Andy Straka

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Andy Straka is a Shamus Award-winning American crime novelist.[1] His newest book, Dragonflies: Shadow of Drones, was published May 14, 2013. Born and raised in upstate New York and a graduate of Williams College, he worked in publishing and medical sales for nearly fifteen years before turning to writing in the late 1990s. His debut private-eye novel, A Witness Above, garnered Shamus, Anthony, and Agatha Award nominations for Best First Novel in 2002. A Killing Sky received an Anthony Award nomination in 2003, and Andy’s third book, Cold Quarry, won a 2004 Shamus Award. His series of four full-length novels features Frank Pavlicek, a former New York City Police detective who relies in part on his red-tailed hawk to solve criminal cases. The fourth novel in the Pavlicek series, Kitty Hitter, was called a "great read" by Library Journal. Kitty Hitter was re-released with a new title, The Night Falconer, as an e-book and paperback. A fifth book featuring Pavlicek is the novella Flightfall, and Andy is at work on another full-length novel in the series.

Andy’s inaugural non-series novel, Record of Wrongs, was labelled "a first-rate thriller" by Mystery Scene magazine in 2008. His second non-series novel is The Blue Hallelujah. Publishers Weekly magazine cited Andy among the "rising stars in crime fiction."

Andy also has written a short story, Directions For Disassembly Of An Old Set Of Swings. And he recently reworked his first novel, A Witness Above, into an edition for teenagers, including a falconry primer. Andy's interest in family stems in part from his own household: he and his wife have six children.

Andy's interests range from parenting and basketball (he was co-captain of his college team) to English and predatory birds (he is a licensed falconer). The Virginia author and former book editor discusses current events and other matters at his website,, The Hawk Writer's Guide to the Galaxy. Andy is a frequent presenter at the nearly two-decades-old Virginia Festival of the Book, and he is a co-founder of the popular Crime Wave session at the annual event.


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