Thriller Book Awards: The 2022 Book Awards Are Now Open

It’s with great pleasure that we announce the 2022 edition of the Book Awards, the world’s only thriller book award series specifically devoted to recognizing amazing mystery and thriller novels across 15 popular sub-genres.

This fall, forty-six (46!!!) deserving authors will be recognized for their outstanding achievements in fiction writing.

Mystery and Thriller Book Awards Seal

The 2022 Overall Book of the Year Winner will receive $1000 in cash, our gold-and-black award seal for their book cover or website, top billing in our awards press release, inclusion in a weekly featured books newsletter and more.

Fifteen category winners will receive a winner’s seal for their book cover, a book post on, inclusion in our popular Best of the Year post and more. Categories include Action, Crime, Fantasy & Dystopian, Historical, Medical, Military, Mystery, Horror & Paranormal, Psychological, Romantic Suspense, Sci-Fi and Spy.

Thirty second and third place category finalists receive a press kit including a silver finalist seal, and a one-sentence quote from for use in book marketing campaigns.

Who is eligible to enter?

Any English-language mystery or thriller published in 2021 or 2022. If your book is not yet published, pre-published manuscripts targeting a release prior to December 31, 2021 will be accepted. See the Contest Rules for more details.

Learn more about how to enter and win here.

Last Year’s Winners and Finalists

The 2021 winners and finalists were remarkably diverse. Winning writers hailed from many countries and regions across the globe, including Australia (Yearn to Fear), Belgium (Alejandro’s Lie), Japan (Tokyo Zangyo), the U.K. (The Achilles Gene), the U.S. and elsewhere.

In addition, the awardees include both established writers and first-time novelists, such as Book of the Year winner David Shawn Klein. 

Here’s a complete list of the 2021 winners and finalists. Want to talk about these great books with other readers? Join our Book Award Group on GoodReads!).

Why are we doing this?

Book awards are an important tool for helping authors stand out from the pack and building a readership.

But mystery and thriller authors are often precluded from the award scene because of genre bias. The literary world is brimming with prizes (check out our big list of book awards), but sadly, aside from a couple of specialized awards put on by great organizations, deserving mystery and thriller authors are largely shunned from the party.

How often do you see a crime thriller or psychological thriller take home the National Book Award, a Pulitzer, a Booker award or any of the other major prizes? It’s extremely rare. In addition to genre bias, many mystery and thriller writers simply aren’t eligible for other book awards because of specialized requirements such as gender, religious point of view or career stage. It’s wonderful that so many specialized awards exist, but the result is that genre books rarely get a coveted gold seal.

Meanwhile, the mystery and thriller genre is the second-most read fiction category in the world, behind only Romance and Erotica. Like most fans, we see many highly outstanding books each year that deliver high-octane entertainment while also adding sophisticated insights into the human condition.

How to Enter

Early entry is open now. Until April 30 2022, a discount code EARLYENTRY will offer substantial savings at checkout. The final deadline for entry is September 30 2022.

See you in the winner’s circle!

Check out Previous Book Award Winners

thriller book award winners

A complete list of 2021 winners follows:

Book of the Year

The Money by David Shawn Klein

Action Thriller

Cover Your Tracks By Daco Auffenorde

Conspiracy Thriller

JK’s Code by Ronald S. Barak

Crime Thriller

The Three Lives of Richie O’Malley by William Lobb

Historical Thriller

The Silver Waterfall by Kevin Miller

Horror Novel

Have You Seen Me? by Alexandrea Weis

Legal Thriller

Standby Counsel by Alexi Venice

Medical Thriller

The Achilles Gene by N.E. Miller

Military Thriller

Treason Flight by T.R. Matson

Mystery Novel

Tokyo Zangyo by Michael Pronko

Paranormal Thriller

Soul Seeker by Kaylin McFarren

Political Thriller

Alejandro’s Lie by Bob Van Laerhoven

Psychological Thriller

The Hiding Girl by Dorian Box

Romantic Suspense

Newark Minutemen by Leslie K. Barry

Spy Thriller

Yearn to Fear by Chas Murrell

Sci-Fi Thriller

Quantum Alibi by Liam Fialkov

Bella Wright

Bella Wright blogs about books, film and media.

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