Rick’s 2016 release, Rundown, has just won the 2017 Arthur Ellis Award
The Crime Writers of Canada Arthur Ellis Awards are the country’s most prestigious book prize for crime writing.
On the evening of May 25, 2017, at its annual awards gala held at Toronto’s famous Arts & Letters Club, Rick was honoured when his book won in the Best Novella category. Rick’s reaction was, “Shock and amazement. The shortlist this year included novellas by authors who have won multiple Arthurs and all the books were very strong. I figured I had zero chance of winning.”
Rundown is the third book in the Pratt & Ellis Mystery Series.
Toronto homicide detectives Pratt and Ellis are handed a hot case on a cold and snowy evening: a terribly injured school teacher out jogging, the victim of a hit-and-run driver. She’s not expected to survive. The accident bears a striking resemblance to the hit-and-run death of a businessman a few weeks earlier. The only connection between these two random events is that both victims were thirty-six years old. Pretty soon the detectives discover a third hit-and-run death in Ottawa and it's looking more and more like someone is either killing random people using cars, or something far more sinister and complicated is going on. City Hall and the brass upstairs want answers and they want them now! The city could panic if there’s a crazy on the loose.
Pratt and Ellis have their skills tested to the limit as they work flat out, sifting through shifting motives and stories to get to the truth before another victim else gets rundown.
Here are the judging panel’s comments on the prize winner:
“The judges are happy to report that the crime fiction novella form is thriving. Competition this year was tough with many fine entries by both new and established authors. The winning entry, Rundown, impressed us with its two engaging protagonists and its strong writing, a deft blend of humour and suspense. Within a few short pages, Rick Blechta presents a challenging mystery and a thrilling police investigation with all the frustrations, twists and breaks in the case readers anticipate and enjoy. Beyond the mystery, the story probes more deeply into issues of socio-economic class and the lingering damage of crime on both victim and perpetrator. A great read and we look forward to many more mysteries solved by the team of Detectives Pratt and Ellis.”
Get your copy of the 2017 Arthur Ellis Best Novella Award now! Available at all bookstore and online.
Rick’s first audio book is now available from audible.com!
“Classical music lovers will welcome this compelling mystery... The suspense will keep readers turning the pages until the dramatic conclusion.” Publishers Weekly
“Blechta writes entertaining, well-researched stories with dialogue and setting as highlights. In The Fallen One, he’s kicked it up a notch.” Hamilton Spectator
Now you can take a Blechta novel on the road with you! The reading was done by the talented Christa Lewis who really does make Marta Hendriks come alive. She can speak with a darned nice French accent, too. The recording is complete and unabridged and runs nine hours and forty-two minutes. Ordering your copy is easy. You can go to audible.com, of course, or you can also purchase a copy from the iTunes website (you’ll need a copy of the iTunes app in order to download the book). This is especially helpful if you have an iPod or other Apple product, although the recording will work on any electronic device. Have a long car trip or airline flight coming up? This could be the answer to a more pleasant journey.
The Fallen One is set in Paris, Montreal and Toronto, the story is about an opera singer who has never achieved the greatness of which she is capable until her beloved husband is killed in a tragic house fire. Since it’s set in the opera world, the storyline is, well, operatic, but also intensely interesting because of this. We’d love to tell you more about the plot, but you’re just going to have to go out and buy a copy. Suffice it to say, The Fallen One has been declared to be “vintage Blechta” with all the elements readers have come to expect, as well as some exciting twists and turns. Throw in “The City of Light” as a major location, and it’s no wonder Rick’s first novel with Dundurn Press was such a success, currently on its third printing. To read complete versions of several of the reviews, please click HERE.
An interview with Rick in 2010:
Rick has embarked on a new career as a food writer and commenter.
Visit A Man for All Seasonings on blogspot.com to see what he has to say. Having worked in kitchens during his early years, he has a lifelong passion about all things food. On the new blog, he’ll be sharing his thoughts about the food we eat, cooking tips, and, of course, recipes he’s collected over the years, as well as some he and his wife have made up. A Man for All Seasonings, always in good taste. Drop by today!
He’s joined up with several of his mystery writing compadres to form TYPE M FOR MURDER. Frankie Bailey, Barbara Fradkin, John Corrigan, Donis Casey, Hannah Dennison, Charlotte Hinger, Aline Templeton, Sybil Johnson and Rick all have highly different views on crime writing as well as the writing game. It makes for highly entertaining reading. Rick’s slot is every Tuesday. Check it out! typem4murder.blogspot.com.
Rick’s previous blog entries are still on this site. Just look in the menu bar under Writing.
RECENT ADDITIONS TO THE WEBSITE
We now have some photos that Rick took as part of his research for When Hell Freezes Over. These can be found under PHOTOS on the menu bar. If you go to the When Hell Freezes Over page, you’ll find a link for our new “Deleted Scenes” page which we think is really cool. Think of those additions you get on DVDs these days.
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Rick Blechta is a crime novelist and musician living in Toronto and this site is dedicated to his twin passions in life: crime writing and music. He’s had eight novels published, with the eighth, Roses for a Diva, was released in Fall of 2015. His third novella in the Pratt and Ellis series was published in Fall 2016. All of the recent ones are available worldwide at bookstores or online.
Rick’s first novel, Knock on Wood and his third, Shooting Straight in the Dark, are still available, but generally only at Sleuth of Baker Street or through this website. Rick’s 2005 novel, Cemetery of the Nameless is available in most bookstores in Canada, many in the U.S, as well as all the online ones. His second novel, The Lark Ascending, is out of print, but you can occasionally find it available from used book sellers but it can be priced high because of its rarity.
This site also has information on Rick’s other interests and things he gets up to from time to time. Make yourself at home and feel free to take a look around the site.
We hope you enjoy your visit!
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After numerous requests, rickblechta.com added a guestbook and we’d like to invite anyone who visits the site to sign it. We especially welcome questions and comments about the books or Rick’s musical endeavors. Please click on the two links below to view the guestbook or to add your own entry. Come on now; don’t be shy!
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