August 18th, 2014

Yay, Hugos!

I was hoping Ann Leckie's Ancillary Justice would win the Hugo, but for some reason I felt certain that the Wheel of Time series would stomp on all the other novel nominees with a giant Monty Python-like foot.  Amazingly, though, Ancillary Justice ended up winning, and by what looks like a pretty big margin.  Before the voting deadline I was going to post something about how great the book was and urge people to read it, but all I could think of to say was, Hey, read this, no, really, right now, why are you still sitting there?

Having gotten my thoughts more together, I can say this: Every review I've read of Ancillary Justice makes a big deal about the fact that the default pronoun in the novel is female -- she, her -- and while this is a terrific stylistic choice and means you can't take any character's gender for granted, it's only a small part of the whole.  What Ancillary Justice is, is a terrific space opera, of the kind I haven't read in a long time.  The main character is a giant warship, for example, a ship that once had an enormous sensory apparatus but is now in a more-or-less human body.  Well, just go read it.  Right now.  No, really.

I'm also glad Sofia Samatar won the John W. Campbell Award.  Usually I end up grumbling about something after the awards are announced, but this time I agreed with nearly everything.  Maybe it was just a good year, or maybe the voters were especially discerning -- and by discerning I mean, "have the same taste I do."