Hachette has scooped five nominations for the McIlvanney Prize Scottish crime book of the year, with HarperCollins securing three nods.
Author Liam McIlvanney has also been longlisted for the prize two years after it was renamed in honour of his father, William McIlvanney, credited with establishing the tradition of Scottish detective fiction.
McIlvanney is one of the HarperCollins-listed writers on the 12-strong longlist, with The Quaker. Fellow publisher stablemates include Helen Fields for Perfect Death and The Man Between by Charles Cumming.
Hachette features strongly with five longlisted books: Chris Brookmyre’s Places in the Darkness (Little, Brown), Presumed Dead (Orion) by Mason Cross, James Oswald’s No Time to Cry (Headline) and Andrew Reid’s The Hunter (Headline). Bookouture also features, with Now She’s Gone by Alison James.
Lin Anderson's Follow the Dead (Macmillan) joins the nominations alongside Penguin Random House’s sole contender: The Loch of the Dead (Michael Joseph) by Oscar De Muriel. Simon & Schuster UK’s offering is Craig Robertson’s The Photographer.
Meanwhile, flying the flag for independent publishers is Severn House with The Suffering of Strangers by Caro Ramsay.
The longlist features an “intriguing mix of previous winners, established crime writing luminaries, some emerging talent and a debut” according to a prize spokesperson. The award recognises excellence in Scottish crime writing, includes a prize of £1,000 and nationwide promotion in Waterstones.
The judges for the next round were revealed in April with Craig Sisterson and crime fiction fan Susan Calman both joining for a second year, while crime reviewer, Alison Flood, will also sit on the panel.
"Forty-one years ago, William McIlvanney rocked the British literary world with Laidlaw, a gritty and socially conscious crime novel that brought Glasgow to life more vividly than anything before," Sisterson said. "This year's longlistees for the McIlvanney Prize demonstrate how modern Scottish crime writing has flourished from those seeds.
"From debutants to authors with more than 20 books, spy thrillers to long-running detective series, 19th century mysteries to futuristic space station noir, there's an amazing range of talent on show."
The finalists will be revealed at the beginning of September and the winner announced at the Church of the Holy Rude in Stirling and followed by a torchlight procession on 21st September as part of the Bloody Scotland festival.The procession will be led by the winner accompanied by last year’s winner Denise Mina - who won for The Long Drop (Harvill Secker) - and crime author Val McDermid to the Albert Halls. Tickets to the opening ceremony and the torchlight procession are available now.
Bloody Scotland is Scotland’s International Crime Writing Festival, showcasing “the best crime writing from Scotland and the world”, established by a group of Scottish crime writers in 2012.
For more information, visit bloodyscotland.com/events.