Science Fiction & Fantasy Award Winning Book Group discussion

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Award Discussion > Nebula Award Discussion

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message 1: by Joe (new)

Joe (finalblowjoe) | 264 comments Mod
Discussion on the Nebula Awards; which started in 1966.


message 2: by Jon (new)

Jon | 346 comments Mod
Looks like the 2016 Nebula Award finalists have been announced. I've read four of the five Novel finalists and one of the novella finalists, which is pretty good for me. I'm afraid Rachel was prescient in one of her comments on a different thread. I'm afraid because I share her concern.


Rachel (Kalanadi) (kalanadi) So.... 2016 Nebula Awards shortlist.

I'm quite happy with the diversity of the Novels category - 4 women, 1 man; 3 authors of color; and 2 are trans (has that ever happened before? probably not!).

However, I think 2 of the 5 novels are very weak (All the Birds in the Sky and Everfair). Surprised to see Borderline, but glad. The Obelisk Gate and Ninefox Gambit were both great. But yes, I expect All the Birds in the Sky to win because SFWA, critics, and authors in general this year LOVE that book.

Novellas - no surprises. I've read 3 of the 6, and plan to read a 4th (The Ballad of Black Tom) this week. Tor.com is really dominating novella categories now - I think they do great stuff, but would like to see more novella venues represented.

I've also read 9 of the novelettes/short stories. Cat Rambo's story got dropped (wasn't eligible for word length) so that leaves 3 remaining that I may try to read. Almost no overlap with my Hugo nominations - short fiction is so diverse and fragmented!


message 4: by Joe (new)

Joe (finalblowjoe) | 264 comments Mod
I've only read 1 of the novels, Ninefox Gambit which was really good, and a small scattering of the others.

I haven't read many so lack the knowledge to make any guesses so far. Borderline and Obelisk Gate I do intend to read but as always it's the question of when. I haven't heard hear a lot of positive thoughts about the other two from people I trust so highly unsure if I'll read them.

I'm happy that I've read quite a few of the short stories. Despite reading a lot of short stories last year I'm still surprised by that. There's just so many short stories out there being released and only so few for any one award.


message 5: by Jon (new)

Jon | 346 comments Mod
The Obelisk Gate and Ninefox Gambit would be my 1-2 picks in the novel category. I enjoyed Borderline but not as much as the first two. I didn't care for All the Birds in the Sky. Everfair was on my TBR until I heard that it was multiple POVs spread out over a long period of time. Not my favorite type of story so I never picked it up. I might reconsider if it wins.

I read The Ballad of Black Tom and really enjoyed it. I'm going to try to pick up the rest of the novellas. I'd never heard of Runtime or The Liar before this list but the other three were already on my radar.

By the way, is it just me or did 2016 seem to be the year for Lovecraft rewrites? Here we have The Ballad of Black Tom and The Dream-Quest of Vellitt Boe, and I've heard that Lovecraft Country is pretty good too. I assume that they happen all the time but they just seemed to stick out more last year.


message 6: by Nick (new)

Nick Imrie (nickimrie) | 339 comments Mod
Jon wrote: "did 2016 seem to be the year for Lovecraft rewrites? [...] I assume that they happen all the time but they just seemed to stick out more last year. "

It makes me happy because I am a sucker for a Lovecraft rewrite. It's such a fertile mythology that I find most people who play with it manage to produce something interesting.

Can I ask advice from anyone who has read a lot of N.K. Jemisin's work. I'm looking for a comparison between The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms and The Broken Gate Trilogy including The Obelisk Gate.

I found Kingdoms so dull that I have now utterly forgotten it and never read the rest of the trilogy. How does it compare to The Broken Gate? A lot of people are raving about Broken Gate and the books seem to be sweeping up prizes, so I really do want to give them a go - but if they're the same as Kingdoms then perhaps I'm just out of touch with general taste and won't like these either?


Rachel (Kalanadi) (kalanadi) Jon wrote: "By the way, is it just me or did 2016 seem to be the year for Lovecraft rewrites? Here we have The Ballad of Black Tom and The Dream-Quest of Vellitt Boe, and I've heard that Lovecraft Country is pretty good too. I assume that they happen all the time but they just seemed to stick out more last year."

