Saturday, August 9, 2008

2008 Hugo Award Finalists

Location: Denvention 3 in Denver, Colorado.

Comments: In 2008, the alternate history novel The Yiddish Policeman's Union won the Hugo Award for Best Novel. The novel, which posits that the United States established a refuge for Jews fleeing Europe in Alaska in 1941, has no science fiction element other than the changed course of history. I like alternate history, and writers like Harry Turtledove are among my favorite authors, but alternate history, without more, is simply not science fiction. And it seems like a shame to waste an award aimed at honoring science fiction and fantasy upon a book that is simply not within those genres. I don't dislike The Yiddish Policeman's Union, I just don't think it should have won the Hugo Award over the various actual science fiction novels that were nominated against it.

In other categories, a Neil Gaiman property returned to the Hugo winner's circle as the movie adaptation of Stardust won the Best Long Form Dramatic Presentation category, and Doctor Who continued its domination of the Short Form category with a win for its episode Blink. Doctor Who dominated the category, garnering a second nomination for its two part story Human Nature and The Family of Blood, while the Doctor Who spin-off Torchwood took up one of the remaining three nomination slots with its episode Captain Jack Harkness. I've said this before, but having a single property dominate an award category the way Doctor Who has dominated the Short Form Dramatic Presentation Hugo is not healthy, either for the award, or for televised science fiction.

Best Novel

The Yiddish Policemen's Union by Michael Chabon

Other Finalists:
Brasyl by Ian McDonald
Halting State by Charles Stross
The Last Colony by John Scalzi
Rollback by Robert J. Sawyer

Best Novella

All Seated on the Ground by Connie Willis

Other Finalists:
The Fountain of Age by Nancy Kress
Memorare by Gene Wolfe
Recovering Apollo 8 by Kristine Kathryn Rusch
Stars Seen Through Stone by Lucius Shepard

Best Novelette

The Merchant and the Alchemist's Gate by Ted Chiang

Other Finalists:
The Cambist and Lord Iron: A Fairy Tale of Economics by Daniel Abraham
Dark Integers by Greg Egan
Finisterra by David Moles
Glory by Greg Egan

Best Short Story

Tideline by Elizabeth Bear

Other Finalists:
Distant Replay by Mike Resnick
Last Contact by Stephen Baxter
A Small Room in Koboldtown by Michael Swanwick
Who's Afraid of Wolf 359? by Ken MacLeod

Best Nonfiction, Related, or Reference Work

Brave New Words: The Oxford Dictionary of Science Fiction by Jeff Prucher

Other Finalists:
The Arrival by Shaun Tan
Breakfast in the Ruins: Science Fiction in the Last Millennium by Barry N. Malzberg
The Company They Keep: C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien as Writers in Community by Diana Pavlac Glyer
Emshwiller: Infinity x Two by Luis Ortiz

Best Dramatic Presentation: Long Form


Other Finalists:
The Golden Compass
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
Heroes, Season 1

Best Dramatic Presentation: Short Form

Doctor Who: Blink

Other Finalists:
Battlestar Galactica: Razor
Doctor Who: Human Nature and The Family of Blood
Star Trek New Voyages: World Enough and Time
Torchwood: Captain Jack Harkness

Best Professional Editor: Short Form

Gordon van Gelder

Other Finalists:
Ellen Datlow
Stanley Schmidt
Jonathan Strahan
Sheila Williams

Best Professional Editor: Long Form

David G. Hartwell

Other Finalists:
Lou Anders
Ginjer Buchanan
Patrick Nielsen Hayden
Beth Meacham

Best Professional Artist

Stephan Martiniere

Other Finalists:
Bob Eggleton
Phil Foglio
John Harris
John Picacio
Shaun Tan

Best Semi-Prozine

Locus edited by Charles N. Brown, Kirsten Gong-Wong, and Liza Groen Trombi

Other Finalists:
Ansible edited by Dave Langford
Helix SF edited by William Sanders and Lawrence Watt-Evans
Interzone edited by Andy Cox
The New York Review of Science Fiction edited by Kathryn Cramer, Kristine Dikeman, David G. Hartwell, and Kevin J. Maroney

Best Fanzine

File 770 edited by Mike Glyer

Other Finalists:
Argentus edited by Steven H Silver
Challenger edited by Guy H. Lillian, III
Drink Tank edited by Chris Garcia
Plokta edited by Steve Davies, Alison Scott, and Mike Scott

Best Fan Writer


Other Finalists:
Chris Garcia
Dave Langford
Cheryl Morgan
Steven H Silver

Best Fan Artist

Brad Foster

Other Finalists:
Teddy Harvia
Sue Mason
Steve Stiles
Taral Wayne

John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer

Mary Robinette Kowal

Other Finalists:
Joe Abercrombie
Jon Armstrong
David Anthony Durham
David Louis Edelman
Scott Lynch

What Are the Hugo Awards?

Go to previous year's finalists: 2007
Go to subsequent year's finalists: 2009

2008 Hugo Longlist     Book Award Reviews     Home

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