Click cover to read a sample

A Crime in the Neighborhood – 1999 Winner

Suzanne Berne

In the long hot summer of 1972, three events shattered the serenity of ten year old Marsha’s life: her father ran away with her mother’s sister Ada; Boyd Ellison, a young boy, was molested and murdered; and Watergate made the headlines.

Living in a world no longer safe or familiar, Marsha turns increasingly to ‘the book of evidence’ in which she records the doings of the neighbors, especially of shy Mr Green next door. But as Marsha’s confusion and her murder hunt accelerate, her ‘facts’ spread the damage cruelly and catastrophically throughout the neighborhood.

"I think it was the first time I really saw myself as a novelist. Not as a student or teacher or mother or an “aspiring” anything, but as a novelist."

1999 Shortlist

1999 Longlist

Previous winners

The Women's Prize Podcast


Tune into host Vick Hope and a line-up of incredible guests on our weekly podcast full of unmissable book recommendations.

Win our 2022 shortlist!

Join the Women's Prize newsletter for a chance to win a stack of all 6 brilliant 2022 shortlisted books, and get the latest book news, author features and exciting competitions! (You can unsubscribe at any time)*