Saturday, November 22, 2008

Mystery Writers of America Names James Lee Burke and Sue Grafton Recipients of the 2009 Grand Master Award
Nov. 20, 2008
NEW YORK, Nov 20, 2008 /PRNewswire-USNewswire via COMTEX/ --

Mystery Writers of America (MWA) has announced that the organization will name James Lee Burke and Sue Grafton its 2009 Grand Masters in honor of the Bicentennial of Edgar Allan Poe's birth next year. Not since 1978 has the organization presented dual Grand Masters.

MWA's Grand Master Award represents the pinnacle of achievement in the mystery genre and was established to acknowledge important contributions to the genre, as well as significant output of consistently high-quality material. The awards will be presented at the 63rd Annual Edgar(R) Awards banquet on Thursday April 30, 2009 at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in New York City.

James Lee Burke has written more than 25 novels, including 17 in his "Dave Robicheaux" series, and his short stories have appeared in countless publications. His novel The Lost Get-Back Boogie was rejected 111 times over the course of nine years, and upon publication was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize. Burke has been the recipient of the Breadloaf and Guggenheim Fellowship, and two of his titles, Heaven's Prisoners and Two for Texas have been made into motion pictures. He has won the Edgar(R) award twice in the category of "Best Novel," placing him in a rare group of multiple winners.

Sue Grafton's Kinsey Millhone series is internationally known and has been published in 28 countries and in 26 languages. Her novels "B" Is for Burglar and "C" Is for Corpse won the first two Anthony Awards ever awarded by Bouchercon, the World Mystery Convention.

In addition to a third Anthony, Grafton has won three Shamus Awards from the Private Eye Writers of America, as well as that organization's Lifetime Achievement Award. In 2008, Grafton was awarded the Cartier Dagger by the British Crime Writers' Association, honoring lifetime achievement in the field.
Previous MWA Grand Masters include Bill Pronzini, Stephen King, Ira Levin, Mary Higgins Clark, Donald Westlake, Lawrence Block, P.D. James, Ellery Queen, Daphne du Maurier, Alfred Hitchcock, Graham Greene, and Agatha Christie.

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