A crime mystery has taken the £20,000 top award in the 2021 Kindle Storyteller Award with Rachel McLean winning for her novel The Corfe Castle Murders.
The winner was picked from a shortlist of five novels after a record number of submissions were entered for this year’s contest.
The Corfe Castle Murders is the first book in Rachel McLean’s Dorset Crime series and features DCI Lesley Clarke investigating a murder. It was published in July this year and has already been followed up four more volumes in the series.
Rachel McLean is a prolific author who has published a previous series of six crime novels featuring DI Zoe Finch and set in the West Midlands around Birmingham in the UK. She is also the author of the Division Bell trilogy of political novels, and The Village trilogy of psychological thrillers, and other standalone titles.
She says: I was encouraged by friends to independently publish with KDP, and it was one of the best decisions I have ever made.’
The 2021 judging panel included broadcaster and author Clare Balding, best-selling author Nicola May, 2020 Kindle Storyteller winner Anna McNuff, Sacha Black from the Alliance of Independent Authors, Former Minister of State for Digital and Culture and MP for Gosport Caroline Dinenage, Darren Hardy, Author and Editorial Programmes Manager at Amazon UK, and Michaella Parkes from the Amazon Books Editorial Team.
Darren Hardy, Author and Editorial Programmes Manager at Amazon UK, who chaired the judging panel, says, ‘It is always a tough decision to choose a winner, as they’ve all done well to get to this stage. Rachel McLean’s story hooked us the most from first page to last — capturing our imaginations. It left us wanting to stay in the story and follow DCI Lesley Clarke on her next adventure. Rachel is a worthy winner and congratulations to all our shortlisted authors. It will be exciting to see how all their careers develop in the coming years.”
This was the fifth year of the Kindle Storyteller Award in the UK.