantasy Finalists
Journey to the Past” –  Esteban Corio

“Schrodinger’s Cat” –  Ronald Crittenden
“Hall of Skulls” / Jamie Eubanks
“The Last Beekeeper” / Jared Gulian
“House of Bastiion” / K.L. Kolarich
“Beryl Blue, Time Cop” / Janet Raye Stevens
“Tomb of the Queen” / Joss Walker
“Consent, Vol. 1: Erdos” / Wilson Whitlow
“Missing on Orbital 4: A Jake Hemlock Adventure” / Cory Wilcox

2022 Best Suspense Finalists
“In Harm’s Way” – Traci Abramson

“Redemption” – Traci Abramson
“Nanny Needed” / Georgina Cross
“Waiting for the Night Song” / Julie Carrick Dalton
“Hostile Intent” / Lynette Eason
“Furious: Sailing into Terror” / Jeffrey James Higgins
“Rattlesnake Road” / Amanda McKinney
“Redemption Road” / Amanda McKinney
“The Reunion” / Kiersten Modglin
“Cottonmouth: A Jessica James Mystery” / Kelly Oliver
“Woman in Shadow” / Carrie Stuart Parks
“Her Ocean Grave” / Dana Perry
“The Next Wife” / Kaira Rouda
“What Comes After” / JoAnne Tompkins
“Beneath the Marigolds” / Emily C. Whitson

2022 Best Thriller Finalists
Her Name is Knight” – Yasmin Angoe

“The Ambulance Chaser” – Brian Cuban
“The Chaos Kind” / Barry Eisler
“Devil’s Ledger” / Lorraine Evanoff
“A Slow Fire Burning” / Paula Hawkins
“Furious: Sailing into Terror” / Jeffrey James Higgins
“56 Days” / Catherine Ryan Howard
“Blink of an Eye” / Iris Johansen
“The Missing Piece” / John Lescroart
“Stone the Dead Crows” / Carrie Magillen
“The Family Tree” / Steph Mullin and Nicole Mabry
“Point Option” / Ian O’Connor
“The Kingdoms” / Natahsa Pulley
“The Siren” / Katherine St. John
“Impostor Syndrome” / Kathy Wang

 

2021 Killer Nashville Silver Falchion Awards

From the Killer Nashville site:We believe all engaging stories have three elements: mystery, thriller, and suspense. Since 2008, the Killer Nashville Silver Falchion Awards have recognized the best stories from the previous year told through various media utilizing the elements of mystery, thriller, and/or suspense. Judges are professional writers, book reviewers, librarians, academics, and—in specialized cases—specific industry peers. Focus is on quality, not popularity.”

 

Congratulations to this year’s winners!

 

BEST ACTION ADVENTURE   The Crow’s Nest / Richard Meredith

BEST COMEDY   Con Me Once / J. L. Delozier

BEST COZY   Rose by Any Other Name / Becki Willis

BEST HISTORICAL   The Lost Wisdom of the Magi / Susie Helme

BEST INVESTIGATOR    Within Plain Sight / Bruce Robert Coffin

BEST JUVENILE / Y.A.   Irish Town / Matthew John Meagher

BEST MYSTERY   Code Gray / Benny Sims

BEST NONFICTION   Words Whispered in Water / Sandy Rosenthal

BEST SCI-FI / FANTASY   Odyssey Tale / Cody Schlegel

BEST SHORT STORY COLLECTION   Couch Detective Book 2 / James Glass

BEST SUPERNATURAL   Borrowed Memories / Christine Mager Wevik

BEST SUSPENSE   Ring of Conspiracy / J. Robert Kinney

BEST THRILLER   The Divine Devils / R. Weir

 

2020 Killer Nashville Silver Falchion Awards

From the Killer Nashville site: “We believe all engaging stories have three elements: mystery, thriller, and suspense. Since 2008, the Killer Nashville Silver Falchion Awards have recognized the best stories from the previous year told through various media utilizing the elements of mystery, thriller, and/or suspense. Judges are professional writers, book reviewers, librarians, academics, and—in specialized cases—specific industry peers. Focus is on quality, not popularity.”

