Hugo & Nebula Awards: Best Novels discussion

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message 1: by Art, Stay home, stay safe. (last edited May 15, 2018 06:13PM) (new)

Art | 2546 comments Mod
Dear members,

First of all we welcome all our new group members and thank the more seasoned ones for the patronage. The group's grown considerably and though there are still plenty of creases to iron out, we are not stopping there! There is one more feature that Goodreads boasts, one that we are planning to exploit as any other tool available to us on the website and that would be the Challenges.

Hugo & Nebula Award nominees and winners feature a multitude of books that belong to a myriad of series of various length. In order to be able to tackle those as well as the standalone novels we have compiled a list of series with details on which of the books won the awards and which are related works which must be read in order to enjoy any particular series. Here's the link to that page: Series Guide

Some of the series have an overwhelming amount of related works and would lead us astray from our goal of reading all the award-winning titles. Those series will be featuring more prominently that others in our Challenges. The goal of any particular Challenge is to finish a predetermined amount of books within a set amount of time. However we will try to get a reward system up and running, which in future might also include Gift Cards and Promotional Codes.

Here's the outline of the basic rules:

- A series of books featuring in the upcoming Challenge will be either voted on by members or determined by one of the moderators.

- The amount of pages (and naturally books) in any certain challenge will be announced and weighed into the decision for a time frame in which the challenge is to be completed.

- Every successful completion of a Challenge by a member will be rewarded, the reward itself will be determined and announced in the Challenge description.

- Every member who completes any of our group Challenges will earn "Enhanced Nomination Credits" (ENC) which can later be traded in to bypass a poll. In other words, after earning one ENC the member can use his (or her) credit in order to bypass the voting of any book that is featured in the Monthly Read poll. Your Enhanced Nomination Credit will secure any title you voted for as our Monthly Read.

- Only one ENC at a time may be used by a member per month.

- Comments, suggestions and any wild ideas proposed by members are both welcome and encouraged. Let us know how else we can make our challenges exciting and help us editing the rules as we go.



message 2: by Bryan, Village Idiot (new)

Bryan | 480 comments Mod
To start the challenge, you just need to put how many books you want to commit to reading with the challenge. There are 7 books total...only 6 are showing at this time, because we found another one (Thanks for keeping us honest, Kate!)

After you put how many books you want to commit to, it will then have you make a folder you want to link up with this challenge (I named my Earthsea Cycle Challenge because I'm SUPER original!)

After the folder is made, then you just put the book you've read in that folder, which can be done when you edit any book in your bookshelves. I usually update mine when I finish it. I put the date that I finished it and I'll put it in any folders I want it to be in (like my favorite books, ex)

If you have any other questions, feel free to ask!


message 3: by Art, Stay home, stay safe. (new)

Art | 2546 comments Mod
I have updated the current challenge with that one extra title, it's only just 32 pages long. I've also added it as an optional read and completion of either 6 or 7 books will both yield you a reward.

In case anybody still has any questions refarding the ENCs, feel free to ask.


message 4: by Bryan, Village Idiot (new)

Bryan | 480 comments Mod
Just got the first book A Wizard of Earthsea! Hope to start this challenge soon!

Also, I don't see it being specifically said, so I just wanted everyone to know. Us, Mods, will participate in the challenge but will not be eligible for any of the prizes. Probably not something anyone was concerned about, but just wanted to make it clear.


message 5: by Art, Stay home, stay safe. (new)

Art | 2546 comments Mod
There's one more thing to be said about the challenges, every member can put forward a series that we can read as a separate challenge. If there is any series you feel like you've been putting off for too long and want to get off your reading list, feel free to nominate it as a challenge.

I for instance have two series I've been meaning to read since ages ago and those are The Foundation and The Amber Chronicles (which never got any of the awards). So I am looking forward to at least getting the Foundation out of the way in the future.

