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I don't think I'm exaggerating when I say that the 15th Annual Festival of Mystery on May 3 was the best ever. Our sales were up 10% over last year which was itself a record-breaker. Attendance was up as well and I think everyone: authors, fans and staff, just had the best time.
When we worked it all out we were selling $100 worth of books every 65 seconds.
Our heartfelt thanks to all the customers, authors, volunteers and staff who make the Festival possible and worthwhile every year. It truly is a "family reunion."
Even before we got to the Festival we were feted at the 64th Annual Edgar Banquet where we received the Raven Award. Laura Lippman gave us our intro and presented the award and we couldn't have wished for a better choice than an author who has visited the store with every single one of her many books. The banquet was a chance to catch up with many author friends and the whole evening was simply magical.
You might think from the preceding article that the whole purpose of the Edgar Banquet was to give us the Raven Award. Such was not the case, however, as a number of other Edgar awards were announced.
Best First Edgar was won by Stefanie Pintoff for In the Shadow of Gotham. I should note for the benefit of any authors reading this that Stefenie was at last year's Festival with this book. Just sayin'.
The evening before the banquet we attended the Authors and Editors Cocktail Party where we ran into many other author friends and witnessed the awarding of The Mary Higgins Clark Award to S.J. Bolton for Awakening. The award was presented by MHC herself who I will only say looks exactly like her author photo. We did regret that Hallie Ephron did not win the award for Never Tell a Lie but we plied her with wine afterward and she seemed to recover nicely.
You'll find the complete list of 2010 Edgar Award nominees and winners on our Edgar Award page.
Midst all this excitement we also had the announcement of the Agatha Award winners. The Brutal Telling by Louise Penny won best novel. I should note that Louise was at last year's Festival. Just sayin'.
Best First novel was given to The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie by Alan Bradley.
Best Non-fiction went to Dame Agatha's Shorts by Elena Santangelo.
Congratulations, also, to Hank Phillippi Ryan who won the Agatha for Best Short Story and to Chris Grabenstein who won Best Young Adult for The Hanging Hill.
See the website for the complete list of winners and nominees of the Agatha Awards 2010.
You'll find the MLB Best Seller list for April on the website and it's full of interesting choices for your reading pleasure.
Number 1 in hardcovers is Half-Price Homicide by Elaine Viets. Right behind it is Elizabeth George's This Body of Death, her latest for Thomas Lynley followed by Jacqueline Winspear's The Mapping of Love and Death.
Rita Mae Brown's signed copies of Cat of the Century picked up the number 4 spot.
Some familiar names among the Trade Paperback best sellers included Kathryn Miller Haines for The War Against Miss Winter, Stieg Larsson for both The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo and The Girl Who Played with Fire. (Third book in the trilogy, The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest due out May 25). Also Heather Terrell with Brigid of Kildare.
The Art of Racomg in the Rain, Garth Stein's novel told from the point of view of the dog, was at number 4.
Perennial best seller Donna Leon showed up at the 5 spot with About Face.
Mass market paperbacks start off with two MLB favorites: Carolyn Hart with Dare to Die and Diane Mott Davidson with Fatally Flaky. Right after that comes Ann Granger's series debut Mud, Muck and Dead Things--a British import.
You'll find the complete list of MLB Best Sellers for April on the website.
We're pleased to announce a unique Pittsburgh author event with a talk and signing featuring Scott Turow, April Smith and Thomas Zigal on Sunday, June 13 at 4 pm.
To accomodate the anticipated turnout we'll be holding this event in the beautiful Charity Randall Theater at the Stephen Foster Memorial in Oakland.
Tickets for the event are $6 in advance, $7 at the door (space permitting).
Scott Turow achieved breakthrough success with his first novel, Presumed Innocent, a legal thriller later turned into a successful movie with an impossibly young Harrison Ford. Since that time Turow has published a series of best selling novels as well as works of non-fiction. His debut book was One-L, a memoir of his first year at Harvard Law School. Turow will be in Pittsburgh with Innocent, a sequel of sorts to Presumed Innocent, which features Rusty Sabich, the protagonist from that book, being prosecuted again for murder, this time of his wife.
April Smith is the author of three books featuring Los Angeles-based FBI agent Ana Grey beginning with North of Montana in which Ana takes on a high-profile Hollywood case which turns deadly when her own family history crops up among the clues. Her most recent book, also feturing Ana Grey, is the Judas Horse. April has also worked as a scriptwriter for such shows as Cagney and Lacey.
