The Crime Readers' Association

M.W. Craven


Multi-award winning author M. W. Craven was born in Carlisle but grew up in Newcastle. He joined the army at sixteen, leaving ten years later to complete a social work degree. Seventeen years after taking up a probation officer role in Cumbria, at the rank of assistant chief officer, he became a full-time author. The Puppet Show, the first book in his Cumbria-set Washington Poe series, was published by Little, Brown in 2018 and went on to win the Crime Writers’ Association Gold Dagger in 2019. It has now been translated into twenty-five languages. Black Summer, the second in the series, was longlisted for the 2020 Gold Dagger as was book three, The Curator. The fourth in the series, Dead Ground, was published in 2021 and was an instant Sunday Times bestseller; in 2022 it won the Crime Writers’ Association Ian Fleming Steel Dagger. Book five, The Botanist, was published in June 2022, and was also a Sunday Times bestseller. The Poe & Tilly novella, The Cutting Season, was released in April 2022 as part of this year’s Quick Reads programme, run by The Reading Agency.

Other Awards

Shortlisted for CWA 2013 Debut Dagger – Born in a Burial Gown

Won CWA 2019 Gold Dagger – The Puppet Show

Shortlisted for Dead Good Reader Award – The Puppet Show

Shortlisted for Amazon Publishing Readers Award – The Puppet Show

Shortlisted for Glass Bell Award for Contemporary Fiction – The Puppet Show

Longlisted for CWA 2020 Gold Dagger – Black Summer

Longlisted for CWA 2021 Gold Dagger – The Curator

Won CWA 2022 Ian Fleming Steel Dagger – Dead Ground

Books by M.W. Craven

  • Cut Short Cut Short


  • The Botanist The Botanist


  • The Cutting Season The Cutting Season

    Hive Amazon

  • Black Summer Black Summer


  • The Puppet Show The Puppet Show


  • The Curator The Curator


  • Dead Ground Dead Ground


  • Born in a Burial Gown Born in a Burial Gown


  • Body Breaker Body Breaker


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