This week, CRIMEFEST announced the shortlist for the 2022 awards. One of Europe’s leading crime writing conventions, the CrimeFest Awards are now in its 15th year and will be looking to celebrate the best crime books released in the UK in 2021. The convention is hosted in Bristol and is one of the biggest crime fiction events in Europe but sadly had to be postponed in 2020 and 2021 due to Covid restrictions. Over four days the convention has around 60 different panel events and 150 authors in attendance. 

There are seven different award categories including the Specsavers Debut Crime Novel Award and the Audible Sounds of Crime Award. A panel of leading British crime fiction reviewers and reviewers of fiction for children and young adults as well as members of the School Library Association (SLA) for the CrimeFest judging panels except for the Audible Sounds awards, the shortlist and winning title is established by Audible listeners. Each category winner will receive a Bristol Blue Glass commemorative award, the winner of the hotly-contested Specsavers Debut Crime Novel will also receive £1,000 prize and the winning author and audiobook readers of the Audible Sounds of Crime Award share a £1,000 prize. Celebrating crime writing in all formats, there are also awards for best crime fiction ebook (the eDunnit Award), humorous crime novel (the Last Laugh Award), the best crime novel for children with a seperate award for Young Adult titles and the best biographical or critical book related to crime fiction (the H.R.F Keating Award, named after one of Britain's most esteemed crime novelists, reviewers and writer). The Awards will be presented on the 14th May 2022 at a convention Gala Awards Dinner. 

Among this year’s shortlisted authors are Andrew Taylor, Antti Tuomainen, Abigail Dean, Michael Connelly, Paula Hawkins, Lisa Jewell, Anthony Horowitz, Richard Osman and Karin Slaughter. Abigail Dean’s debut Girl A was described as “beautifully compelling” and “thought -provoking” by Liz Robinson, our LoveReading Expert Reviewer and we see Dean nominated for three of the awards: the Specsavers Crime Fiction Debut, Audible hounds of Crime and the eDunnit. Of course, in recent year’s Richard Osman’s Thursday Murder Club series has taken the reading world by storm and Osman is shortlisted alongside the audiobook reader Lesley Manville for the second title in this hit series, The Man Who Died Twice

Adrian Muller, Co-host of CRIMEFEST, said: “After two years of hosting our awards online due to Covid restrictions, we’re thrilled we will be announcing and celebrating the winners of 2022’s CrimeFest Awards in person at our convention in Bristol in May. These shortlists show how valuable books have been to all ages, particularly in times of isolation, as sources of escapism, entertainment and enrichment. We’d like to thank Audible and Specsavers for their on-going support of these awards.”

The full shortlist for each award is below. Let us know in the comments which title you would like to win.

Specsavers Crime Fiction Debut Award

Abigail Dean for Girl A (HarperCollins)

Janice Hallett for The Appeal (Viper)

Saima Mir for The Khan (Point Blank)

Rahul Raina for How to Kidnap the Rich (Abacus)

Lara Thompson for One Night, New York (Virago)

David Heska Wanbli Weiden for Winter Counts (Simon & Schuster)

Audible Sounds of Crime Award

Lee and Andrew Child for Better Off Dead, reader Jeff Harding (Penguin Random House Audio)

Abigail Dean for Girl A, reader Holliday Grainger (HarperFiction)

Paula Hawkins for Slow Fire Burning, reader Rosamund Pike (Penguin Random House Audio)

Lisa Jewell for The Night She Disappeared, reader Joanna Froggatt (Penguin Random House Audio)

Liane Moriarty for Apples Never Fall, reader Caroline Lee (Penguin Random House Audio)

Richard Osman for The Man Who Died Twice, reader Lesley Manville (Penguin Random House Audio)

 K.L. Slater for The Marriage, reader Lucy Price-Lewis (Audible Studios / Bookouture)

Karin Slaughter for False Witness, reader Kathleen Early (HarperCollins)

The eDunnit Award

Megan Abbott for The Turnout (Virago)

Gianrico Carofiglio for The Measure of Time (Bitter Lemon Press)

Michael Connelly for The Dark Hours (Orion Fiction)

Abigail Dean for Girl A (HarperCollins)

Cath Staincliffe for Running Out of Road (Constable)

 Andrew Taylor for The Royal Secret (HarperCollins)

H.R.F. Keating Award

Lucy Andrews & Samuel Saunders (editors) for The Detective’s Companion in Crime Fiction: A Study in Sidekicks (Palgrave Macmillan)

Richard Bradford for Devils, Lusts and Strange Desires: The Life of Patricia Highsmith (Bloomsbury Caravel)

James Fleming (editor) for Bond Behind the Iron Curtain (The Book Collector)

Patricia Highsmith (edited by Anna von Planta) for Patricia Highsmith: Her Diaries and Notebooks (Weidenfeld & Nicolson)

Carla Valentine for Murder Isn’t Easy: The Forensics of Agatha Christie (Little, Brown Book Group)

Stephen James Walker for Hank Janson Under Cover (Telos Publishing Ltd)

Last Laugh Award

Simon Brett for An Untidy Death (Severn House)

Andrea Camilleri for Riccardino (Mantle)

Christopher Fowler for Bryant & May: London Bridge is Falling Down (Doubleday)

Janice Hallett for The Appeal (Viper)

Mick Herron for Slough House (Baskerville)

Antti Tuomainen for The Rabbit Factor (Orenda Books)

Best Crime Novel for Children (aged 8-12)

Frank Cottrell-Boyce for Noah’s Gold (Macmillan Children’s Books)

Maz Evans for VI Spy: Licence to Chill (Chicken House)

Anthony Horowitz for Nightshade (Walker Books)

Anthony Kessel for The Five Clues (Crown House Publishing)

Jennifer Killick for Crater Lake Evolution (Firefly Press)

M.G. Leonard for Twitch (Walker Books)

Alexandra Page (illustrator: Penny Neville-Lee) for Wishyouwas (Bloomsbury Publishing Plc)

Ella Risbridger for The Secret Detectives (Nosy Crow)

Best Crime Novel for Young Adults

Faridah Àbíké-Íyímídé for Ace of Spades (Usborne Publishing)

Angeline Boulley for Firekeeper’s Daughter (Rock the Boat)

Andreina Cordani for The Girl Who… (Atom)

William Hussey for The Outrage (Usborne Publishing)

Holly Jackson for As Good As Dead (Electric Monkey)

Patrice Lawrence for Splinters of Sunshine (Hodder Children’s Books)

Jonathan Stroud for The Outlaws of Scarlett & Browne (Walker Books)

C.L. Taylor for The Island (HQ)

For more information, click here to head to