Feel free to let us know your suggestions.


message 6: by Kateblue, 2nd star to the right and straight on til morning (new)

Kateblue | 4070 comments Mod
I want to read the Dragon books by Anne McCaffery that we decided were relevant to the group (because there are a lot of the Dragon series that you don't have to read to understand the ones that I have already read. But I have not read the last one of them, and I really want to. And I wouldn't mind reading the others again.


message 7: by Kateblue, 2nd star to the right and straight on til morning (new)

Kateblue | 4070 comments Mod
well. boys and girls, I am going to read these books out of order because it is going to be forever before I get A Wizard of Earthsea from the library.

I write about this because, having read the first three before, I think I should tell you all that I think the first 3 can be read independently. Though they are the saga of one guy, and they happen at different times in his life, I remember that they are pretty self contained. So I am going to start with The Farthest Shore, then Tehanu, and then The Daughter of Odren, all of which I can get from the library now because there are no holds on them. The others, I hope I can get before September 15.

Good reading!


message 8: by Kateblue, 2nd star to the right and straight on til morning (new)

Kateblue | 4070 comments Mod
OK, I actually have started now, with the Tombs of Atuan. NOTE that there are NO maps in the Kindle version. There were in the book.

You can find them here . . . the first two pictures. Hope this helps.

https://www.google.com/search?q=The+t...


message 9: by Art, Stay home, stay safe. (new)

Art | 2546 comments Mod
Wanted to remind everyone participating in challenge events that every time you add a book completed for a challenge, a date of completion must be assigned. Pressing "Set to today" does the trick for me, otherwise it gets bugged and does not count towards the challenge progression.


message 10: by Kateblue, 2nd star to the right and straight on til morning (new)

Kateblue | 4070 comments Mod
Hey, Art and Bryan. Can you please set up discussion groups for this challenge? I am 3/4 of the way through the last book. And the first book, which just showed up from the library, FINALLY, I read half of last fall, so reading that part again will be REALLY fast.

So almost done!

I hate to just post stuff here because of spoilers, but if that is the way it should be, ok!


message 11: by Art, Stay home, stay safe. (new)

Art | 2546 comments Mod
Kate, we've already got two threads going, you migjt've missed them because they are located in a separate folder.

In any case there are the links:
https://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/...

And

https://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/...

One for spoiler free posts and one for everything else.


message 12: by Kateblue, 2nd star to the right and straight on til morning (new)

Kateblue | 4070 comments Mod
this is weird because I obviously posted there before. I just did not scroll down far enough the last couple of posts . . . sorry!


message 13: by Laura (new)

Laura (lauradragonchild) | 10 comments Hi everyone. I am new here and still stumbling around. What do we do if we want to participate in the challenge but have already read some of the books included in it? Do those already read books count or do we have to reread them?

And I noticed a great list with award winning titles on 2 other threads. Are those also part of a challenge? If yes on which thread do I have to go to sign up for it?
Hope it's ok to ask about it over here.


message 14: by Art, Stay home, stay safe. (last edited Jul 15, 2018 07:21PM) (new)

Art | 2546 comments Mod
Hi again Laura, feel free to ask any question you like. The challenge is relatively easy to join, but adding read books might be slightly complicated.

First things first, go to Challenges and enter the amount of books you are planning to read, that will prompt you a small window where you are asked to name the folder(bookshelf) you want to use to keep track of the books you've already read. Just make a new shelf, "Earthsea Challenge" will do unless you feel extremely inspired to think of a better name.

Second step is adding the books you've already read, which is slightly more complex. You have to find the book you've read and add it to the shelf you designated in the challenge tab. For it to register as completed, make sure you've added the "Date Read", otherwise you are risking it not being counted.

Try these two steps and see if you can get it working, if not just keep writing here or in the challenges thread and we will do our best to help you out.

Sorry, I am writing this from my phone so adding all the useful links is just too cumbersome and I'm not entirely up to the task!

Besides the challenge we have monthly reads, those we change every month (duh!) and keep everyone appraised as to what we are reading a month from now. The books we are reading now are Chalion 1&2, next month we have Philip K.Dick and other legends of sci-fi as you can see in our "Upcoming Reads" section.

