Cumbrian Crime Writers Night
Kirkgate Arts & The New Bookshop present an evening with Mike Craven, Paula Daly and Martin Edwards, in conversation about their diverse approaches to crime writing. Hosted by novelist Ruth Sutton.
The work of our panelists ranges from classic English mysteries, through hard-bitten police procedural, to contemporary psychological thrillers. But all have a set a substantial part of their output in Cumbria.
M.W. Craven was born in Carlisle but grew up in Newcastle, running away to join the army at the tender age of sixteen. He spent the next ten years travelling the world having fun, leaving in 1995 to complete a degree in social work with specialisms in criminology and substance misuse. Thirty-one years after leaving Cumbria, he returned to take up a probation officer position in Whitehaven, eventually working his way up to chief officer grade. Sixteen years later he took the plunge, accepted redundancy and became a full-time author. He now has entirely different motivations for trying to get inside the minds of criminals . . .
The Puppet Show, the first in a two-book deal he signed with the Little, Brown imprint, Constable, in 2017, was released to critical acclaim in hardback in 2018. It has been sold in numerous foreign territories and the production company Studio Lambert, creators of the award-winning Three Girls, have optioned it for TV. The sequel, Black Summer, follows in June 2019.
Mike’s series featuring DI Avison Fluke and his colleagues from the Cumbrian Force Major Incident Team, includes the novels Born in a Burial Gown (shortlisted for the Crime Writers’ Association Debut Dagger Award) and Bodybreaker and the collection of short stories Assume Nothing, Believe Nobody, Challenge Everything.
Paula Daly is the acclaimed author of five novels. Her work has been sold in fifteen countries, shortlisted for CWA Gold Dagger Crime Novel of the Year award and her books are currently being developed into the ITV drama – Deep Water – set to air in summer 2019. She was born in Lancashire and lives in the Lake District with her husband, three children, and whippet Skippy.
Martin Edwards’ latest novel is Gallows Court, a thriller set in 1930. He was awarded the CWA Dagger in the Library in 2018 for his body of work. He is President of the Detection Club, consultant to the British Library’s Crime Classics series, and author of sixteen contemporary whodunits, including The Coffin Trail, shortlisted for the Theakston’s Prize for best crime novel of the year, which was the first of seven (so far!) Lake District Mysteries. The Arsenic Labyrinth was shortlisted for Lakeland Book of the Year. The Golden Age of Murder won the Edgar, Agatha, H.R.F. Keating and Macavity awards, while The Story of Classic Crime in 100 Books also won the Macavity and was nominated for four other awards. Martin has also received the CWA Short Story Dagger, the CWA Margery Allingham Prize, and the Poirot award for his contribution to the crime genre.
Ruth Sutton’s Cumbria trilogy Between the Mountains and the Sea comprises A Good Liar, Forgiven and Fallout. The books follow the life and loves of Jessie Whelan, a teacher in West Cumberland.
In November 2015, Ruth turned to crime fiction with Cruel Tide, and not long afterwards readers started clamouring for the sequel. Fatal Reckoning picks up the story two years on, in 1971, adds another twist and brings back the two young investigators, journalist Judith Pharaoh and DC Sam Tognarelli to try to finish what they started. Ruth’s latest crime novel, Burning Secrets, is set in West Cumbria, during the chaos of the 2001 Foot and Mouth outbreak.