The Dead Good Reader Awards 2018

dead good reader awards

Readers, we salute you. We asked you to vote for your favourite crime books and authors and you responded in your thousands. The winners of the Dead Good Reader Awards 2018 were crowned at the Theakston Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival in Harrogate, with Mark Lawson presiding over the ceremony.

Here are the six authors honoured with the accolade of being best in class – as voted for by you!

The Holmes and Watson Award for Best Detective Duo:

dead good reader awards 2018Winner: Ruth Galloway and Harry Nelson – Elly Griffiths

Arthur Bryant and John May – Christopher Fowler
Jane Rizzoli and Maura Isles – Tess Gerritsen
Ruth Galloway and Harry Nelson – Elly Griffiths
Marnie Rome and Noah Jake – Sarah Hilary
Rosie Strange and Sam Stone – Syd Moore
Gino Rolseth and Leo Magozzi – P J Tracy

The Whodunnit Award for the Book That Keeps You Guessing:

dead good reader awards 2018Winner: Let Me Lie by Clare Mackintosh

I Am Watching You by Teresa Driscoll
The Lucky Ones by Mark Edwards
Let Me Lie by Clare Mackintosh
Skin Deep by Liz Nugent
The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle by Stuart Turton
The Lying Game by Ruth Ware

The Cabot Cove Award for Best Small Town Mystery:

dead good reader awards 2018Winner: The Chalk Man by C J Tudor

A Murder to Die For by Stevyn Colgan
Dark Pines by Will Dean
The Devil’s Claw by Lara Dearman
Hell in a Handbasket by Denise Grover Swank
The Dry by Jane Harper
The Chalk Man by C J Tudor

The Wringer Award for the Character Who’s Been Put Through It All:

dead good reader awards 2018Winner: Jack Reacher – Lee Child

Jack Reacher – Lee Child
Frieda Klein – Nicci French
Lottie Parker – Patricia Gibney
Ruth Galloway – Elly Griffiths
Michael Devlin – Tony Kent
David Raker – Tim Weaver

The House of Horrors Award for Most Dysfunctional Family:

dead good reader awards 2018Winner: Then She Was Gone by Lisa Jewell

Little Sister by Isabel Ashdown
Blood Sisters by Jane Corry
Then She Was Gone by Lisa Jewell
Good Me, Bad Me by Ali Land
Let Me Lie by Clare Mackintosh
The Good Samaritan by John Marrs

The Dead Good Recommends Award for Most Recommended Book:

dead good reader awards 2018Winner: The Dark Angel by Elly Griffiths

I Am Watching You by Teresa Driscoll
The Dark Angel by Elly Griffiths
Killer Intent by Tony Kent
Anything You Do Say by Gillian McAllister
The Fear by C L Taylor
The Lying Game by Ruth Ware

Congratulations to all the winning authors and those shortlisted for the Dead Good Reader Awards 2018!


  1. Roz Penn says

    Mark Dawson author of the John Milton Seroes, Isabella Rose series & Beatriz Rose series are amazing thrillers. Recommend these to you.

    • Gary bishop says

      Thank you ,not read any of his work,will make a conscious effort to do so

  2. Susan Hall says

    Mark Dawson….one of the best authors around at the moment. The John Milton character is superb!

    • Diane McCarogher says

      Totally agree. Mark Dawson tops most of these. Every one is good.

  3. Linda Prange says

    It’s nice to get info on new books and special offers

  4. Linda Prange says

    I’m already signed up to dead good books, it’s nice to be kept informed of any new books

  5. Linda Prange says

    I just love the Jack Reacher books, I met Lee Childs and that’s how I imagine Jack Reacher looks

  6. Diane Wareing says

    Joseph Knox is a brilliant new author who I discovered last year with his debut novel Sirens.

  7. Stephen Drew says

    This has taken me a long time to decide upon as I have read many books over the last 20 years.

  8. Erica Beaumont says

    Love Promises Promises, Keiron writes with local knowledge to create suspense and shocks within the ultimate dysfunctional family. A newcomer on the fiction ladder with Inspector Wardle! Must read.

  9. Sue Gewanter says

    Love Elly Griffiths’ various series- Dr Ruth Galloway must of all!

