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It turns out, and this is a surprise to Your Humble Blogger, that at least a dozen novels have been Reported in this Tohu Bohu that, if YHB understands the rules correctly, were eligible for the Hugo. One of them has been nominated, or rather has become a Nominee, which isn’t quite the same thing, but better.

Anyway, I might possible read one or another of the other nominated novels before the end of the summer (although I really doubt I will read Charles Stross’ss’s book, since I read one and didn’t much like it, and read the acclaimed short story that I understand is the nut of the book, and didn’t much like it), and if so I will change my views accordingly. But I must say, at this point, I am a trifle shocked, just a bit more than surprised, by the list. I mean, of the ones I’ve read, I would not have guessed that OMW would be the one nominated, either on its merits or on the politics.

What was YHB’s favorite of them? Hmm. Honestly, I’m inclined to put Night Train to Rigel at the top of the list. I don’t know. I couldn’t say I enjoyed that one much more than OMW or Effendi. Wait a minute, I forgot one, I’m changing my tune. My favorite specfic book of 2005 (of the ones I actually read) was Magic Street. Which was pretty good, actually. Better than Anansi Boys, certainly, although I was surprised to see that one left off the final ballot. Oh, and a question: was Die Haarteppichknüpfer ineligible for the Hugo because it was a translation, and had been published earlier in its original language? That doesn’t seem fair. And was it eligible in the year it was published in German and then again when it was published in English? That doesn’t seem fair, either. Not that I liked it that much, anyway.

Oh, and here’s another question: why isn’t there a Hugo for best work aimed at the juvenile/YA market? I mean, I know that there isn’t any really good definition of that, and there would be all kinds of agita about qualifications, etc, etc, but there are loads of YA specfic books coming out every year, and although most of them are crap, so are most of the specfic novels for grupps, and the best of them are easily as good (imao) as the best of the books for grupps. Is it that somebody thinks that most Hugo voters don’t read YA novels? But then why have them vote on short stories?

chazak, chazak, v’nitchazek,

Edited to add: as of May 2006, my vote for Best Specfic Novel of 2005 is Never Let Me Go, with Magic Street falling back to a very distant second.

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