 

Due to the Covid19 Pandemic, the conference was cancelled for this year, but voting was conducted with the registered expected attendees. The winners were announced on August 22 and are indicated in red.

 

Best Mystery
Connie Berry A Dream of Death

Carl & Jane Bock The White Heron
Iris Chacon The Mammoth Murders
Richard Conrath Blood Moon Rising
John DeDakis Fake
Jeanine Englert Lovely Digits
Henry Hack The Marsh Mallows
Karen McCarthy Murder at the Candlelight Vigil
Jane Suen Murder Creek
June Trop The Deadliest Thief

 

Best Thriller
Brian Andrews & Jeffrey Wilson Red Specter

Simeon Courtie All Hollow
Shirley B. Garrett Deadly Obsession
James R. Hannibal The Gryphon Heist
Sue Hinkin Low Country Blood
Thomas Kelso Hyperion’s Fracture
Leslie McCauley Rise
Caroline Mitchell The Secret Child
Dana Perry The Silent Victim
Dana J. Summers Downhill Fast

 

Best Suspense
Kathryn J. Bain Fade to the Edge

R.G. Belsky Below the Fold
K.P. Gresham Murder on the Third Try
Bradley Harper Queen’s Gambit
J.E. Irvin The Strange Disappearance of Rose Stone
Kathryn Lane Revenge in Barcelona
Dianne McCartney The Daughter of Death
Kelly Oliver VIPER, A Jessica James Mystery
Dana J. Summers Downhill Fast
Claudia Turner The Scions of Atlantis

 

Best Action or Adventure
Paul A. Barra Westfarrow Island

Toni Bird Jones The Measure of Ella
Jenna Kernan Dangerous Conditions
Jim Nesbitt The Best Lousy Choice
Tj Turner Angel in the Fog

 

Best Cozy
Debra H. Goldstein Two Bites Too Many

Gemma Halliday A Sip Before Dying
Linda Lovely Bad Pick
Susan McCormick The Fog Ladies
Bonita McCoy Twisted Plots

 

Best Procedural or P.I.
Carmen Amato Russian Mojito

Mark Bergin Apprehension
Peter W.J. Hayes The Things That Are Different
Richard Helms Paid in Spades
Jean Rabe The Dead of Summer

 

Best Juvenile or Y.A.
Susan K. Flach Daughter Undisclosed

Liana Gardner Speak No Evil
James R. Hannibal The Clockwork Dragon
Kelly Oliver Kassy O’Roarke, Cub Reporter
Lori Roberts This Dark and Bloody Ground

 

Best Science Fiction, Fantasy, or Horror
Tosca Lee The Line Between

Tosca Lee A Single Light
Valerie Nieman To the Bones
Palmer Pickering Moon Deeds
Maggie Toussaint Dreamed It

 

Book of the Year
Bradley Harper Queen’s Gambit

Congratulations to all the finalists and winners!

 

Killer Nashville Silver Falchion Awards – 2019

 

 

Killer Nashville is one of the most popular conferences in the country for writers and readers and is held each year in the Nashville, Tennessee area. Established by writer and filmmaker Clay Stafford in 2006, the conference assists authors in the craft of mystery, thriller, suspense, and crime fiction writing. Stafford and American Blackguard, Inc. also work to further various literacy programs throughout the year.

 

As a part of both encouraging and rewarding writers in their varied fields, the Killer Nashville Silver Falchion Awards are given to authors and their outstanding books published in the previous year. This year, the awards will be presented on August 24th at the Killer Nashville Awards Banquet. The finalists and winners (in red) are:

 

Best Action Adventure
Baron Birtcher  “Fistful of Rain”
Linda Sands  “Precious Cargo”
Robert Slayton  “Running to Graceland”
Mary Ting  “ISAN”
Jill Wallace  “War Serenade”


Best Cozy Mystery
Traci Andrighetti  “Campari Crimson”
L.A. Chandler  “The Gold Pawn”
Phyllis Gobbell  “Treachery in Tuscany”
Morgan James  “Quiet Fury”
Jill Orr  “The Bad Break”