Besides that, in this thread here: https://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/... we are nominating books for the month of September, in case you want to throw your hat into the ring. We will be moving to the 2nd stage next week, a poll where we determine our reads by voting.

There is much more going on in this group, we were blessed with awesome members who keep the group exciting and we appreciate everyone's involvement in steering the group's direction. Feel free to browse our "Guidelines" section to get the general feeling of what is up in the group, but if you don't, there's no trouble. It's mostly boring explanations of how we operate here and what features this group has, like our "themed" bookshelves and "series" which are absolutely fantastic due to members like Kateblue who helped us steer in the right direction. The Earthsea Challenge would not have existed if it wasn't for her.

Enjoy and have fun, now that's an order!

*edited* 3671 typos.


message 15: by Laura (new)

Laura (lauradragonchild) | 10 comments Art wrote: "Hi again Laura, feel free to ask

Enjoy and have fun, now that's an order!


Aye aye sir!!! 😊



message 16: by Art, Stay home, stay safe. (new)

Art | 2546 comments Mod
Let me know if you are still struggling to join our current challenge. We will try and think of something.


message 17: by Laura (new)

Laura (lauradragonchild) | 10 comments I'm waiting for my WiFi to start working again so I can get on the comp to add the shelf and books. :) It should be fixed today or tomorrow. And I'll probably pester you again afterwards to check if I did it right. :D


message 18: by Art, Stay home, stay safe. (last edited Sep 17, 2018 05:01PM) (new)

Art | 2546 comments Mod
Congratulations everyone on completing our first group challenge, the total result is 35 read books between all the participants.

Once again big fat thanks goes out to Kateblue for providing all the info on the series.

More challenges are bound to come sooner or later, if you have any suggestions, please post here.

Feel free to browse our series section, where you can find whatever info we've compiled on all the award-winning series.


message 19: by Art, Stay home, stay safe. (new)

Art | 2546 comments Mod
Seems like 2019 will be a rather fruitful year in terms of challenges, we have a whole array of miniseries that celebrate their anniversaries next year. We will be putting up a poll picking our first challenge of the upcoming year, don't forget to cast your vote!


message 20: by Art, Stay home, stay safe. (new)

Art | 2546 comments Mod
The first challenge of 2019 has been decided upon, Dune Chronicles won overwhelmengly, getting more than twice the votes than the next contestant.

Here's the list of the books that will feature in that challenge, so everyone can start ordering and booking their copies:

Dune Chronicles by Frank Herbert Total pages: 1,796

Dune - 604pg HWBN NWBN
Dune Messiah - 330pg
Children of Dune - 408pg HNBN
God Emperor of Dune - 454pg

The date for the challenge is still to be determined.


message 21: by Art, Stay home, stay safe. (new)

Art | 2546 comments Mod
Would like to remind everyone that our current 2001: Space Odyssey challenge is still active and can be found using this link: 2001: Space Odyssey
All the new members who have already read both the novels are welcome to claim the reward.


message 22: by Art, Stay home, stay safe. (last edited Mar 06, 2019 08:32PM) (new)

Art | 2546 comments Mod
Our next Challenge's been picked. It will be a series named The Imperial Radch, here is the reading list for the challenge which will start on April 1st:

Imperial Radch by Ann Leckie Total pages: 1,072

Ancillary Justice - 386pg HWBN NWBN
Ancillary Sword - 356pg HNBN NNBN
Ancillary Mercy - 330pg HNBN NNBN


message 23: by Kateblue, 2nd star to the right and straight on til morning (new)

Kateblue | 4070 comments Mod
Yay!


message 24: by Allan (new)

Allan Phillips | 2353 comments Mod
Not to jump the gun but I think our Q3 challenge should be a William Gibson challenge, commemorating his elevation to grandmaster!


message 25: by Art, Stay home, stay safe. (new)

Art | 2546 comments Mod
Allan wrote: "Not to jump the gun but I think our Q3 challenge should be a William Gibson challenge, commemorating his elevation to grandmaster!"

Count me in!

