First of all, as always, thank you. Any awards we win are all thanks to your interest, and your votes, and we are always stunned by your generosity.

This year’s Reader Poll went wonderfully. Thanks to you, Nicole Petit finally completed her climb to Best Editor! Jon Black continued to a titan! And Barbara Sobczyńska earned a very well deserved award for Best Cover! Among many, many other things you’ll see below.

Congratulations to all of our authors, artists, and friends! 


First-Place Winners

Best Thriller Novel

After winning Best Other Short Story last year, Jon Black’s novel-length expansion of Bel Nemeton won for Best Thriller!


A globe-trotting quest for the treasures of the historical Merlin.

From the Preditors and Editors Readers’ Poll Award-Winning Author Jon Black…

Carvings have been unearthed in the Middle East. They bear impossible names–Arthur and Merlin, albeit in a native transliteration. How did these names come so far? Do they imply the existence of a historical Arthur and Merlin? The scholars do what they always do. They arrange a press meeting.

But scholars aren’t the only attendees. After heavily-armed mercenaries steal the stone, Dr. Vivian Cuinnsey is forced to work with Jake Booker, a self-professed treasure hunter. Can he be trusted? Or is he just one more force after Merlin’s treasure for personal profit?

From the Middle East to the caves of Israel to German record rooms to Oxford’s secret underworld, chase Vivian and Jake in their pursuit of Merlin’s greatest treasure.

Best Cover Artwork – Barbara Sobczyńska’s cover for Bel Nemeton

But it wasn’t only Jon’s novel you loved, but also Barbara Sobczyńska’s wonderful cover.

Best Other Short Story – Jon Black’s “A Scandal in Hollywood” (from Nicole Petit’s Silver Screen Sleuths)

Continuing your love for Jon’s stories, he also won Best All Other Short Story thanks to his Basil Rathbone mystery from Silver Screen Sleuths!

It’s a Rollicking Riot of Crime-Solving Fun!

All your favorite stars pull on their deerstalkers and investigate!

Adventurous Mysteries in the Tradition of Old Hollywood

Award-winning curator Nicole Petit presents seven all-new mystery stories featuring the stars of Golden Age Hollywood.

Basil Rathbone plays a game of deduction and death against a madman who is convinced he’s as good as Sherlock Holmes. Errol Flynn crosses swords with men who take his star-power a bit too literally.

Ginger Rogers, Lucille Ball, Jimmy Stewart, and Henry Fonda have a double date with murder in the legendary Coconut Grove. Shirley Temple pays a diplomatic visit to East Berlin as plans for a German super-communication device are stolen, and a little girl is caught in the crossfire.

A paranoid director tasks Vincent Price with discovering why a dead man was found in his temple set. George Zucco’s latest low-budget western is interrupted by murder – and the ancient cult that may have committed them. Margaret Rutherford tangles with ghosts and Nazis at a stately manor home where all may not be as it seems.

Silver Screen Sleuths presents mystery stories in the style and tradition of Golden Age B-movie mysteries, starring the stars themselves.

Curated by Nicole Petit and featuring stories by Josh Reynolds, Jon Black, Nicole Petit & James Bojaciuk, C.L. Werner, M.H. Norris, William Martin, & John Linwood Grant.

Best Editor – Nicole Petit

After climbing up the editorial ranks the last few years, Nicole Petit has earned the position of #1 Best Editor.

Top-Ten Winners


Best Artwork – #2 – Johannes Chazot’s cover for Silver Screen Sleuths

You awarded another of our favorite artists’, Johannes Chazot’s, work with Best Artwork. The SiIver Screen Sleuths cover is one of our favorites, and we were so happy to see it nominated.

Best Horror Novel – #3 – J Patrick Allen’s Hallows of Decay

A perennial favorite of our readers, J Patrick Allen’s Dead West series went up against the stiff competition in the Best Horror Novel category once more. J.P. has landed in the top three two years running, will next year finally be the big break-through?

Doctor Quillburn’s Miracle Panacea
Conquer Cholera ~ Bushwhack Buboes ~ War Upon Wasting!

A traveling alchemist, a ruined town, and below it all a dreaming god

Everyone brought something from the old country. Grandfather’s watch, and grandmother’s china’ great-grandfather’s folklore, and great-great-grandmother’s fairy tales. What is never discussed, however, are the undying characters of folklore: nix and fairy, goblin and vampire, dragon and eldritch things who all came to America’s shores in time with the rhyme of their tales.

The Knights of Charlotte hunt those things, ensuring what came from the dark stays in the dark.Two of their knights, Samuel and Charlie, approach the tiny town of Silverton. It’s in a precarious position. A cult worships out in the dead mine, approaching town only to proselytize the town, by force if necessary. Its inhuman aid, the Seraphs, prove nearly impossible to kill. Even for Knights of Charlotte.

As the siege of Silverton devolves into chaos, Charlie is cast into a phantom world where everything he’s learned so far seems useless. Unable to navigate, eat, or communicate with another living being, he’s still the best hope for survival.

Elsewhere, something ancient slumbers.

Dead West: Hallows of Decay picks up where Bond of Blood and the rest of J Patrick Allen’s award-winning Dead West series left off.

Best Anthology – #5 – Nicole Petit’s anthology Silver Screen Sleuths

Thank you so much for your interest in, and love for, Silver Screen Sleuths!