    • david gilchrist says

      Some of my votes went to Elly Griffiths

  10. Eunice Connelly says

    Not exactly a horror but an excellent read,so very different I would certainly call it a thriller ,I couldn’t put it down. Give it a go… won’t be disappointed,it’s a cruel,sad,funny brilliant read.

  11. Simon says

    Murder to die for is the best book released this year

  12. Alicia Kamar says

    This story, these characters, and this author are all simply amazing.

  13. Anne fabing says

    The Confession, by Joe Spain . So many twists , it’s was like trying to untangle bine weed .
    This author knows how to keep you turning the pages.

  14. Laura Prime says

    Anything by katerina Dusmond and Caroline Mitchell can’t get enough of them

  15. Laura Prime says

    Anything by katerina Diamond and Caroline Mitchell can’t get enough of them

  16. Yolanda Skeete says

    Ruth Ware author of The Lying Game and The Woman in Cabin 10. Both excellent thrillers.

  17. Wilma McCann says

    Mark Dawson, Lee Child and L J Ross are my favourite authors. All great crime writers. Must reads.

  18. Nadeyn says

    Highly recommend Mark Edwards books! Love them all!

  19. Wayne Noble says

    Preston Oldcorn from ‘Cold Bath Street’ by AJ Hartley, wow what an opening to a book!

  20. Jasmine V says

    Mark Edwards is an amazing writer. He always keeps me guessing. I get so involved in his books that I typically finish them in one go. Can’t wait for his next book to be released!

  21. Anthony says

    Gary Dobbs is the author of 2 Frank Parade books. The first, ‘A Policeman’s Lot’, has a backdrop of The Buffalo Bill Wild West Show in 1910 Wales. The second, ‘Down Among The Dead’, published this year, takes place during The Second World War and has Parade investigating murders and escaped POWs while bombs fall on South Wales.

  22. Jacky says

    Two authors current stand out for me – Mark Edwards and Sheryl Browne, both great reads.

  23. Alison says

    Currently reading The lucky ones by Mark Edwards – can’t put it down., a real page turner. Can’t wait for his next one.

  24. M says

    Cold Bath Street is probably the best release this year!
    But I have a bias at it’s linked to the UCLan Publishing course.

  25. nick bohannon says

    WoW……… Cold Bath Street – what a read – well done A J Hartley

  26. Emma Shaw says

    I love Tim Weaver! I received I Am Missing as a gift and loved it so much I bought all his other books. His character, David Raker, is brilliant and all of his books are excellently written. I’m really looking forward to the next instalment of Raker…. X

  27. Sandy says

    I am Missing -wow, what a read. Thankyou Tim Weaver. You know when you’ve been moved by a novel. You miss the characters and plot when you’ve finished it.

  28. Mary Gallacher says

    Recently discovered the Lottie Parker series of thrillers… And they are. Keep you rivited with family drama threaded through killing spree action!

  29. Doris lee says

    Teresa driscol for me absolutely love her books very different techniques in the way she writes and the endings are totally unpredictable great stuff

  30. Christina Curfman says

    I love Mark Edwards books! They keep me guessing. You never know where the book is going to take you!!

  31. Kitty Boyle says

    Discovering Maria Hoey’s first book, The Last Lost Girl, was definitely my lucky day. It’s got it all..suspense, dysfunctional family, shocking personal discoveries…good from beginning to end. Can’t wait for the second book coming July 4th in the UK. I’ll have to wait longer for release on e books in the U.S..

  32. Helen says

    There are only two authors so far this year that have written books I have already read twice; Chris Carter (Gallery of the Dead) and Gregg Hurwitz (Hellbent). Looking forward to Pieces of Her by Karin Slaughter being released in August though!

  33. Gary Smith says

    Keep reading, The Chalk Man is just brilliant.

    • Pamela Nicholson says

      You have to try The Good Samaritan by John Marrs. A dark, twisty turny psychological thriller

  34. Stewart Pert says

    Another fantastic book from John Marrs.
    The Good Samaritan is a dark twisting read that I couldn’t put down.

  35. Michelle says

    I was hooked on Jo Nesbo this year and then I discovered Tim Weaver’s books. I really got engrossed in the David raker character. I read all of his books this year and lost a lot of sleep cuz once I started I couldn’t stop till I finished it.

  36. Andrea Geoghegan says

    Patricia Gibney. Her books are full of twists and turns and loads of personal dramas for then main character and her family.

