If you’re in search of the next best nail-biting, edge-of-your-seat, can’t-sleep-at-night crime story to read, we have a few to propose.

The Crime Writers of Canada announced the shortlist for its 2017 Arthur Ellis Awards for Excellence in Canadian Crime Writing, which Kobo joined this year as the “Best First Novel” sponsor— a great complement to its own award in support of emerging writers.

The Crime and Mystery genres are by far the most read genres by Kobo booklovers, right here in Canada, and across the globe. You might ask, why are readers obsessed with crime? 



We were wondering the same thing, and asked Emma Kenny, media psychologist, for her thoughts on the matter.

“Human beings are naturally inquisitive and whilst on the whole we would never wish to harm one another, our interest in the darker side of human nature is understandable. The voyeurism we are offered when reading crime novels is thrilling and the adrenalin rush we experience during those 'on the edge of our seat' moments is addictive on a physiological level. Great crime thrillers allow us to connect with certain characters and we are introduced to a cacophony of emotions that are so compelling due to the fact that they evoke feelings that are not common to experience. Whilst the average human being is empathic, compassionate and altruistic, experiencing the polarity of such traits through another's words offers excitement.”

We’ve kept you in suspense long enough. Without further ado, the shortlist:

Best Novel

Kelley Armstrong, City of the Lost, Penguin Random House of Canada

Michael Helm, After James, McClelland & Stewart

Maureen Jennings, Dead Ground in Between, McClelland & Stewart

Janet Kellough, Wishful Seeing, Dundurn Press

Donna Morrissey, The Fortunate Brother, Viking Canada


Best First Novel sponsored by Kobo

Ryan Aldred, Rum Luck, Five Star Publishing

R.M.Greenaway, Cold Girl, Dundurn Press

Mark Lisac, Where the Bodies Lie, NeWest Press

Amy Stuart, Still Mine, Simon & Schuster Canada

Elle Wild, Strange Things Done, Dundurn Press


Best Novella: The Lou Allin Memorial Award

Rick Blechta, Rundown, Orca Book Publishers

Brenda ChapmanNo Trace, Grass Roots Press

Jas. R. Petrin, The Devil You Know, Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine, Dell Publishing

Linda L. Richards, When Blood Lies, Orca Book Publishers

Peter Robinson, The Village That Lost Its Head, Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine, Dell Publishing


Best Short Story

Cathy Ace, Steve’s StoryThe Whole She-Bang 3, Toronto Sisters in Crime

Susan Daly, A Death at the ParsonageThe Whole She-Bang 3, Toronto Sisters in Crime

Elizabeth Hosang, Where There’s a WillThe Whole She-Bang 3, Toronto Sisters in Crime

Scott Mackay, The AscentEllery Queen’s Mystery Magazine, Dell Publishing

David Morrell, The Granite KitchenEllery Queen’s Mystery Magazine, Dell Publishing


Best Book in French

Marie-Ève Bourassa, Red Light: Adieu, Mignonne, Ville Marie (vlb éditeur)

Chrystine Brouillet, Vrai ou faux, Éditions Druide

Guillaume Morrissette, Terreur domestique, Guy Saint-Jean Éditeur

Johanne Seymour, Rinzen et l’homme perdu, Libre Expression

Richard Ste-Marie, Le Blues des sacrifiés, Éditions Alire


Best Juvenile/YA Book

Gordon Korman, Masterminds: Criminal Destiny, Harper Collins Publishers Ltd.

Nora McClintock, Trial by Fire, Orca Book Publishers

John Moss, The Girl in a Coma, The Poisoned Pencil-Poisoned Pen Press

Caroline Pignat, Shooter, Tundra Books

Eva Wiseman, Another Me, Tundra Books


Best Nonfiction Book

Christie Blatchford, Life Sentence: Stories from Four Decades of Court Reporting — or, How I Fell Out of Love with the Canadian Justice System, Doubleday Canada

Joe Friesen, The Ballad of Danny Wolfe: Life of a Modern Outlaw, Signal McClelland & Stewart

Jeremy GrimaldiA Daughter's Deadly Deception: The Jennifer Pan Story, Dundurn Press

Debra Komar, Black River Road: An Unthinkable Crime, an Unlikely Suspect, and the Question of Character, Goose Lane

Bobbi-Jean MacKinnon, Shadow of Doubt: The Trial of Dennis Oland, Goose Lane


Unhanged Arthur for Best Unpublished First Crime Novel sponsored by Dundurn Press

Mary Fernando, An Absence of Empathy

S.J. Jennings, The Golkonda Project

Charlotte Morganti, Concrete Becomes Her

Ann Shortell, Celtic Knot

Mark Thomas, The Last Dragon


Winners will be announced on May 25. Stay tuned!

To find out more about the Crime Writers of Canada: http://www.crimewriterscanada.com/


#OpenUpKobo #ArthurEllisAwards