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Kerrigan's tale of Dublin crime wins top award

AUTHOR and journalist Gene Kerrigan has won the UK's Best Crime Novel of the Year Award -- the Gold Dagger.

It was Kerrigan's second short-listing for the UK honour. He previously won the Irish Crime Novel of the Year award.

His win sees him join the ranks of previous Gold Dagger winners Henning Mankel -- whose character Kurt Wallander was played by Kenneth Branagh (right) in the TV series -- James Lee Burke and Patricia Cornwell.

Kerrigan's new book, The Rage, described as "a suspense-driven storm of violence set in the backstreets of Dublin" was chosen from a list of four which included Vengeance In Mind by NJ Cooper, The Flight by MR Hall and Bereft by Chris Womersley.

Kerrigan took the €3,000 prize for a tale which intertwines the stories of thief Vincent Naylor, just out of jail and planning a robbery, and detective Bob Tidey.

Tidey is involved in investigating the murder of a banker when he is tipped off by a nun that there is something suspicious happening on her Dublin street, violence ensues.

The awards judges described it as a "complex noir thriller that's multi-layered and solidly written, with great style and pace.

"The depiction of post-crash Dublin has a real sense of menace and threat."

Kerrigan said he was honoured to be named in on the same page as the previous winners.