Richard Price and Tom Rob Smith Win Strand's Critics Awards

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Richard Price and Tom Rob Smith win The Strand Magazine's Critics Awards for Best Novel and Best First Novel. The judges were book reviewers from several of the nation's top daily newspapers.

Lush Life and Child 44 were worthy efforts by Richard Price and Tom Rob Smith

The Strand Magazine has announced the winners of the 2008 Strand Magazine Critics Awards. Richard Price took the top prize for Best Novel for Lush Life and Tom Rob Smith won for Best First Novel for Child 44. The winners were announced at an invitation only cocktail party in Manhattan, by bestselling author Jonathan Santlofer. Price and Smith thanked the judges and paid tribute to their fellow nominees.

Richard Price earned rave reviews for his meticulously researched crime novel Lush Life which was set in New York's Lower Eastside and explores themes from crime to class inequality, and the struggle to survive in a violent environment. Tom Rob Smith's first novel Child 44, hit the New York Times bestseller list and became an overnight sensation, the novel is loosely based on a true story about a chilling serial killer in Communist Russia.

Best Novel:
When Will There Be Good News? by Kate Atkinson (Little, Brown and Company)
Master of the Delta by Thomas H. Cook (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)
The Brass Verdict by Michael Connelly (Little, Brown and Company)
Lush Life by Richard Price (Farrar, Straus and Giroux)
Hollywood Crows by Joseph Wambaugh (Little, Brown and Company)
Best First Novel:
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson (Knopf)
City of the Sun by David Levien (Doubleday)
A Cure for Night by Justin Peacock (Doubleday)
Child 44 by Tom Rob Smith (Grand Central Publishing)
A Carrion Death by Michael Stanley (Harper)

"Lush Life and Child 44 were worthy efforts by Richard Price and Tom Rob Smith," said Andrew F. Gulli, the managing editor of The Strand. "The voting was so close this year, that the winners and nominees were separated by only a handful of votes."

This year's judges included Otto Penzler, Dennis Drabelle of The Washington Post, David Ulin of the LA Times, Lev Grossman of Time Magazine, Carol Memmott of USA Today, Maureen Corrigan of NPR, and Bruce DeSilva of the Associated Press.

A lifetime achievement award was given posthumously to English author John Mortimer which was accepted by his wife Penny Mortimer.

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