I've noticed this too. I wondered if Lovecraft's work had finally all come into the public domain? Interesting, too, that these works may have been in development during the big discussion about removing Lovecraft's image from the World Fantasy Award. Or... it could be coincidence!

Nick wrote: "Can I ask advice from anyone who has read a lot of N.K. Jemisin's work. I'm looking for a comparison between The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms and The Broken Gate Trilogy including The Obelisk Gate."

I think they are completely different - even if you didn't like Kingdoms, I recommend trying The Fifth Season and The Obelisk Gate. Kingdoms (as I recall) was much more mythological, had a major romantic element, and some shaky uses of experimental language. Jemisin was a newbie author at the time. The Fifth Season is, to my mind, a little more SFnal than fantasy, in a completely different and much harsher world, and filled with more... rage? It's really about the end of the world. I know some people have been disappointed in Kingdoms and went on to love The Fifth Season. If that helps at all?


message 8: by Nick (new)

Nick Imrie (nickimrie) | 339 comments Mod
Thanks, very helpful! I will definitely give it a go. I remember the romantic element of Kingdoms not working for me, so hopefully Fifth Season will work better.


message 9: by Jon (new)

Jon | 346 comments Mod
The Kindle edition of The Healer's War: A Fantasy Novel of Vietnam is on sale on Amazon today for $1.99. I don't know if this only works for the US or not. This won the Nebula Award in 1989. Lois McMaster Bujold also won a Nebula Award that year for her novella The Mountains Of Mourning.


message 10: by Nick (new)

Nick Imrie (nickimrie) | 339 comments Mod
Boo, still £4.53 on Amazon.co.uk. :(

Oh well, it's not like my TBR pile isn't already big enough!


message 11: by Joe (new)

Joe (finalblowjoe) | 264 comments Mod
Last year before the Nebula's there was a Humble Bundle for Nebula winning authors and books, which included The Healer's War. I'm hoping there's something like it this year; for either Nebula or Hugo.


message 12: by Allen (new)

Allen Meece (allen_meece) | 2 comments The Nebula Trophies are glass trophies. There is no cash includeded in the award, just the trophy and the public acclaim of winning that glass trophy.
It costs $115 to join the awarding organization, the SFWA and they keep it all, not sharing it with the authors who win the prize. Sounds like a con job to me. I'm not renewing.


message 13: by Jon (new)

Jon | 346 comments Mod
The 2018 Nebula Finalists were announced today.

Novel -
The Calculating Stars
The Poppy War
Blackfish City
Spinning Silver
Witchmark
Trail of Lightning

The announcement and complete list of finalists can be found at nebulas.sfwa.org.

I've read The Calculating Stars and Trail of Lightning. I just got Witchmark for free from the Tor.com newsletter so I'll pick that up at some point. Unless one of them wins or someone/something else changes my mind none of the others are on my TBR.


message 14: by Nick (new)

Nick Imrie (nickimrie) | 339 comments Mod
Spinning Silver seems to be popping up on a lot of lists!


message 15: by Joe (new)

Joe (finalblowjoe) | 264 comments Mod
I loved The Calculating Stars and it's sequel but have not read any of the others. Spinning Silver I'm not surprised to see as it seems everywhere at the moment. The only one I have interest in is Trail Of Lightning.


message 16: by Jon (new)

Jon | 346 comments Mod
The 2018 Nebula Award winners were announced Saturday, May 18th.

Best Novel - The Calculating Stars By Mary Robinette Kowal

Best Novella - The Tea Master and the Detective by Aliette de Bodard

Best Novelette - The Only Harmless Great Thing by Brooke Bolander

Best Short Story - The Secret Lives of the Nine Negro Teeth of George Washington by P. Djèlí Clark

For the complete list of award winners you can go to sfwa.org.


message 17: by Nick (new)

Nick Imrie (nickimrie) | 339 comments Mod
Thanks Jon!

Time to get reading Mary Robinette Kowal. I've been seeing her name over the years but never got round to anything by her.


message 18: by Jon (new)

Jon | 346 comments Mod
I liked The Calculating Stars but I'm not in a rush to read the sequel or the short stories. I'm pretty sure that Joe enjoyed it more than I did.


message 19: by Jon (new)

Jon | 346 comments Mod
The Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA) announced the final ballot for the 2019 Nebula Awards today.