It's been years that I waited to get my hands on Sprawl.


message 26: by Atl (new)

Atl (dark_leo) | 115 comments Art wrote: "Allan wrote: "Not to jump the gun but I think our Q3 challenge should be a William Gibson challenge, commemorating his elevation to grandmaster!"

Count me in!

It's been years that I waited to get..."

I actually had a copy of Necromancer that I lent to my now ex fiance, so now I really have to get it back.


message 27: by Oleksandr, a.k.a. Acorn (new)

Oleksandr Zholud | 3992 comments Mod
I agree on Gibson but I guess we can vote closer to the date if other options arise


message 28: by Allan (new)

Allan Phillips | 2353 comments Mod
Just throwing it out there, I imagine there will be other ideas. I read Neuromancer a long time ago but that's one I don't remember. I did find a copy of Burning Chrome at the big HPB, and seeing the new Radtch challenge, it popped into my head.


message 29: by Art, Stay home, stay safe. (new)

Art | 2546 comments Mod
Allan wrote: "Just throwing it out there, I imagine there will be other ideas. I read Neuromancer a long time ago but that's one I don't remember. I did find a copy of Burning Chrome at the big HPB, and seeing t..."

Sprawl is celebrating its anniversary and we were planning to tackle it this year.


message 30: by Art, Stay home, stay safe. (new)

Art | 2546 comments Mod
Everyone please make sure that you've updated your Challenge book count, or in those cases where you don't feel like creating extra shelves for every challenge, just let me know how many titles you cleared.
In a week I will be updating the ENC count from the Dune Challenge, so I want to make sure everyone gets their reward.


message 31: by Art, Stay home, stay safe. (new)

Art | 2546 comments Mod
We opened the Earth Day Challenge, everyone is welcome to take their time though, it's on until end of May.


message 32: by Art, Stay home, stay safe. (new)

Art | 2546 comments Mod
The Monthly Read that people voted in for the month of May, The Three-Body Problem is a part of a larger miniseries.

Remembrance of the Earth's Past by Liu Cixin Total pages: 1,516

The Three-Body Problem - 400pg HWBN NNBN
The Dark Forest - 512pg
Death's End - 604pg HNBN

Since one of the books won no awards, we will be reading the remaining two novels as a Challenge in June - July.

The Challenge will consist of 2nd and 3rd volumes of the trilogy, as for the reward, we are still deciding that. So go get your copies if you want to join us in the Completionist Challenge.


message 33: by Allan (new)

Allan Phillips | 2353 comments Mod
I have a lot of books lined up so I'm not sure about this challenge, but I'll read Three Body and see what I can do then.


message 34: by Art, Stay home, stay safe. (last edited May 01, 2019 08:19PM) (new)

Art | 2546 comments Mod
Allan wrote: "I have a lot of books lined up so I'm not sure about this challenge, but I'll read Three Body and see what I can do then."

This challenge will be active through June and July, so it's three months that we've got.

I know what you mean about backlog of reading material though. Fingers crossed for someone ENCing a 150page book for July!


message 35: by Art, Stay home, stay safe. (last edited May 09, 2019 06:09PM) (new)

Art | 2546 comments Mod
Here's the list of reading material for the upcoming Completionist Challenge:

Remembrance of the Earth's Past by Liu Cixin Total pages: 1,516 1,116

The Three-Body Problem - 400pg HWBN NNBN
The Dark Forest - 512pg
Death's End - 604pg HNBN

Depending on our Monthly Read winners we might extend the completion date somewhat.


message 36: by Rebecca (new)

Rebecca | 97 comments Looked at the short/very short/extremely short, and it made me wonder if anyone has charted page count to publication year. . . I would suspect that the more recent the book, the more likely it has a lot of pages.


message 37: by Allan (new)

Allan Phillips | 2353 comments Mod
I think that's generally true, but in large part because of the way the industry grew up. Short stories in the pulps, then mostly cramming their vast imaginations into small, 180-page packages. I still love these because the stories are so concisely packed, so concentrated. It wasn't till the 70's, post-Tolkien popularity maybe?, that authors really started getting more literary and not being afraid to get more broad in exercising their imaginations. In some cases, it worked, in others, it worked to excess (see VERY long reads). Writers are much more free now, not held down so much by convention or standard. Sometimes that's good, sometimes bad.


message 38: by Oleksandr, a.k.a. Acorn (new)

Oleksandr Zholud | 3992 comments Mod
Rebecca wrote: "I would suspect that the more recent the book, the more likely it has..."

