@BloodyScotland: Press Release – Five Finalists for McIlvanney Prize Announced! @valmcdermid @TheCraigRussell @DameDeniseMina @CraigRobertson @JayStringer

Woohoo!  Super excited to share with you all the FIVE FINALISTS for the McIlvanney Prize 2017!


Winner to be presented at Opening Reception of Bloody Scotland International Crime Writing Festival at Stirling Castle on Friday 8 September

A panel of judges including comedian and crime fan Susan Calman, writer Craig Sisterson and Programmer of Granite Noir, Lee Randall, today reveal the five finalists for The McIlvanney Prize from a twelve strong longlist featuring some of the best names in Scottish crime fiction.

The finalists include two of the best-known women in Scottish crime – Val McDermid and Denise Mina; a former winner of the prize, Craig Russell; one of the founders of Bloody Scotland, Craig Robertson and a relative unknown, Jay Stringer.

The winner of the Scottish Crime Book of the Year will be awarded The McIlvanney Prize in memory of William McIlvanney at the opening reception at Stirling Castle on Friday 8 September (6.30-8.30pm) and followed by a torchlight procession – open to the public – led by Ian Rankin on his way down to his event celebrating 30 years of Rebus. The award recognises excellence in Scottish crime writing, includes a prize of £1000 and nationwide promotion in Waterstones.

The judges explained why each book made the final five:

Val McDermid – Out of Bounds (Little, Brown)

‘The Queen of Scottish crime adds yet more jewels to her crown with Out of Bounds and shows us why she’s writing at the very top of her game…Karen Pirie is one of the most engaging and charismatic of all the fictional Scottish Detectives’

Denise Mina – The Long Drop (Random House)

‘This elegantly written novel confirms Denise Mina’s stature among the great Scottish crime writers…The Long Drop transports you to the pubs, grubby back alleys and courtrooms at the heart of this unsavoury chapter of Scottish history’

Craig Russell – The Quiet Death of Thomas Quaid (Quercus)

‘The Quiet Death of Thomas Quaid is an assured riff on a classic noir caper which reveals Glasgow in all its gritty and compelling glory…The writing is as stylish as Lennox’s bespoke suits’

Craig Robertson – Murderabilia (Simon & Schuster)

‘An intriguing premise in a contemporary setting which tiptoes along the darker edges of crime fiction with an unusual detective at its heart…Murderabilia is a terrific addition to this inventive series’

Jay Stringer – How to Kill Friends and Implicate People (Thomas & Mercer)

‘This unexpected and explosive novel proves that Jay Stringer has reached the major league of Scottish crime fiction…The prose in How to Kill Friends and Implicate People crackles like a roaring campfire and you find yourself rooting for the unlikeliest of heroes’

Lee Randall, chair of the judges said:

‘It’s always an honour to judge the prize and this year I especially enjoyed encountering writers whose work was new to me’

Susan Calman said:

‘As a long term reader of Scottish crime books it has been a dream come true to judge this year’s McIlvanney Prize’

Craig Sisterson said:

‘Reading the books for the prize has been a pleasure and a privilege, and has convinced me that Tartan Noir is a sparkling gem on the global crime-writing stage’

Previous winners are Chris Brookmyre with Black Widow 2016, Craig Russell with The Ghosts of Altona in 2015, Peter May with Entry Island in 2014, Malcolm Mackay with How A Gunman Says Goodbye in 2013 and Charles Cumming with A Foreign Country in 2012. The 2017 winner will be kept under wraps until the ceremony itself.

All five authors will be at the presentation and available for interview. If you would like to talk to any of the finalists, the Director of Bloody Scotland Bob McDevitt or chair of the judges, Lee Randall please contact fiona@brownleedonald.com 07767 431 846.
NOTE: Susan Calman is not available for interview. Any requests should be directed to the BBC PR for Strictly Come Dancing or her agent, Vivienne Clore

Download pictures here: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/brx1d4q26bnacpd/AAC_rdEWjNBxlB0w8Ptu_jMBa?dl=0

View the programme here: 



A Bloody Scotland book of short stories will be published by HES and launched on the opening night of the festival. Six of the twelve authors featured in the book have been longlisted for this years McIlvanney Prize. Historic Environment Scotland (HES) is the lead public body charged with caring for, protecting and promoting the historic environment.

Lin Anderson, Chris Brookmyre, Ann Cleeves, Val McDermid, Denise Mina, Craig Robertson appear in the Bloody Scotland book and were longlisted for the McIlvanney Prize 2017. Three of them have also made the final cut.


Press passes will be issued to journalists with appropriate accreditation. Bloggers please bring proof of number of followers. Please report to the press office in the Golden Lion on arrival – open 1-5pm Friday, 10-5pm Saturday and 10-5pm Sunday. However please note that Ann Cleeves with Douglas Henshall at the Albert Halls and the Cabaret at the Curly Coo have both sold out. The charge for tickets at the opening reception at the Castle only covers our costs so I’m afraid that we can’t offer free tickets however we would still love you to join us for what is going to be a unique start to the Festival.

Tickets are on sale to the public from www.bloodyscotland.com or at the Box Office in the Tolbooth Stirling or in the Albert Halls. Free standby tickets are available to the unemployed or those on a low income on the day of the event if there is good availability. Proof of eligibility is required and tickets are limited to one person. A 10% discount is available to people residing in the Stirling Council area. You must give your address at the time of booking. Visit www.bloodyscotland.com/localdiscount for details

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