Wednesday, November 5, 2014


Regular readers of my Blog know that I usually provide posts about books that have won awards. Such as the Edgar, Rita, Agatha and others. This one is about the Daphne du Maurier Awards given out at the annual RWA Conference by the Mystery/Suspense chapter, affectionately known as KOD or Kiss of Death.

It gives me great pleasure to announce this year’s winners, in six categories, plus an Overall Winner.

1. Series Romantic Mystery/Suspense finalists were:
Loreth Ann White for GUARDING THE PRINCESS, Harlequin Intrigue
Paula Graves for MURDER IN THE SMOKIES, Harlequin Intrigue
Paula Graves for SMOKY RIDGE CURSE, Harlequin Intrigue
Rebecca Zanetti for UNDER THE COVERS, Entangled Publishing

And the winner was Gail Barrett for A KISS TO DIE FOR, by Harlequin Romantic suspense

2. Historical Romantic Mystery/Suspense finalists were:
Jeannie Lin for THE LOTUS PALACE, Harlequin HQN
Katy Madison for LORD COLERAINE’S SCANDALOUS OFFER, Katy Madison Pub.
Erica Monroe for A DANGEROUS INVITATION, Quillfire Press
Christine Trent for LADY OF ASHES, Kensington Pub.

And the winner is Linda Lappin for SIGNATURES IN STONE, Caravel Books

3. Inspirational Romantic Mystery/Suspense finalists were:
Robin Caroll for STRAND OF DECEPTION, B & H Publishing
Debbie Guisti for THE GENERAL’S SECRETARY, Harlequin Love Inspired
Irene Hannon for TRAPPED, Revell Books
Susan Sleerman for NO WAY OUT, Harlequin Love Inspired

And the winner is Dani Pettrey for STRANDED, Bethany House

4. Paranormal (Futuristic) Romantic Mystery/Suspense finalists:
  Tamara Hogan for TEMPT ME, via Amazon
Mina Khan for WILDFIRE, Rashda Khan via Amazon
Daniellle Monsch for STONE GUARDIAN, Romantic Geek Pub.    
Jana Oliver for TANGLED SOULS, Nevermore, Atheneum, Simon & Schuster
Rebecca Zanetti for SHADOWED, eKensington

And the winner is Angie Fox for MY BIG FAT DEMON SLAYER WEDDING, Angie Fox Pub

5. Single Title Romantic Suspense finalists were:
Toni Anderson for HER LAST CHANCE, via Amazon
Kaylea Cross for IGNITED, Kaylea Cross Pub. via Amazon
B. J. Daniels for FORSAKEN, Harlequin HQN
Melinda Leigh for MIDNIGHT SACRIFICE, Montlake Romance

And the winner is Kendra Elliott for BURIED, Montlake Romance

6.  Mainstream Mystery/Suspense finalists were:
Gretchen Archer for DOUBLE WHAMMY, Henery Press
Allison Brennan for COLD SNAP, Minotaur, Macmillan
Rosie Genova for MURDER AND MARINARA, NAL, Penguin
Diane Hester for RUN TO ME, Random House, Australia

And the winner is Hank Phillippi Ryan for THE WRONG GIRL, Forge, Macmillan

And the Overall Daphne winner is Linda Lappin for SIGNATURES IN STONE, the winner of the Historical category.

What a difference two years make. Although some books published in 2011 received nominations and four of the 31 finalists were self-published books, this year’s 2013 finalists included many small press or self-published books, plus the Overall Winner.

Previously, Harlequin dominated the categories of Inspirational and Series, but this year they had to share awards with B&H, Bethany House, Revell and Entangled. Harlequin had six finalists (one winner), Kensington also had two finalists (no winners), and of the Big Five publishers, Macmillan had two finalists (one winner) and Random House Australia had one finalist (no winners). Half of the six winners were either self-published or Montlake (Amazon’s imprint) published. Which were most represented among finalists and winners? Small presses and self-published books had 18. The BPH, including Harlequin, had only 13.  The tide has indeed turned. Congratulations to all.

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