Malice Domestic 2019

The best novels, short stories, and nonfiction books have been nominated for the Agatha Awards. There are a lot of keepers such as Trust Me by Hank Phillippi Ryan and of course Louise Penny has a book nominated too. I’m going to have a particularly hard time voting for only one Best Short Story and one Best Historical Novel. Take a look. The novels are worth picking up, and you can read the short stories at

Best Historical Novel

  • Four Funerals and Maybe a Wedding by Rhys Bowen
  • The Gold Pawn by LA Chandlar
  • The Widows of Malabar Hill by Sujata Massey
  • Turning the Tide by Edith Maxwell
  • Murder on Union Square by Victoria Thompson

Best Short Story

  • “All God’s Sparrows” by Leslie Budewitz
  •  “A Postcard for the Dead” by Susanna Calkins
  •  “Bug Appetit” by Barb Goffman
  •  “The Case of the Vanishing Professor” by Tara Laskowski
  •   “English 398: Fiction Workshop” by Art Taylor








Agatha Nominees

As usual, we have a great slate of nominees for best Contemporary Novel. They are….

Annette Dahofy, Bridges Burned (Henery Press

Margaret Maron, Long Upon the Land (Grand Central Publishing)

Catriona McPherson, The Child Garden (Midnight Ink)

Louise Penny, Nature of the Beast (Minotaur Books)

Hank Phillipi Ryan, What You See (Forge Books)

The list is impressive. I’m starting with the book I read first, Nature of the Beast by Louise Penny. I admit that I thought I might be unduly prejudiced in her favor. I do love her characters in their slice of Canada. Her writing is fun and carries me along. However, I wasn’t intrigued by her plot in this one. I’m not sure why. Of course that doesn’t mean that I won’t be back for more of her books. I’m just not sure that she’ll be able to compete with the other nominees this year. We’ll see.