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Science Fiction & Fantasy Farscape, Babylon 5, Star Wars, Firefly, vampires, genre books and film.

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Old July 29 2013, 08:51 PM   #1
dansigal
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2013 Hugo Nominees

Is anyone following the Hugo nominees for best novel in 2012?

I'm trying to get through all of them before the winner is announced at the end of August. So far I have been slightly underwhelmed:

Redshirts - I actually enjoyed this book a ton for most of it. Very tongue in cheek, very funny for any Star Trek fan. It was a little short though and I disliked the way it ended, which kind of left a bit of a sour taste in my mouth. I thought it could have been a bit more developed.

Throne of the Crescent Moon - Solid book but didn't really blow me away. I like Arab fantasy, though I admit I don't read much of it. It's the first in a series, and while I like the world and I see the potential, it felt more like set up for a bigger story than a story in itself.

2312 - Reading this book has been agony. It is hard hard science fiction, with often long drawn out explanations of the speculative science which I simply do not care about. To be fair, I haven't finished it yet, I've made it through 400/560 pages before I had to take a break and move on to something else. But I've found the characters and plot completely uninteresting and dull.

Deadline - This book is the third in a zombie trilogy which I had not read. I haven't gotten to it yet, but I'm about half way through the second book. However, if Deadline is anywhere near the quality of the first two, its a runaway winner for my favorite of the lot. Fast paced plotting and story. A very interesting and well developed zombie scenario. Plus fun and interesting characters.

Captain Vorpatril’s Alliance - Opted not to read this one because its like the 15th book in a series, and that's not a commitment I was prepared to take on, so I can't speak to its quality.
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Old July 30 2013, 01:40 AM   #2
theenglish
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Re: 2013 Hugo Nominees

I would be curious in hearing other peoples opinions if they have read any of these books.
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Old July 30 2013, 01:56 AM   #3
Snaploud
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Re: 2013 Hugo Nominees

dansigal wrote: View Post
Deadline - This book is the third in a zombie trilogy which I had not read. I haven't gotten to it yet, but I'm about half way through the second book. However, if Deadline is anywhere near the quality of the first two, its a runaway winner for my favorite of the lot. Fast paced plotting and story. A very interesting and well developed zombie scenario. Plus fun and interesting characters.
I just looked up this series. Blackout (book three) is the novel that got nominated for a Hugo in 2013. Deadline is the second book in the trilogy.
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Old July 30 2013, 02:19 AM   #4
Pavonis
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Re: 2013 Hugo Nominees

I'm looking forward to 2312 but won't be getting to it for a few months. I've always enjoyed hard sci-fi, especially KSR's stuff. I've read other reviews callin it tedious and boring, but that just tells me I'll love it.
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Old July 30 2013, 04:06 AM   #5
dansigal
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Re: 2013 Hugo Nominees

Snaploud wrote: View Post
dansigal wrote: View Post
Deadline - This book is the third in a zombie trilogy which I had not read. I haven't gotten to it yet, but I'm about half way through the second book. However, if Deadline is anywhere near the quality of the first two, its a runaway winner for my favorite of the lot. Fast paced plotting and story. A very interesting and well developed zombie scenario. Plus fun and interesting characters.
I just looked up this series. Blackout (book three) is the novel that got nominated for a Hugo in 2013. Deadline is the second book in the trilogy.
Yes, I continue to mix those two up even though I am literally reading Deadline right now. Blackout is the third book
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Old July 30 2013, 12:49 PM   #6
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Re: 2013 Hugo Nominees

I've read all the Vorkosigan books besides Captain Vorpatril's Alliance, but I keep meaning to get to that.