Thomas Zigal is the author of three books featuring Aspen, Colorado sheriff Kurt Muller. Muller is an aging hippie and native of Aspen and his assuming the post of sheriff puts him in an interesting position between the local population and the wealthy visitors that one more associates with Aspen. Two books in that series followed: Hardrock Stiff and Pariah. He is also the author of a The White League, a novel about a secret society in New Orleans.
Full details and tickets on the website.
Although the weather right now is rainy and chilly we're sure that spring is on the way (or maybe this is spring) but anyway the Spring Coffee & Crime series is ready for action on May 22. Here's the line-up (heh, heh)
Peter May on May 22 - Peter is the Scottish-born, French-living author of the Enzo MacLeod novels and he returns to MLB with the fourth in this unique series featuring a retired Scottish forensic scientist who lives in France who has made a bet that he can solve seven famous cold-case murders. In each book he takes on (and solves) another of these cases. Peter is a terrifically entertaining story teller and author and we guarantee a good time at his event.
Jane K. Cleland on June 5 - Jane will revisit MLB with the fifth book in her Agatha-nominated series with antiques appraiser Josie Prescott, Silent Auction. Jane's books are filled with antiques lore and you'll be sure to enjoy her talk about the many interesting facts and stories she come across in her research.
Michael Koryta on June 19 - We're so pleased to have Michael Koryta make his first visit to MLB. Michael is the author of four books in an excellent PI series set in Cleveland as well as a standalone crime novel. He'll be joining us, however, with an outstanding ghost story for grownups, So Cold the River. The setting of this book is simply irresitable--the old time resort of French Lick, Indiana--and the story and characters will grip you from page one.
Each of the Coffee & Crime events starts at 10 am and includes continental breakfast and author talk and signing. Cost of each event is $5 and reservations are necessary.
Be the first on your block to get your hands on the spectacular new MLB 20th Anniversary/Raven Award mug. This 8 oz. beauty is spectacular in resplendent red with black and white imprinting on both sides. Side one features our regular logo and notice of our 20th Anniversary in October of 2010. On the other side, a special Raven version of our logo to mark our receiving the Raven Award from the Mystery Writers of America.
Important Note: We cannot offer free shipping on orders that include mugs. We must send these Priority Mail and will have to charge you $4.50 shipping regardless of these amount of your order.
The MLB News April-May issue, including Festival of Mystery insert, is ready for download on the website. You don't have to wait one more minute to find out what's coming up in the next two months in the world of mystery. Plus, the four page guide to the Festival of Mystery, now in it's 15th year, is included.
Click on this link and you'll see the entire April-May News, including the Fesitval Insert, exactly as it will appear when printed. If you want a printed copy just remember to use the Adobe Reader print button not the one on your browser.
Other books signed by popular authors that we have or expect include:
Nancy Martin - Our Lady of Immaculate Deception, here now
Lisa Scottoline - Think Twice, here now
Alafair Burke - 212, here now
Rita Mae Brown - Cat of the Century, here now
Jonathan Kellerman - Deception, here now
Anne Perry - Sheen on the Silk, here now
Elaine Viets - Half-Price Homicide, here now
John Sandford - Storm Prey, around May 18
Victoria Thompson - Murder on Lexington Avenue available June 1
As always, supplies of these signed books are limited so please order early.
If you're a Facebook fan then you probably know that what used to say "Become a Fan" for fan pages like ours has been changed to the ubiquitious and, to my mind, rather unenthusiastic "like." Personally, I'm not too crazy about this (rather than just not liking it) because I'd rather be a fan than a liker of something or someone. But that's just me. Anyway, we invite you to become our liker and like us on Facebook.
Please stop by our Facebook for Mystery Lovers Bookshop and become a fan. We're starting to see more posting about author events and other topics. We're happy to hear about what you're reading, authors you discovered and other mystery news.
If you've already signed up we encourage you to post your thoughts. Read a good mystery, looking for suggestions, our fan page is a great place to post.
We'll be using Facebook to notify fans about events in the store and other developments at MLB.
All of our upcoming events are also listed and we would love for customers to post comments or photos about events that they attend.
As promised, a ton of May books populate our New Arrivals this week.
Here's a sample:
Stefanie Pintoff Edgar-winning In the Shadow of Gotham is here in paperback.
The first in Ann Purser's new series, The Hangman's Row Enquiry, is in.
Mark Schweizer adds another chapter to his ecclesiastical series with The Organist Wore Pumps.
Carlos Ruiz Zafon, well known for his novel Shadow of the Wind, has a young adult novel, The Prince of Mist, written a number of years ago but just translated into English.
News books arrive every day check our New Arrivals page often for everything new at MLB.
Here's what you can find at www.mysterylovers.com:
Think Spring-like thoughts
Richard, Mary Alice and the MLB Staff
Did we mention that we won a Raven Award?
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