Coming soon… Reprint of the Year Awards

Normally in December I, like other bloggers, would do a post rounding up my year’s reading, picking out the best books I had read during 2018. However I decided this year do something a little extra, with the help of a few blogging buddies and you my dear readers of course, (you can’t get out of audience participation.) The number of publishers reprinting vintage mysteries is on the increase, meaning us lucky fans are getting access to more and more of the books and authors we want to try. With so many novels and short story collections on offer, it can be hard to pick out the very best, which is where the Reprint of the Year Awards come in. Before you begin to imagine the swank of the Oscars, with beautiful dresses, smart tuxedos and red carpets, let me bring you back down to earth as to how the more humble Reprint of the Year Awards is going to work…

The awards will unfold in four stages…

8th December

Next Saturday me and 9 other bloggers, (Aidan, Bev, Brad, Curtis, Daniel, JJ, John, Moira and the Puzzle Doctor), will begin by sharing one of our nominations for the award, putting forward our reasons for why you should vote for our nominee. This title has to be a reprint published this year and not a title released for the first time. We’ve not been draconian about setting a time period for the original publication dates, but in the main our choices unsurprisingly focus more on pre-1960s texts.

15th December

On the following Saturday we will reveal our second choices.

22nd December

On this day I will set up a poll for this award, listing the 18 titles me and my fellow bloggers have chosen, as well as 2 readers’ choices (more on that later). At this stage you will then be able to vote for your favoured titles.

29th December

As the year draws to a close I will reveal the results of the poll, announcing the title which has won the accolade of Reprint of the Year!

If you’ve been reading carefully you will have noticed that I have mentioned that the poll will include two texts which are chosen by you guys. So if there is a mystery reprint which has been released this year, which you’ve loved put it the comments section below this post. If someone has already mentioned a title you love, then please do still second it or repeat it, as I will be selecting the two readers choices using one of two ways: Method 1 will be selecting the two titles which have the most mentions in the comments below and Method 2 is using a random generator, which I will use if votes for nominations are tied.

Any questions or queries let me know and of course may the best book win!

….right I best get cracking on next week’s post. Just got to make my mind up which two books to pick…. (Sure my blogging colleagues are far more prepared than I am).


      • Well, Malice Aforethought was just reissued, and by Dover too, a cherished publisher amongst collectors, so that would be hard to beat, but it might not be in the spirit of the award, being so famous (amongst those in our little coterie). I am thinking the award is more for something like the Farjeon, who was dragged from obscurity to briefly outsell Steven King.

        If you are looking at authors not single books then for me the winner is Patrick Quentin.

        As for a name, I do like The Farjeon. Phoenix is cliched. A case could be made for The Penzler!

        Eeyore predicts at least 4 of you will nominate a Crofts — or perhaps a Bradshaw’s Guide. 😈


  1. Great idea! I am looking forward to this. I would like to mention The Invisible Weapons and Mystery at Olympia by John Rhode but I suspect that atleast one of them would be Puzzle Doctor’s choice.

    The Threefold Cord by Francis Vivian and Puzzle for Fools by Patrick Quentin are also good nominees.

    And I disagree with Ken above. Patrick Quentin is/are wonderful author(s) but I think Christopher Bush trumps him/them. My favourites so far are The Missing Minutes and The Kidnapped Colonel.

    By the way, does any Crofts title qualify? I don’t think any of his books has been reprinted this year.

    Liked by 1 person

    • If none have been reprinted this year then unfortunately no, as the awards are just looking at 2018 publications. Thanks for all your good choices. Some of them have been nabbed by my fellow bloggers already – but you’ll just have to wait and see which ones!


  2. I have to agree with Patrick Quentin, though it’s almost impossible to choose a single title with so many rarities being released.

    Murder Isn’t Easy by Richard Hull would be my second choice. A great year for this author as well!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes I thought about that one too. Definitely a worthy contender.
      An old favorite is Verdict of Twelve by Postgate, which I think is also eligible.

      I have yet to read a Bush, so I guess I need to get around to it soon. I confess to being a bit dubious due to the enthusiasm for humdrum amongst his boosters! Kate and I seem to be the only Crofts skeptics left.

      How do we actually nominate? I want to toss out ideas and see others’ ideas first.

      Liked by 1 person

      • You just nominate by leaving comments to this post. However I won’t be selecting the two reader nomination until just before I set up the poll so if in the next week or two you decide on some definite suggestions, which are eligible, you can always put a note to that effect in a comment. I thought Postgate was reprinted last year?


  3. I’m planning to post soon about the Maigrets reprinted in 2018 by Penguin with new translations. Haven’t read all but among the ones I’ve read there’re some of the best books I’ve read this year. Wonder if they will qualify.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. A question on dates. The British Library reprints, as a general rule, are published in the US 3-6 months after their UK publication dates, clearly stated on the covers of the ARCs I receive.. As a blogger living in the US, I observe publishers’ embargos, so, for me, a novel that might have been reprinted in the UK in November 1917 won’t have been released in the US until February of 2018. That’s likely to affect my choices – so I need to know how you want to handle eligibility rules.


      • A US reader absolutely can obtain and read a book first published in the UK if willing to purchase the book directly from a UK website. (This is only true for physical books, not digital books which have all those DRM rules and regulations that prevent them from being sold overseas.) I do that all the time. For years I loathed the design of the US editions of the Bryant & May books by Christopher Fowler and would only buy the UK editions. I was eager to read them ASAP so I always pre-ordered from when they appeared on their website. Nowadays Book Depository is the best place to order UK published books because of their policy of free shipping to all approved destinations. Lately, however, it’s been taking up to four weeks to get a new book from them to Chicago.


    • You make a good point Les. I hadn’t thought about that. With certain imprints such as the DSP or Coachwhip this is less likely to be a problem, being American companies, but I appreciate with publishers such as BL and Harper Collins this could get trickier. In those sorts of cases I think Ken’s suggestion of using the jurisdiction of the nominator seems fair enough and in the final I can always put in bracket – (US 2018), to prevent non-US reader confusion.


  5. Hello, arriving rather late at this interesting event, I wonder if I can offer a set of Joan Aiken re-prints that came out at Bello Macmillan this year? They may not qualify being mostly EBook only, and also as they originally appeared in the 60’s and 70’s may be later than your other selections, but could well appeal to your readers nonetheless. Joan Aiken was a firm crime fan and a member of the CWA. Her earlier adult novels (brought back by Orion’s Murder Room a few years back) are more Gothic in style, but this year’s reprints are definitely murder mysteries, and will keep the reader on the edge of their seat! Can I recommend The Butterfly Picnic with a heroine who models herself on Dickens own mystery heroine, Esther from Bleak House, and becomes involved with an international criminal outfit and the wickedest man on a Greek Island….
    More from Bello:
    or at the sign of the poison bottle on

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Thanks for your welcome! Joan Aiken is better known for her children’s books, The Wolves of Willoughby Chase and series, but also wrote over a dozen thrillers, and six fairly thrilling Austen ‘Entertainments’ for adults, all of which I have been bringing back into print.

    I’m always happy to discover other writer/reader Bloggers to exchange thoughts. I look forward to reading your results!

    Liked by 1 person

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