Category: Hugo2019

  • Hugo 2019 Novelette Round Up

    I was going to start with a comparison with last year’s novelettes but weirdly, I don’t think I read last year’s novelettes. I don’t have any reviews of them and I just had a cryptic comment about them in one post. Why did I skip the novelettes? We will never know. It will be a […]


  • Hugo 2019 Novelettes: Nine Last Days on Planet Earth by Daryl Gregory

    Nine days over the period 1975 to 2062 in a very slow invasion of Earth. We meet LT as a child in Tennessee. An incredible meteor shower lights up the sky. “LT was ten years old, and he’d only seen one falling star in his life. Not even his mother had seen this many at […]

  • Hugo 2019 Novelettes: “If at First You Don’t Succeed, Try, Try, Again” by Zen Cho

    Byam is an imugi, a kind of Korean proto-dragon or water serpent creature. Byam hopes to reach a level of spiritual advancement to fully become an actual dragon and ascend to the sky but this is a difficult path and over hundreds of years, Byam experiences many setbacks in it’s quest. “If you wanted to […]

  • Hugo 2019 Novelettes: “The Thing About Ghost Stories” by Naomi Kritzer

    Leah is a researcher who collects ghost stories. Not artfully crafted spooky tales but rather the stories ordinary people have of encounters with things that they felt were supernatural. The most interesting thing about ghost stories is that almost everyone has one. The other really interesting thing, to me, is that they’re nearly all terrible […]

  • Hugo 2019 Novelettes: When We Were Starless by Simone Heller

    In a clouded, toxic and blasted world, a nomadic tribe does it’s utmost to survive. Mink is a scout, looking for the remnants of an old world to scavenge, while the tribe evades monstrous centipedes and ghosts. “The run-in with the rustbreed had not been my fault. I was a good enough scout—I scoured inaccessible […]

  • Currently Listening/Reading To: Children of Ruin by Adrian Tchaikovsky + Hugo Novelettes

    I wasn’t supposed to start something new until I’d finished all my Hugo reading and I have the most recent Expanse book sitting right there on my Kindle like an avatar of temptation. But, I needed an audio book because I was doing garden stuff and my finger just pressed the ‘buy’ button. Anyway, so […]

  • Hugo 2019 Novella Round-Up

    Collectively, we have a set of stories with clever plots, fascinating characters, interesting settings and well-crafted prose. Individually, I’m not convinced that all of these stories are successful novellas. I don’t mean ‘commercially successful’, I mean that some of the stories didn’t really fit into the space they were delivered in. Of the six finalists, […]

  • Hugo 2019 Novellas: The Black God’s Drums by P. Djèlí Clark

    In P. Djèlí Clark’s short story, The Secret Lives of the Nine Negro Teeth of George Washington, we were given glimpses into a panoply of other worlds and alternate visions of America. The Black God’s Drums offers a longer vision of another world: a steampunk New Orleans. Here America is a fractured land, divided by […]

  • Hugo 2019 Novellas: The Tea Master & The Detective by Aliette de Bodard

    I am always on-board for a good Sherlock Holmes pastiche. The nature of analogy and structure of ideas is something that fascinates me and the way writers can play on the elements of Holmes to create quite different texts that are nonetheless recognisable parts of the sub-genre. There is a deep aspect of sentience, art […]

  • Hugo 2019 Novellas: Gods, Monsters, and the Lucky Peach by Kelly Robson

    A few hundred years in the future, humanity has retreated underground apart from a small number of people who are trying to reclaim the Earth’s surface via ecological restoration projects. This a world of complex future technology and body modification but also one in which the mundane reality of project timelines, quotes, tenders and convincing […]