Three novels published by Faber, an e-book success and last year's winner, Rory Clements, are all on the shortlist for this year's Crime Writers' Association Ellis Peters Historical Award.
Rory Clements, who won last year for Revenger, is in the running again this year with Prince, the third book in his John Shakespeare series (John Murray). The shortlist is also made up of Faber's The Red Coffin by Sam Eastland; The Somme Stations by Andrew Martin (Faber); and The Cleansing Flames by R N Morris.
Island of Bones by Imogen Robertson (Headline), and Gordon Ferris' The Hanging Shed (Corvus), which had much success as a digital download before it was released as a physical copy, also feature on the six-strong list.
The judging panel comprises chair Eileen Roberts, orginator and organiser of St Hilda's annual crime symposium in Oxford; Geoffrey Bailey, a bookseller crime-specialist; Barry Forshaw, editor of Crime Time; Sir Bernard Ingham, press secretary to prime minister Margaret Thatcher; and Jake Kerridge, the Daily Telegraph's crime fiction critic.
The award, which is given to the best historical crime novel by any author of any nationality, is sponsored by the estate of Ellis Peters, Headline and Little, Brown Book Group.
The winner of the £3,000 prize will be announced on 30th November at the Athenaeum in London.