  37. Joy Eudy says

    Lee Child’s all Jack Reacher books

  38. Carole Elmore says

    Loreth Ann White, Girl in the Moss, one of best books I have read in a long time.

  39. Tom Bell says

    Stuart MacBride. The tales of Logan McRae get better with every book. And if your stuck in between, then you can always catch up with LJ Ross and her DCI Ryan, as he tracks down his prey around the beautiful North East of England.

  40. Claudia says

    John Marrs is an excellent writer, I can’t wait for his new book!

  41. Brian Shuck says

    I think John Marrs style of story telling reads like a fast paced movie. With many moving parts, not to many I just enough. I have not come across a poor book of his yet

  42. Pamela Lewis says

    Dark Pines is the best book I’ve read all year. I love Elly Griffith’s Ruth and Nelson relationship but Bryant amd May are simply the best. So tough to make my choices!

  43. Mandy says

    Loved Teresa O’Driscolls I am watching you, can’t recommend it enough..a great Read and a page turner you won’t want to put down.

  44. Joan B says

    Teresa Driscoll is a great writer. I never saw the end coming!

  45. Anonymous says

    Tony Kent is best thriller writer! Superb!

  46. Tony Trowers says

    The best crime thriller book I have read for a long time!!!

  47. Anonymous says

    We’re a bit disappointed to not make the shortlist to be honest. We know thousands of people voted for our character (Preston Oldcorn – author A J Hartley). Was it because it was more of a ghost thriller or we were too small a publisher? Not sour, just curious – be good to have some feedback for next time.

    • Rhiannon says

      Hello! Anyone can make a Dead Good Reader Award shortlist – whether they’re an indie author, from a small press or a big publisher – provided the book fits loosely into the crime fiction or thriller genres. I’m afraid in this case it just comes down to the number of nominations, as we receive thousands and thousands every year. It was very close though, so don’t feel too disheartened!

      The Dead Good team

  48. BARRY MOON says

    Like all crime novels but C.L. Taylor , ruth ware , carol Wyer all have you on edge of your seat with the thrillers.

  49. Victoria Moore says

    I’ve read everything C.L.Taylor has published so far and there hasn’t been a book I haven’t loved, counting down the months until her next book’s released.

  50. Anonymous says

    An excellent book and very thought provoking!!
    An exviting book for mental health training.

  51. Gronkulla says

    Read Dark Pines by Will Dean If you haven’t already!

  52. victoria christian says

    I loved Killer Intent – couldn’t put it down and it was my first Thriller – can’t wait for the next in the series!

  53. Emma Duquemin says

    Gripping and beautifully written, Little Sister by Isabel Ashdown

  54. Anonymous says

    Patricia Gibney and Lottie Parker – fantastic read and I have returned to reading after many years. Gripping story.

  55. Charlotte says

    Love Isabel Ashdown’s plots, always keep me reading through the night!

  56. Tina Maree says

    So happy to have added Tim Weaver’s books to my collection…. David Raker is such an interesting and determined character.

  57. Anonymous says

    John mars is a great author with dark but enticing books and highly recommended for a good read

  58. Cotswoldlizzie says

    I Loved a murder to die for it was an utter delight to read, with unexpected twists & turns and fabulous characters. I cannot wait for the next book from Steyvn Colgan

  59. Trish Meally says

    Brilliant character. Love The Lottie Parker books by Patricia

  60. Anonymous says

    Patricia Gibney what a fantastic Author. Definately wortg a read.

  61. Jane Riekemann says

    Love the Marnie Rome series by Sarah Hilary. Marnie and Noah make a great team and are fully-fleshed out characters.

  62. Anonymous says

    It was a great read—kept me on the edge of my seat!

  63. Jean Norton says

    Have loved Elly Griffiths series of Ruth Galloway. I read them as they were published and love the mix of archaeology, Druidirm. Ruth is i character I believe in & I love the characters development across each book. I am just hooked on them and each time I finish one I can’t wait for the next one.

  64. Elizabeth Guster says

    Love Ruth and Nelson and can’t wait for the next one!

  65. Rosemary Prentice says

    Love reading crime thrillers .elly Griffiths especially

  66. V.C.Wyatt says

    Loved Tony Kent’s writing – fast paced and like watching a film

  67. Anonymous Aussie says

    Lara Dearman and Jane Harper – two brilliant authors!! Keep them on your radar!!