Generally true. Herbet's Dune was dismissed by several publishers as too large but it is around average now. There are still short novels, but their share is smaller


message 39: by Art, Stay home, stay safe. (new)

Art | 2546 comments Mod
I prefer longer works, even a few extra pages expanding on the world surrounding the story or a bit of depth added to the characters, to me, add a lot of enjoyment from the read.
Unfortunately some of the newer serialized works are written in a way that seem to rehash the same thing all over again. As for instance in Imperial Radch Leckie must've said it 400 times that Breq was a ship/ancillary in 200 different ways, not giving the reader anything new and just stretching out the page count.


message 40: by Allan (new)

Allan Phillips | 2353 comments Mod
Yeah, that's the problem I see with (some) longer works. Too much opportunity to get wordy and redundant. Neal Stephenson, Connie Willis, Kim Stanley Robinson; great writers all, but come on, get to the point already. That's why I love the 200-pagers. They condense 400 pages of story into half the words and I think they are more effective for it.


message 41: by Kateblue, 2nd star to the right and straight on til morning (new)

Kateblue | 4070 comments Mod
I agree that the longer the length, the more wordy the book. Ditto with the repetition.

But what is worse is--I just quit a series not long where it seemed that there was a good book there, but it had been cut into 4 parts, and then each part had to waste time explaining what was going on. I gave up 20% into the second because it was just fighting and rehashing the first book. No forward motion at all.

I would rather have a long book that rehashes too much than a series of books that should have been one, which causes even worse rehashing. So Radch doesn't seem as repetitive as some to me.


message 42: by Rebecca (new)

Rebecca | 97 comments re the completionist challenge- book 4 is being released in July. . .


message 43: by Kalin (new)

Kalin | 856 comments Mod
If you mean The Redemption of Time, I'm not sure it counts as part of the trilogy. It looks like an "in universe" story by a different author.


message 44: by Allan (new)

Allan Phillips | 2353 comments Mod
Just wanted to post a reminder on setting up a Sprawl challenge. Would that be Q4 or maybe Oct-Nov? I was tempted to start re-reading Neuromancer - and I very rarely re-read anything.


message 45: by Oleksandr, a.k.a. Acorn (new)

Oleksandr Zholud | 3992 comments Mod
Allan wrote: "Just wanted to post a reminder on setting up a Sprawl challenge. Would that be Q4 or maybe Oct-Nov? I was tempted to start re-reading Neuromancer - and I very rarely re-read anything."

Thanks, Allan for the reminder!


message 46: by Kateblue, 2nd star to the right and straight on til morning (new)

Kateblue | 4070 comments Mod
Yes, we do need to set that up, but I am going to pretty much stay out of it since I distinctly disliked Neuromancer when I read it years ago. Of course, that was the start or the "glum about the future" movement, probably. Maybe I'm more used to it now.

When you set it, I will try Neuromancer again, but I may not complete it or go farther. No promises.


message 47: by Art, Stay home, stay safe. (last edited Mar 02, 2020 04:13PM) (new)

Art | 2546 comments Mod
Due to our Monthly Read The Fifth Season being a part of a trilogy, we will be reading the sequels as a part of the "Completionist Challenge"

We will most likely allocate at least a couple of months starting April for everyone to be able to join and finish the challenge.


message 48: by Art, Stay home, stay safe. (last edited Sep 04, 2020 07:48AM) (new)

Art | 2546 comments Mod
In October we will be tackling a new completionist challenge:

New Crobuzon by China Miéville Total pages: 1,777 1,154
Perdido Street Station - 623pg HNBN NNBN
The Scar - 578pg HNBN
Iron Council - 576pg HNBN


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