Cleeves, James and Hawkins win Dead Good Awards…

Saturday 20 July 2015

By Sarah Shaffi

The Bookseller

Established authors Ann Cleeves and Peter James and newcomer Paula Hawkins were among the winners of the inaugural Dead Good Reader Awards.

The awards, given out on Friday 17th July at the Theakstons Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival in Harrogate, were voted on by readers and members of Penguin Random House’s crime community Dead Good Books.

The awards were presented by Mark Lawson and authors Lee Child and Val McDermid, the latter of whom also won a prize.

McDermid took The Reichenbach Falls Award for Most Epic Ending, for her book The Skeleton Road (Sphere).

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Writer Val McDermid sponsors Raith Rovers shirts…

Saturday 13 June 2015

ANTHONY BROWN in The Scotsman

Prog Val and ray new strip 3828 (1)

Kit sponsor Val McDermid joins recently-appointed manager Ray McKinnon to unveil Raith Rovers new strip

WHEN, as a little girl, Val McDermid first visited “the San Starko” – as she affectionately refers to Stark’s Park, Raith Rovers’ home ground – and experienced the unique terracing thrill of “a cold bum and pie dripping down my sleeve”, she could never have envisaged that by the age of 60, hers would be one of the most prominent names associated with her beloved football club.

The greatest impact is in China because the highlights have been shown on Chinese TV

Val McDermid

A career as an award-winning crime writer, in which she has sold more than 11 million books worldwide and had her work translated into 30 different languages, however, has elevated the Kirkcaldy wordsmith to “celebrity Rovers fan” status alongside her fellow author, Ian Rankin, Coldplay’s Guy Berryman and, of course, the former prime minister, Gordon Brown.

The name McDermid was already held in high esteem in the Fife town long before Val’s writing ability hoisted her into the public domain, with her late father, Jim, renowned as the man who unearthed the great Jim Baxter in his role as a Rovers scout. Now his daughter is carrying on the family name’s proud link with the club.

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Val McDermid and a novel sort of crime scene…

Saturday 13 June 2015
The Herald, Scotland

Not content with feeding the appetite of crime fiction readers worldwide, Val McDermid is now helping the University of Dundee’s Centre for Anatomy and Human Identification in a distinctly novel way.

Working at CAHID is clearly a bit of a wheeze. So enjoyable is the work they do, helping police identify corpses found in a range of highly unusual and complicated situations, they now want others to share the fun. Thus, lay people without so much as a GSCE in biology are being invited to take part in a completely free online course. Lasting six weeks, this will use a short story McDermid has written specially for the purpose. Given instruction in various forensic techniques, students can then try to solve the crime. Later, once the identity of the victim and the cause of death have been established, McDermid will publish the story that lies behind the crime, fleshing it out, as you might say.

Reading about this I had a moment of revelation. One of the reasons I rarely read crime fiction, and certainly not the sort where scientific terms are commoner than commas, is that I am never curious enough about why someone has been killed. Probably because I know it will all be explained to me in due course, I can’t be bothered trying to work out what’s going on and why, ahead of schedule.

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