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Saturdays in Books

Reviews of speculative fiction, YA, middle grade, and graphic novels, along with stray thoughts, links, and pictures.

Currently reading

The SFWA European Hall of Fame: Sixteen Contemporary Masterpieces of Science Fiction from the Continent
Kathryn Morrow, James K. Morrow

2018 Hugo Ballot: Best Novelette

This is part of a series of posts reviewing categories in this year's Hugo ballot. I'll be discussing the entries, the voter packet, and my ballot. I've nominated and voted most years since 2011, when I figured out that all I had to do was join Worldcon to get to do so.


All available online for free, so I've included links.


  • Children of Thorns, Children of Water,” by Aliette de Bodard (Uncanny, July-August 2017) - I really like de Bodard's space faring short fiction, but this one is part of a series I'm just not in love with, and that's true for the short fiction as well as the novels. She's an excellent writer, but this isn't for me.


  • Extracurricular Activities,” by Yoon Ha Lee (Tor.com, February 15, 2017) - Set in the same universe as Ninefox Gambit and Raven Stratagem, I just wasn't in love with this adventure from our favorite mad strategist's past.


  • The Secret Life of Bots,” by Suzanne Palmer (Clarkesworld, September 2017) - This was cool, but felt like it fell straight out of the late 90's space adventures.


  • A Series of Steaks,” by Vina Jie-Min Prasad (Clarkesworld, January 2017) - Great title. - This was a lot of fun to read. Prasad is now a name I'll look out for. What a lovely approach to forgery and food.



  • Wind Will Rove,” by Sarah Pinsker (Asimov’s, September/October 2017) - An interesting use of generation ships to look into common bad criticisms of liberal arts, but I didn't love it.


So, I think A Series of Steaks is leading Small Changes by a sliver. And I'm not going to rank the rest on my ballot.