Although as far as books from long-running series go, I'm surprised Hydrogen Sonata didn't make the cut. It's a very solid novel and obviously the last Culture book Banks will ever write.
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Old July 31 2013, 12:07 AM   #7
Snaploud
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Re: 2013 Hugo Nominees

Captain Vorpatril's Alliance is a good book. It's certainly worthy of the series. Redshirts was fun but tended have trouble near the end. I haven't read the others yet.
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Old July 31 2013, 04:56 PM   #8
Mistral
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Re: 2013 Hugo Nominees

Redshirts was a disappointment and shouldn't even be up for the award. Sadly, it will probably fight Captain Vorpatril’s Alliance for the top spot just because science fiction is so over-saturated with sequels and hack novels by popular authors. Was Osama a 2012 release? Because if not, it deserved a nod.
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Old July 31 2013, 05:26 PM   #9
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Re: 2013 Hugo Nominees

I loved 2312 from cover to cover. I'm sure it helps that I love the hard science-fiction aspect of it, but it also had a gorgeous story surrounding a fascinating and mysterious character. I loved the "globetrotting" around the solar system and the miniscule connections to Robinson's Mars trilogy (although I don't think I spot any references to Galileo's Dreams which has a couple of connections to the trilogy as well). I think it also helped that I often listened to the Blade Runner score while reading the novel which I found to be a beautiful backdrop to Robinson's little universe.
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Old July 31 2013, 10:22 PM   #10
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Re: 2013 Hugo Nominees

Redshirts was a letdown after the wait. The Star Trek parody stuff is great, but it kind of meanders away from the plot several times. I've been trying to get ahold of the novel After the Fall, Before the Fall, During the Fall, but I'm not paying full price for a novella.
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Old August 1 2013, 01:26 PM   #11
Kegg
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Re: 2013 Hugo Nominees

Mistral wrote: View Post
Redshirts was a disappointment and shouldn't even be up for the award. Sadly, it will probably fight Captain Vorpatril’s Alliance for the top spot just because science fiction is so over-saturated with sequels and hack novels by popular authors. Was Osama a 2012 release? Because if not, it deserved a nod.
I think so. But it's already won the World Fantasy Award, so cry not for Lavie Tidhar.

Even with the presence of Crescent Moon though Hugo does seem to be weighted towards SF titles, which is fine given its history.
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Old August 1 2013, 02:59 PM   #12
dansigal
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Re: 2013 Hugo Nominees

[QUOTE=Kegg;8454004]
Mistral wrote: View Post

Even with the presence of Crescent Moon though Hugo does seem to be weighted towards SF titles, which is fine given its history.
Well Blackout is zombie with a viral explanation, so probably a mix between scif fi and fantasy. Plus last year's winner was fantasy.
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Old August 1 2013, 05:59 PM   #13
Mistral
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Re: 2013 Hugo Nominees

[QUOTE=dansigal;8454319]
Kegg wrote: View Post
Mistral wrote: View Post

Even with the presence of Crescent Moon though Hugo does seem to be weighted towards SF titles, which is fine given its history.
Well Blackout is zombie with a viral explanation, so probably a mix between scif fi and fantasy. Plus last year's winner was fantasy.
That's not me. Edit is off a bit...
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Old August 1 2013, 07:18 PM   #14
Owain Taggart
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Re: 2013 Hugo Nominees

Starbreaker wrote: View Post
Redshirts was a letdown after the wait. The Star Trek parody stuff is great, but it kind of meanders away from the plot several times.

Yeah, the concept itself was fun, but its execution was terrible, almost as if he didn't know what to do with it. And the ending was rather abrupt. The codas themselves were technically fine, but as a whole, they really went against the flow of the rest of the story and felt rather disjointed.
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Old August 7 2013, 06:24 PM   #15
dansigal
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Re: 2013 Hugo Nominees

Well I finally finished 2312. The best thing I can say is that the last 150 pages were better than the first 400, but it was still my least favorite of the nominees. The book is clearly well researched and well written, and I can certainly credit KSR for imaginative world building, but the problem is that plot and character take a back seat to all of that, and at the end of the day, plot and character are the things that I care about in a book.
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