Level Best Books


Founded in 2003, Level Best Books is the publisher of novels and crime fiction anthologies, including The Best New England Crime Stories, released every November at New England Crime Bake. Well-regarded by readers and reviewers, stories published by Level Best have won the Agatha, Anthony, Macavity, Derringer and Robert L. Fish Award for Best First Short Story presented at the Edgar® banquet. Level Best short stories have also been recognized as Best and Distinguished Mystery Stories by the editors of the Best American Mystery Stories series. Level Best also publishes the winning story from the Al Blanchard Award every year. 

In addition to the Best New England Crime Stories, Level Best is the publisher of crime fiction anthologies from The Writers’ Police Academy and the New York/Tri-State Chapter of Sisters in Crime. Level Best has also published themed anthologies on the subjects of Law Enforcement, Culinary Noir, and Me Too short stories.  

In addition to crime fiction anthologies, Level Best Books also publishes quality mystery, thriller, and crime fiction novels.

We are thrilled that five short stories published by Level Best Books were selected by Otto Penzler and Louise Penny to be included in
The Best American Mystery Stories 2018

Chosen as Best Stories:

“Smoked” by Michael Bracken from Noir at the Salad Bar: Culinary Tales With a Bite

“Rule Number One” by Alan Orloff in Snowbound: The Best New England Crime Stories 2017

Chosen as Other Distinguished Mystery Stories:

“Prey of New York” by Rona Bell in Where Crime Never Sleeps: Murder New York Style 4

“The Drive By” by Alison McMahan in Busted! Arresting Stories From the Beat

“Sensitivity Training” by Albert Tucher in Busted! Arresting Stories From the Beat