CrimeScene returns with a bang, February 2 & 3!

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Please join us for a ticketed Killer Cocktail Party from 6 to 7:30pm — come and mingle with the authors! Two drink tickets and hors d’oeuvres await – it’s gonna be killer!

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We’re featuring 4 Author Panels — come have your books signed! We’ll be welcoming Thomas Mullen, Katy Munger, Kevin Powers, Rebecca Renner, and Wendall Thomas along with Edgar Award winner Joe R. Lansdale as guest of honor.

The Beltie Mystery Prize will be awarded in the afternoon. See below for details!

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Pete Mock’s 7th Annual Beltie Mystery Prize

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McIntyre’s book buyer and mystery aficionado selects the best mystery, thriller, noir, procedural, or true crime novel of the year.

“As the year slowly wanes, the days darken early, and arctic chills cover the land and cause us to huddle inside around the fireplace, what a better time than now to share the nominees for the 2024 Beltie Prize that we at McIntyre’s award to the best mystery of the past year. We’ve been doing this since 2018 and like every year it’s tough to narrow all the titles that are deserving down to just eight. Night after night, tossing and turning, arguing the merits and demerits, slowly the field is narrowed and themes revealed. This year social and cultural issues dominate as our authors channel their inner Dickens in fewer pages and elucidate quite eloquently the supposed dichotomy between what has seemingly become us vs. them, which is what the mystery genre is so very good at doing. But the list is not just that. Like all past years, there is something for everyone here, and like every year, we offer up the Beltie in the hope that you, the reader, find something new, something different, and most of all, that you will discover new authors you can then read for years to come.

Now, onto the list!”  — Pete

Pete’s 2024 Hit List

  • Joshua Moehling, Where the Dead Sleep 

  • Nina Simon, Mother-Daughter Murder Night

  • David Joy, Those We Thought We Knew

  • Colin Walsh, Kala

  • Kevin Powers, A Line in the Sand

  • Rupert Holmes, Murder Your Employer

  • Ausma Zehanat Khan, Blood Betrayal

  • Michael Bennett, Better the Blood


Want to read them all yourself? Or gift them along? Click below, friends.

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Killer Winners from Years Past

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Judge & Jury

What is the Beltie Mystery Prize you might ask?
It’s an award given to the best mystery book of the year as chosen by Pete Mock, our Mystery Guru. We announce the finalists every fall, with the Beltie Prize Winner announcement at the end of the year. Want to read up on this year’s nominees and all the past winners and nominees (it’s a mighty fine bunch of mysteries, we can assure you)? You can find them all here. We thought that given his prestigious status as Guru you might like to know a bit more about him. Read on for an introduction.

Tell us about how you keep track of the 100 mysteries you read each year?
I don’t really keep a log. For The Beltie Prize I do keep what I call my super long list which is any book that stood out for me and which I consider when it comes time to whittle things down to the final eight. This past year I had 37 titles on that list.

That’s a lot of reading! Where do they grow readers like this?
Born in Vermont, grew up in New Hampshire, have lived in Chapel Hill since the 9th grade.

When did you first discover you loved to read?
I’ve been a reader since at least five years old. I remember reading Charlotte’s Web to my siblings when I was six.

Who are your favorite all-time writers?
Mystery-wise, James Lee Burke (one of the best writer’s in this country bar none), Jo Nesbo, and Mo Hayder. My favorite mystery ever is probably is Go With Me by Castle Freeman. Great plot, spot-on dialogue, and an ending that made me smile. Other than mysteries: Gabriel Garcia Marquez, historian Russell Shorto, Robert Penn Warren for All the King’s Men.

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Why are you drawn to mysteries/suspense?
I love the suspense and intrigue. I grew up reading my dad’s books and he was always getting Robert Ludlum, Fredrick Forsyth, Ken Follett and I’ve never stopped. Instead of television, I relax with a good mystery/thriller.