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Winners of the Crime Writers’ Association’s Specsavers Crime Thriller Awards 2014 have been announced, and they include actress Keeley Hawes and drama Happy Valley.

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Keeley Hawes won the Best Actress Dagger Award for her outstanding performance as DI Lindsay Denton in Line of Duty: Series 2. Other nominees included Brenda Blethyn for her role as DCI Vera Stanhope in Vera: Series 4, Maggie Gyllenhaal as Nessa Stein in The Honourable Woman, Anna Maxwell Martin for her portrayals of both Elizabeth Darcy in Death Comes to Pemberley and Susan in The Bletcheley Circle: Series 2, and Sarah Lancashire as police sergeant Catherine Cawood in Happy Valley.

Matthew McConaughey won the Best Actor Dagger Award for his standout portrayal of Detective Rustin “Rust” Cohle in True Detective: Season 1. Fellow nominees included Benedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock Holmes in Sherlock: Series 3, Shaun Evans as DC Endeavour Morse in Endeavour: Series 2, Martin Freeman as both Dr. John Watson in Sherlock: Series 3 and as Lester Nygaard in Fargo: Season 1, and Steve Pemberton as Kevin Weatherill in Happy Valley.

Amanda Abbington won the Best Supporting Actress Dagger Award for her role as Mary Morstan in Sherlock: Series 3. Nominees in this category included Vicky McClure, for her role as DC Kate Fleming in Line of Duty: Series 2, Helen McCrory as Aunt Polly in Peaky Blinders: Series 1, Gina McKee as Helen Barlow in By Any Means, and Michelle Monaghan as Maggie Hart in True Detective: Season 1.

James Norton won the Best Supporting Actor Dagger Award for his role as Tommy Lee Royce in Happy Valley. Other nominees included Mark Gatiss as Mycroft Holmes in Sherlock: Series 3, David Leon as DS Joe Ashworth in Vera: Series 4, Mandy Patinkin as Saul Berenson in Homeland: Season 3, and Billy Bob Thornton as Lorne Malvo in Fargo: Season 1.

Happy Valley. won the Best TV Series Dagger Award, besting The Bletchley Circle: Series 2, The Honourable Woman, Line of Duty: Series 2, and Sherlock: Series 3.

American crime drama True Detective: Season 1 won the Best International TV Series Dagger Award over American dark-comedy crime drama Fargo: Season 1, Italian mystery series Inspector Montalbano, American dramedy Orange is the New Black: Season 2, and Swedish/Danish crime serial The Bridge (Bron/Broen): Series 2.

And the long-running and ever-popular mystery series, Midsomer Murders, was inducted into the Crime Thriller Awards Hall of Fame, as were Scottish author Denise Mina and English author Robert Harris (who also won this year’s CWA Ian Fleming Steel Dagger Award for Best Thriller of the Year, An Officer and a Spy).

To see the complete list of winners, visit the Crime Thriller Awards website.


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Keeley Hawes, Happy Valley Amongst Winners at Specsavers Crime Thriller Awards 2014