2019 Hugo Award Highlights

Over the weekend, the 77th WorldCon commenced in Dublin, featuring speakers, panels, and best of all, the announcement of the Hugo Award Winners. 

The winner for this year’s Hugo for Best Novel goes The Calculating Stars by Mary Robinette Kowal. This alternate history takes place in a completely different 1950s. During the presidency of Thomas Dewey, a meteor strikes near the east coast, prompting a wave of space exploration from the surviving United States military and government figures. The story follows Elma York, a female fighter pilot from World War II, who becomes one of America’s first astronauts and last hopes for survival. This is also the first book in the Lady Astronaut series.

But there’s a Best Series Hugo as well. This year, it goes to Becky Chambers for her Wayfarers series that began with A Long Way to a Small Angry Planet and include Best Novel nominee Record of a Spaceborn Few. This space opera series, funded initially by fan backers on Kickstarter, follows Rosemary Harper, Lovey, Tessa, Ashby and other rich characters as they travel throughout the cosmos, on the run from their pasts.

The winner for the Best Short Story category can still be found online at Apex Magazine’s website. Alix E. Harrow’s “A Witch’s Guide to Escape: A Practical Compendium of Portal Fantasies” is a paean to spending time at the library and escaping into fantasy books, with special emphasis on youth facing a harsh foster system. Apex even includes an interview with the writer for more behind-the-scenes goodies. Fellow internet-born content won the Best Novelette and Best Novella categories. Zen Cho’s novelette, “If at First You Don’t Succeed, Try Again” can be found and downloaded for free at Barnes & Noble Sci-Fi Blog. Meanwhile, Best Novella winner Martha Wells’s Artificial Condition can be found in part on tor.com. This novella supplements her larger Murderbot Diaries series.

Image Comics takes home the Hugo Award for Best Graphic Story with Monstress, Vol. 3 by Marjorie Liu. Monstress follows the adventures of Maika Halfwolf through an ambitiously worldbuilt fantasy landscape that is beautifully illustrated. Marvel Comics’ computer-animated Spider-Man Into the Spider-Verse beat out its competitors in order to win in the Best Dramatic Long Form category. The winner of the Best Dramatic Short Form comes from an episode of The Good Place, “Janet(s).” 

In the Best Editor categories, the awards go to names familiar to us here at The Game of Nerds. The late, great editor Gardner Dozois won the Short Form category. Dozois had been a driving force in the genre for years and passed away in May 2018. His award comes as a fitting end to a long, prolific career. In the Long Form category, the winner, Navah Wolfe, edited one of our 2018 Best Books, Robots vs. Fairies, but the long list of books she’s edited is way too long to include here.

A complete list can be found at The Hugo Awards website!

 

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Cover of Graphic Story Winner Monstress, Vol. 3! Photo courtesy of Amazon.com
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Author: Aaron Heil

Follow Aaron on Twitter @AaronJamHeil or see all the different stuff he's into on Goodreads.

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