  68. Amelia says

    Tim Weaver’s David Raker series is amazing! He deserve to win the award. If haven’t read the series DO, you will not regret it!

  69. ILO Cox says

    Love Elly Griffiths books about Dr. Ruth Galloway & DCI Harry Nelson. These characters keep us on our toes😬

  70. Anonymous says

    The Devils Claw, by the Lara Dearman, was beautifully written for suspense and surprise. I cannot wait for the next book to be released!

  71. Liz Luke says

    Liz Nugent writes the most thrilling stories

  72. Ann Rose says

    For me Rizolli And Isles show you can be flawed but be extremely good at your job. They are so different but have the utmost respect for each other and if they are wrong say so and apologise. Not just female role models but men can also learn from them!

  73. Stephany Griffith Jones says

    Voted for excellent book Dark Angel. Loved it

  74. Maureen Doyle says

    A totally engrossing book, cleverly drawn in to the characters and feel as if I know them.

  75. Jenteach says

    CLTaylor always writes books I cannot put down and recommend her to all my friends and fellow readers. Great book on a difficult subject, The Fear.

  76. Reg Tay says

    CLTaylor must win an award for The Fear, her best book yet.

  77. Kristin says

    The Lying Game by Ruth Ware keeps you holding on to the very end! It’s nearly impossible to put any one of her books down. Truly an inspiration and amazing writer!

  78. Ruth Hicks says

    Elly Griffiths books are all brilliant.

  79. Anonymous says

    Just love Ruth’s character by Elly Griffiths

  80. Jane Kelly says

    Sirens by Joseph Knox is the best book that I have read this year.

  81. Anonymous says

    Great to see an Australian author among the nominees.

  82. Hils says

    My all time favorite books were the Butler Family trilogy by Kimberly Chambers, literally couldn’t put them down. I missed the dysfunctional Butlers when I finished!!!

  83. Penny says

    Huge fan of Claire Mackintosh, CJ Tudor & CL Taylor !! Plus many more…. so many very good books out there right now.

  84. Jenny Bromley says

    Love Clare Mackintosh. Can’t wait for her next book. Thoroughly good reads, twists at the end, excellent.

  85. Anonymous says

    Can highly recommend all Clare Mackintosh’s books – keep you in suspense to the very end.

  86. Anonymous says

    Love this writer,keeps you in suspense all his books are brilliant.

  87. Simon says

    Love Clare Macintosh’s books also the Bryant and May series is very good especially on audiobook

  88. Sarah Sherwood says

    A fantastic read as always. Thought provoking and compelling. A real page turner.

  89. Anonymous says

    Mark Edwards , just a fantastic writer.

  90. RosieB says

    Claire Mackintosh keeps the reader on the edge in all her books but Let Me Lie is certainly a breathtaking read

  91. Anonymous says

    Great read, couldnt put it down. Well written.

  92. Alfie best says

    Tony Kent unbelievable killer intent

  93. OC says

    Killer Intent by Tony Kent a page turner, exciting & gripping story! Loved it and can’t wait to see it in movie form!!!

  94. Bradley David says

    Steven Colgyn’s A Murder to Die for – twist upon twist upon twist

  95. Ijy says

    Killer Intent is an excellent book. Kept me on my toes and I really couldn’t put it down!

  96. Merrisa says

    Mark Edwards The Lucky Ones Mark is an outstanding author his books are fantastic I always know I will be up all night when reading his novels. He definitely deserves the award xx

  97. Anonymous says

    I enjoy reading and find most books very enjoyable.

  98. Faye A says

    Love Mark Edwards spine tingling thrillers! Look forward to all his book release and he’s definitely a fave!

  99. Claire says

    Mark Edwards deserves to win his books are all twisted tales and I never seem to know how thenstory is going to finish up.hes brilliant and can’t write enough fornme

  100. Claire says

    Mark Edwards deserves to win his books are all twisted tales and I never seem to know how thenstory is going to finish up.hes brilliant and can’t write enough for me

  101. Clare Byrne says

    Mark Edwards the Lucky Ones brilliant book I couldn’t put it down as with all his books they will keep you on the edge of your seat. Fantastic author I can’t wait for his next book.

  102. Steven Parkinson says

    Great read, Mark Edwards is a wonderful author

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