Hugo Award Nominees

hugologoI don’t know if you have seen it, but the 2014 Hugo Award Nominees list was released the other day. One of my new years reading resolutions was to read all the novel nominations on the Hugo list, so in this post I will take a look at the list. I also plan to read as many of the short stories as I can easily get my hands on. I have brought a supporting membership of Loncon, so I will be voting for the Hugos. So it is my plan to be able to vote (informed) in as many categories as possible.

So this is my look at the Hugo Award nominations list. I should be getting a readers package at some point so some of the non-free shorter works I might read that way. Continue reading

Reading: Chicks in Chainmail

Chicks in ChainmailTitle:  Chicks in Chainmail
Editor: 
Short story anthology
Genre: Humor, fantasy, portal fantasy, feminism, fairytale

I just got Chicks in Chainmail in the mail today, I ordered it after reading  great post On Influence. I wanted to read some of the older works in the genre (this is 20 years old by now) so I decided to order it. I am reading the stories as part of my  100 Short Stories in 2014 challenge.

Don’t let the cover fool you, this is a feminist book, but it is is feminism with a big smile on it’s face and a wink. It is clever and it is funny.

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12 space opera stories worth reading

spaceopera

Illustration by Chris McGrath

I don’t know about you, but I love a good space opera. I know faster than light travel will in all likelihood never happen but it makes for darn fine fiction. I grew up with Star Wars and a stack of middle grade science fiction books that didn’t give a darn about the science. I adored Firefly and whenever a space opera movie is running in the theaters I am there. Good space opera to me is all about the plot, the drama, the characters and not about the science of their spaceships. However really interesting space opera play with the implications on society of the world building they have set up. They ask the what-if questions of science fiction but doesn’t let the science slow down the story one bit. I have picked out the best I have read in the genre. I am drawn to strong female characters so expect those. I have mixed in books, comics and short stories and novellas. Enjoy!

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Half-Off Ragnarok

Half-off RagnarokTitle: Half-Off Ragnarok
Author:  Series: InCryptid, book 3
Genre: Urban fantasy

Let me start by saying that I enjoyed the book. I am yet to read a Seanan McGuire book that I did not enjoy. This was however not my favourite. The story line from a plot point of view, could easily have been a novella. That is not to say that I think there was a lot of filler. It just wasn’t a very complicated plot.

On the other hand the relationship between Alex and his college Shelby Tanner is front and center. It is a lovely courtship rather than a romance plot (not fake complications keeping them apart).

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The Creative Fire

The Creative FireTitle: The Creative Fire
Author: Series: Ruby’s Song, book 1
Genre: Science fiction, space, generation ship
Trigger warning: Rape

The Creative Fire is a book about a revolution. It is a book about growing up. It is a book about wanting and achieving change in an oppressive society. It is a book about the power of song.

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The Undead Pool

The Undead PoolTitle: The Undead Pool
Author: Series: The Hollows, book 12
Genre: Urban fantasy

This is one of the books I have been looking forward to the release of. And I was lucky enough that the audiobook came out at the same time as the paper book (yeah) so I could continue to listen the series rather than reading it.

I think this is one of the best urban fantasy series out there! Rachel Morgan the protagonist is such a wonderful character. She is so well-rounded. She got tons of flaws and makes mistakes but that just makes her human. She is not one of the flat “strong female characters” that sadly takes up too much of the genre.

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