Best Romance Novel – #7 – Every Little Thing

Equally horror and romance – without quite stepping into paranormal romance – Every Little Thing was an experiment on our part. We’re so glad that you loved it! That you voted it into being the #7 best Romance Novel was wonderful and unexpected. Between the stiff competition in the romance category, this being Anna Maloney’s first novel, and it being a new sort of thing for all of us – we couldn’t be more delighted at how it did. 

Friends of 18thWall Productions

Best Science Fiction & Fantasy Short Story – #2 – Kara Dennison’s “The Wandering Child” (from Elizabeth Evershed’s Stranger Tales of the City)

Best Science Fiction & Fantasy Short Story – #4 – James Bojaciuk’s “Philology: The Real Professional Bag of Tricks” (from Elizabeth Evershed’s Stranger Tales of the City)

That Elizabeth Evershed’s Stranger Tales of the City should win awards is unsurprising. That it should win two highly-placed awards in the same category is, perhaps, just a little surprising. Even with a split vote, two stories from the book placed in the top five! Liz and Kara’s outstanding work more than deserved this recognition, and it’s endlessly surprising that this the first award won by either of them.

The knights hospitaller have just woken to a second life in a City the size of a galaxy. 

Two strangers from a far-distant future are flung together on Resurrection Day. 

A window-seller visits a claustrophobic suburb and finds it full of mystery. 

A Remake gunslinger seeks a new role from the one he was  always meant to play… 

In this, the sixth anthology in the City of the Saved series, we meet a host of human and not-so-human characters getting to grips with life in the afterlife: alien adoptees with no previous experience of human cultures; Citizens permanently missing and not merely misplaced; priestesses of long-forgotten religions; posthumans with their own baffling version of the Civil Tongue; a viral strain of humankind that has never known community… 

The City is full of strangers and these are their tales.

Click here to get it!

Best Fiction Magazine – #3 – Occult Detective Quarterly

Occult Detective Quarterly is one of the finest fiction magazines out today. That it scored so well, a more than respectable #3, speaks to its high standard. 

The popular supernatural magazine OCCULT DETECTIVE QUARTERLY returns with it’s 4th issue! Edited by John Linwood Grant and Dave Brzeski, this issue contains fiction by Josh Reynolds, Sarah Hans, Rhys Hughes and many more! Also contains reviews of new books and audio programs and, of course, new episodes of BORKCHITO: OCCULT DOGGO DETECTIVE by Sam L. Edwards and Yves Tourigny. It’s another issue of the best in Occult Detective fiction and not to be missed!

Click here to get it!

Best Steampunk Novel – #3 – C.L. Werner’s Overlords of the Iron Dragon

Another of our favorite novels from 2018 was C.L. Werner’s Overlords of the Iron Dragon. We’re happy to see you loved it as well!

A down-on-his luck duardin captain has a change in fortune when he finds an untapped source of aether-gold, but is the danger that awaits him worth the prize?

Far above the highest mountain peaks, a new power has arisen. The duardin have developed new technology and weapons of war, and now they sail the skies in their amazing airships, seeking wealth and plunder. Brokrin Ullissonn, captain of the airship Ang Drak, has a reputation for bad luck. Unless his fortune turns, and soon, he will lose his ship and his livelihood. When he and his crew discover the location of a source of aether-gold of unparalleled quality, the temptation is too strong to resist, for no matter what dangers present themselves, the duardin desire wealth beyond all. But when Brokrinn realises what the true cost of the aether-gold will be, is it too late for him to save himself, his crew, and his ship?

Best Mystery Novel – #4 – Andrew Cartmel’s The Vinyl Detective: Victory Disc

Andrew Cartmel’s The Vinyl Detective is one of the best mystery series out today, so we couldn’t be happier to see it do so well in the standings!

This time the search for a rare record ensnares our hero in a mystery with its roots stretching back to the Second World War. Three young RAF airmen played in a legendary band called the Flare Path Orchestra. When a precious record of their music turns up in the most unexpected place the Vinyl Detective finds himself hired to track down the rest of their highly sought-after recordings. But, as he does so, he finds that the battles of the last World War aren’t over yet–and can still prove lethal.

Best Non-Fiction Book – #6 – Dene October’s The Black Archive: Marco Polo

We weren’t aware of this until after voting had closed, but it’s a delight to see another of Obverse’s books, part of their non-fiction Black Archive range, score so well.

‘This is the Plain of Pamir, known to those who travel to Cathay as the Roof of the World.’

Marco Polo (1964) was broadcast during an era of cultural change, reshaping television’s role as historian, and locating the reader, not the author, at the centre of interpretation. This is crucial given how the fourth serial recruits the viewer as a fellow traveller in Marco’s caravan.

The epic journey is staged through camera-treatments and mobility, adaptive and remedial interventions, public and book history, cultural assumptions and memories. Rather than the solitary authorial figure of Marco, this book celebrates the collaborators, copyists, studio personnel and fans, whose community storytelling is in the philosophical spirit of Doctor Who.

The author investigates several threads while keeping to the rhythm of the travelogue, exploiting how the exhaustive televisual experience inverts the trope of time travel. His book is itself a wayfaring reflection on how we travel through media and memory in reconstructing this most famous and earliest of missing stories.

Dene October is editor of Doctor Who and History and is a Senior Lecturer at the University of the Arts, London.  He is in the possibly unique position of having seen Marco Polo not once, but twice, on broadcast.

Click here to get it!