‘Tale’ author’s latest mystery up for Agatha

By Ben BeagleBooks
April 7, 2007
bbeagle@batavianews.com

Past “Tale for Three Counties” author Julia Spencer-Fleming finds her latest book, All Mortal Flesh , on the shortlist for a pair of awards.

The mystery is nominated for best novel by the Agatha awards, which honors the year’s best traditional mystery writing, and for best mystery in Mystery Ink’s The Gumshoe Awards, which recognize the year’s best achievements in crime fiction.

The Agathas, named for famed mystery writer Agatha Christie, have been given since 1988 by Malic Domestic to books that best typify the works of the English novelist. The genre is loosely defined as mysteries which contain no explicit sex or excessive force or violence, and usually feature an amateur detective, a confined setting and characters who know one another.

Nominated alongside All Mortal Flesh are Messenger of Truth by Jacqueline Winspear, The Saddlemaker’s Wife by Earlene Fowler, The Virgin of Small Plains by Nancy Pickard and Why Casey Had to Die by L.C. Hayden.

The nominees are chosen by fan votes. Winners will be chosen and announced at the Malice Domestic convention in early May.

Spencer-Fleming is a former Agatha winner, having won in 2002 for “Best First Novel” for In the Bleak Midwinter , which introduced amateur sleuth the Rev. Clare Fergusson – a former Army helicopter pilot -and police chief Russ Van Alstyne.

Mystery Ink Is a popular online destination for readers of mysteries and thrillers.

Also nominated for best mystery are White Shadow by Ace Atkins, City of Shadows by Ariana Franklin, The Night Gardener by George Pelecanos and Hollywood Station by Joseph Wambaugh.

The Gumshoe Awards are chosen each year from books published for the first time in the United States. The winners will be announced May 1.

Spencer-Fleming has written five books featuring Fergusson, with the sixth expected in early fall or late winter.

All Mortal Flesh ended with Fergusson and Van Alstyne finding their relationship at a crossroads, with Fergusson questioning her future in the priesthood.

On the Net:

Agatha Awards Web site: www.malicedomestic.org/agatha.htm

Gumshoe Awards Web site: www.mysteryinkonline.com/2007/03/2007_gumshoe_aw.html
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Courtesy of Batavia Newspapers Corporation

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