Best Mystery
Delphine Boswell  “Unholy Secret”
Larry Enmon  “The Burial Place”
Allan Eskens  “The Shadows We Hide”
Mike Faricy  “Star Struck”
Alexia Gordon  “Killing in C Sharp”
Bradley Harper  “A Knife in the Fog”
Roger Johns  “River of Secrets”
Ann Parker  “A Dying Note”
Keenan Powell  “Deadly Solution”
Cindy Sample  “Dying for a Deal”


Best Procedural
Bruce Robert Coffin “Beyond the Truth”
James Doherty  “An Obscure Grave”
Amanda Feyerbend  “Girls of Summer”
Margaret Mizushima  “Burning Ridge: A Timber Creek K-9 Mystery”
Saralyn Richard  “Murder in the One Percent”


Best Thriller
R.G. Belsky  “Yesterday’s News”
Timothy S. Johnston  “The War Beneath”
Thomas Kelso “Fractured”
Michael Niemann “Illegal Holdings”   (tie)
T.J. O’Conner  “The Consultant”
Rick Outzen  “City of Grudges”
Eliot Parker  “A Knife’s Edge”
Charley Pearson  “Scourge”   (tie)
Rick Pullen  “Naked Truth”
Dana J. Summers  “The Dark and the Dead”

 

Winners in other categories:

Best Sci-Fi/Fantasy/Horror
Maggie Toussaint  "Confound It"


Best Short Story/Anthology
Carmen Amato  "The Artist"

 

Please visit https://killernashville.com/2019-killer-nashville-awards-winners/?fbclid=IwAR1x_ for finalists and winners in the YA, Non-fiction, and Suspense categories.   Congratulations to all!

 

 

“43 Missing” by Carmen Amato

 

In “43 Missing,” Detective Emilia Cruz, the first woman detective in Acapulco, has been called in on a federal level case – a search for the missing bodies of 43 male college students who participated in an annual protest rally. After stealing busses from a local bus company, they were stopped by the police, handed over to a drug gang, and never seen again.


Cruz is part of a task force of five law enforcement officers hand-picked by the Attorney General’s office because of their lack of affiliation with any previous inquiries or associations with the families. Their parameters are clear: ‘Don’t gather new evidence or interview the families, but the government wants to confirm or deny the conclusions of the previous investigations and put the matter to rest.’


"43 Missing" is based on an actual 2014 case in Mexico. It garnered quite a bit of international attention and was thought at the time to be gang/drug related. Nobody, not even the Mexican government, disputed that. 


In Amato's fictional account, the families want closure. They know the boys are dead, but they have to find where the bodies were buried. It's been a year and a half and the families feel corruption is getting in the way of the truth. They don't want to point fingers or cast blame because they fear for their lives if they do speak up. In “43 Missing,” several previous investigations conducted by various agencies pointed to inadequate actions by the Mexican government, and nothing was done to either bring anyone to justice or to find the bodies.


Emilia agrees to participate because of the connection to an old, intensely personal case. She may be able to find the person, her own brother, against whom she must exact revenge. So far, she has risked everything – friends, an important relationship, her job; now maybe her life.


What is uncovered in "43 Missing" is astounding. Amato is thoroughly convincing in her version of what might have happened in real life. The two cases of the missing boys and Cruz' search for personal revenge overlap in complex and frightening ways. This is a haunting page-turner.


Amato's books are set in Mexico, with vivid images of the country's landscape and unique architecture, both old and new. She includes descriptions of the meals eaten in street-side cafes and great restaurants, reminding me how much I love Mexican food.


Taut writing ramps up the tension in “43 Missing,” as Amato deals with the issues plaguing any two countries battling the drug trade and human trafficking along their borders. The tragedy of decent members of society caught in the crossfire, stayed with me long after I finished the book. 


In real-life, the 43 bodies have yet to be found.


“43 Missing,” nominated for Killer Nashville’s Silver Falchion award, is book #6 in the Detective Emilia Cruz series. Please visit http://carmenamato.net/ for more information about Ms. Amato’s distinguished law enforcement background and the other books in the series.

 

 

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