Winner of Deanston Scottish Crime Book of the Year 2013The Deanston Scottish Crime Book of the Year has been awarded to Malcolm Mackay for his novel How a Gunman Says Goodbye.

The author collected the prize, a bespoke crystal decanter of Deanston 12 YO Highland Single Malt Whisky and a cheque for £1,000, at the awards dinner on Saturday 14 September at The Golden Lion Hotel, Stirling.

Malcolm Mackay burst onto the literary scene earlier this year with his highly praised debut The Necessary Death of Lewis WinterHow a Gunman Says Goodbye, the sequel, was selected for the prize by a panel of top critics including former Times editor Magnus Linklater and Baillie Liz Cameron of Glasgow City Council.  Both thrillers are part of a trilogy which plunges into Glasgow’s dark, criminal underworld.

Magnus Linklater, former Times editor and chair of the judging panel, said:  “Malcolm Mackay brings something new to the crime genre with this novel.  This is no straight Glasgow gangland book, but a brave and involving psychological study of the cycle of life.”

Malcolm Mackay said, “It’s a huge and unexpected honour to win the Deanston Scottish Crime Book of the Year.  At this stage of my career, I still feel like a kid being allowed to sit at the grownup’s table when put beside talent like my fellow nominees, so just being nominated was a great thrill for me.
“The quality of the six shortlisted novels highlights the depth and variety of Scottish crime writing, and the Deanston Award and Bloody Scotland Festival show what a vibrant scene it is.”How a Gunman Says Goodbye - Malcolm Mackay

The well sought after literary award provides Scottish Crime Writing with recognition and aims to raise the profile and prestige of the genre as a whole.  Scottish roots were a must for competition applications, all of whom were required to be either a permanent resident, work predominately in Scotland, or of course born in Scotland.

The winning author beat out stiff competition from five other titles shortlisted for the 2013 prize:  Ann Cleeves, Dead Water; Gordon Ferris, Pilgrim Soul; Denise Mina,The Red Road; Val McDermid, The Vanishing Point; and Ian Rankin – Standing in Another Man’s Grave.

Deanston Distillery’s support of Bloody Scotland fits with the distillery’s history and bloody past, including connections to the infamous Burke and Hare.  Originally established as a cotton mill in the 18th century, Deanston transformed into a whisky distillery in 1966 and nowadays produces award-winning hand-made Highland single malt.

Senior Brand Manager, Michelle Lansdowne said, “One of the main reasons we’re backing this award is because it represents a new style of tradition and supports home-grown creativity.  It’s exciting to see a Scottish newcomer like Malcolm recognised for his extraordinary talent.  Huge congratulations to Malcolm – we wish him every success for the future.”