Agatha Awards are given for materials first published in the United States by a living author during the current calendar year, either in hardcover, as a paperback original, or e-published by an e-publishing firm.
The Agatha Awards honor the "traditional mystery." That is to say, books best typified by the works of Agatha Christie as well as others. For our purposes, the genre is loosely defined as mysteries that:
- contain no explicit sex
- contain no excessive gore or gratuitous violence
Materials generally classified as "hard-boiled" are not appropriate.