Novel
Marque of Caine
The Ten Thousand Doors of January
A Memory Called Empire
Gods of Jade and Shadow
Gideon the Ninth
A Song for a New Day

Additional categories include Novella, Novelette, Short Story, Game Writing, Ray Bradbury Award and Andre Norton Award. Winners will be announced Saturday, May 30, 2020 during the Nebula Awards Weekend.

I'll pass on the first two, I really liked A Memory Called Empire, I'm on the fence about Gods of Jade and Shadow, and I have a hold on Gideon the Ninth at my library. I seem to remember that the Sarah Pinsker had a bit of buzz before it's release but then it disappeared off of my radar. I don't know what to make of that.


message 20: by Nick (new)

Nick Imrie (nickimrie) | 339 comments Mod
Sarah Pinsker seems the most SFnal to me. The two other SF books seem a bit more space opera-ish - which always ends up being 'medieval political factions in space' in my experience!

I hate it when a book is nominated for best novel and it's Book 5 in a series (looking at you: Marque of Caine). There's no way I'm going to read 4 other books so I can make a fair judgement of this one. When I'm God-Emperor of the universe, only stand-alone books will be allowed as nominations for best novel awards.

I've seen a lot of hype about the Ten Thousand Doors of January - the Hugo and Nebula group have just finished readin it and they mostly approved.


message 21: by Jon (new)

Jon | 346 comments Mod
The Nebula Awards will be announced tonight, Saturday May 20th 2020. I read an interesting article (Blogging the Nebulas Predictions: Place Your Bets by Joel Cunningham) over on the Tor.com website. He ranks the novels based on what he thinks are their chances of winning.

I'll probably read all of these except for Marque of Caine this year so I'm a little more interested than usual.


message 22: by Jon (new)

Jon | 346 comments Mod
The 2019 Nebula Award winners were announced last night.

Best Novel
A Song for a New Day

Sarah Pinsker is having a pretty good awards year. I liked Sooner or Later Everything Falls Into the Sea and I'm looking forward to reading this one.


message 23: by Nick (new)

Nick Imrie (nickimrie) | 339 comments Mod
Do you suppose part of the win was because it turned out to be spookily prescient? Imagine publishing a book on a global pandemic just before that really happens - what are the odds?


message 24: by Jon (new)

Jon | 346 comments Mod
SFWA announced the finalists for the 2020 Nebula Awards last month. The awards will be presented on June 5th, 2021, during a virtual ceremony.

Novel
Piranesi - Susanna Clarke
The City We Became - N.K. Jemisin
Mexican Gothic - Silvia Moreno-Garcia
The Midnight Bargain - C.L. Polk
Black Sun - Rebecca Roanhorse
Network Effect - Martha Wells

Additional categories include Novella, Novelette, Short Story, Game Writing, Ray Bradbury Award and Andre Norton Award.

I have no interest in picking up Piranesi or Mexican Gothic although I'd read Mexican Gothic if it wins. I think The Midnight Bargain is the third book in a series so I won't be picking that up anytime soon. Black Sun is sitting on my shelf waiting to be read, pretty excited to get to that one. I liked The City We Became but Network Effect is easily my fav so far and would get my vote.


message 25: by Banshee (new)

Banshee (bansheethecat) | 3 comments Jon wrote: "I think The Midnight Bargain is the third book in a series so I won't be picking that up anytime soon."

I think you might be confusing this book with Soulstar. The author published both books fairly close to each other and I saw both of them on the lists of eligible novels for this year's awards. The Midnight Bargain is a standalone.


message 26: by Jon (new)

Jon | 346 comments Mod
Banshee wrote: I think you might be confusing this book with Soulstar.

Yup, you're absolutely right. That's what I get for not double checking. I have a copy of Witchmark that I think I picked up in one of Tor.com's giveaways. I want to read it but I just haven't gotten to it.


message 27: by Jon (new)

Jon | 346 comments Mod
The Nebula Award winners for 2020 were announced last night.

Best Novel
Network Effect by Martha Wells

You can find the rest of the winners on the SFWA website.


message 28: by Nick (new)

Nick Imrie (nickimrie) | 339 comments Mod
I love this sentence from the description of the novel: Come for the pew-pew space battles, stay for the most relatable A.I. you’ll read this century.


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