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McIlvanney Prize 2023 Longlist Announced

16 June 2023

The longlist for The McIlvanney Prize, Bloody Scotland's annual prize awarded to the best Scottish Crime book of the year, has been announced. More information about Ulverscroft's longlisted titles are below.

1989 by Val McDermid
Published in large print September 2022.
It's 1989, and Allie Burns is back. Older and maybe wiser, she's running the northern news operation of the SUNDAY GLOBE, chafing at losing her role in investigative journalism and at the descent into the gutter of the UK tabloid media.

And there's plenty to keep her occupied. The year begins with the memorial service to the victims of the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103, but Allie has barely filed her copy when she stumbles over a story about HIV/AIDS that will shock her into a major change of direction.

The world of newspapers is undergoing a revolution, there's skulduggery in the medical research labs, and there are seismic rumblings behind the Iron Curtain. When kidnap and murder are added to this potent mix, Allie is forced to question all her old certainties.

The Second Murderer by Denise Mina
Published in large print in September 2023 and CD and MP3 CD audiobook and uLibrary eAudiobook in August 2023.
It's mid-September, a heatwave has descended on the parched hills of LA and Private Detective Philip Marlowe is called to the Montgomery estate, an almost mythic place sitting high on top of Beverly Hills. Wealthy 22-year-old Chrissie Montgomery, set to inherit an enormous fortune, is missing. She's a walking target, ripe for someone to get their claws into. Her dying father, along with his sultry bottle blonde girlfriend, wants her found before that happens. They've hired Anna Riorden, Marlowe's nemesis, too. The search takes them to the roughest neighbourhoods of LA through dive bars and Skid Row. And that's before he finds the body at The Brody Hotel. Who will get to her first, Marlowe, Anne, or the men chasing her fortune? And does she want to be found?

A Heart Full Of Headstones by Ian Rankin
Published in large print in December 2022.
John Rebus stands accused: on trial for a crime that could put him behind bars for the rest of his life. Although it's not the first time the legendary detective has taken the law into his own hands, it could well be the last.

What drove a good man to cross the line? Or have times changed, and the rules with them?

Meanwhile, Detective Inspector Siobhan Clarke faces Edinburgh's most explosive case in years, as a corrupt cop goes missing after claiming to harbour secrets that could sink the city's police force. But in this investigation, it seems all roads lead to Rebus; and Clarke's twin loyalties to the public and the police will be tested to their limit.

A reckoning is coming - and John Rebus may be hearing the call for last orders...

The Devil's Playground by Craig Russell
Published in CD and MP3 CD audiobook and uLibrary eAudiobook in July 2022.
1927. Hollywood studio fixer Mary Rourke is called to the home of silent movie actress Norma Carlton, star of The Devil's Playground. Finding Carlton dead, Rourke wonders if the rumours that The Devil's Playground really is a cursed production are true. But nothing in Hollywood is ever what it seems, and cynical fixer Rourke finds herself seeking out the truth she is used to covering up. 1967. Paul Conway, film historian and silent movie aficionado, is following a tantalising rumour: that a single copy of The Devil's Playground - a Holy Grail for film buffs, supposedly cursed and lost to time - may exist. His search takes him to an isolated desert hotel that hasn't changed in 40 years, harbouring one occupant - and a shocking secret. Separated by decades, both Rourke and Conway begin to suspect that the real Devil's Playground is Hollywood itself.


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