Big Brother's Big Shoes
Hugo Book Club Blog
by Unknown
3w ago
There’s a graveyard in the publishing world that’s full of authorized sequels and companion novels to famous works. Neither Scarlett nor Rhett Butler’s People are talked about decades following their release or in as fond terms as Gone With The Wind. Return to Wuthering Heights seems to have existed just to cash in on Emily Brontë’s original. The less said about the sequel to Catcher In The Rye, the better. (Image via Goodreads) In that context, it seems foolhardy for an author to try and tackle a novel like George Orwell’s 1984, a book that is often ranked among the most important ..read more
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The Maginot Line of Fandom
Hugo Book Club Blog
by Unknown
1M ago
French Prime Minister Georges Clemenceau famously quipped that “generals are always preparing to fight using the tools of the last war.” Built by France in the wake of the First World War, the Maginot Line was an engineering marvel  completely unsuited to the challenges of the Second World War. (Image via History.com)  At the time of this writing All Fandom Is Plunged Into War, and we are left wondering if some of the tools adopted in the wake of the last conflict are suited to today’s conflict. Is E Pluribus Hugo the Maginot Line of fandom? This is the seventh year that t ..read more
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A New Moon Illuminates The Apocalypse
Hugo Book Club Blog
by Unknown
1M ago
Rice offers an apocalypse from a fresh perspective and with  interesting insights.  (Image via Goodreads) Post-apocalyptic fiction is known for its hopeful restarts, but the subgenre can also include ultimately nefarious elements perhaps best described as fantasies of re-establishing paleoconservative social hierarchies. In the aftermath of societal collapses, readers are encouraged to imagine themselves as a heroic survivor, either uniquely prepared, or uniquely suited for the new world that arises from the ashes of the old. Unshackled from the confines and complexities of ..read more
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The Last Trumpet Shall Sound
Hugo Book Club Blog
by Unknown
2M ago
In 2023, the Campo Grande Treefrog went extinct. There’s a very real chance that in the not-too-distant future, the elephant will trumpet its last. (Image via Goodreads) Its loud and distinctive croaking now exists only in recordings. It was one of hundreds of animals that disappeared from the planet last year as human-driven climate change, pollution, and other forms of habitat destruction ravaged ecosystems. Javan rhinos, orangutans, sea turtles, saolas, pangolins, and elephants are all dying out. Make no mistake: this is a crisis that will have profound downstream consequences f ..read more
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Death From Above (Hugo cinema 1979)
Hugo Book Club Blog
by Unknown
2M ago
As the 1970s drew to a close, science fiction cinema was in transition. The Hugo for Best Dramatic Presentation in 1979 reflects this; socially conscious environmental parables of the waning decade were making way for a new era of popcorn cinema. Star Wars producer Gary Kurtz presents the 1979 Hugo Award for Best Dramatic Presentation to Superman star Christopher Reeve at Seacon. (Image via Supermania78) For the first time, there were two animated movies nominated in the same year (something that would not happen again until 2002): Watership Down and Ralph Bakshi’s Lord of the ..read more
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Old Man's Boss Baby
Hugo Book Club Blog
by Unknown
3M ago
(Image via Goodreads) There’s a saying in the labour movement: make someone a boss and they’re going to act like a boss. It’s an observation based on a familiar pattern of workers becoming managers and then acting in ways that put them at odds with the needs of the proletariat. The system incentives people to make decisions that serve the few instead of the many. This is, fundamentally, the problem with John Scalzi’s latest novel. Starter Villain is narrated in the first person by Charlie, an underemployed and financially precarious teacher who inherits a megacorporation after ..read more
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Indie Cinema And The Hugo Of Doom
Hugo Book Club Blog
by Unknown
4M ago
At the 2023 WSFS Business Meeting, a constitutional amendment was passed that would (if ratified at the 2024 Business Meeting) add two new categories to the already long list of Hugo Awards: Best Independent Short Film and Best Independent Feature Film. Independent Cinema is awesome, but ill-defined. (Photo by Daniel Penfield via Wikipedia)  The beauty and diversity of global cinema and of independent film is something that should be more celebrated at the Hugo Awards. But despite our love of independent SFF cinema, we are firmly opposed to the creation of a secondary award for ..read more
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The Un-American Treatment of a Leftist Science Fiction Fan
Hugo Book Club Blog
by Unknown
4M ago
Professor Chandler Davis: author, mathematician, activist, and science fiction fan. Chan Davis (1929 - 2022) was well known to science fiction fans of the 1940s and 1950s. He was a fanzine editor, an early filker, a Worldcon troublemaker, and a regular contributor to Astounding Science Fiction. But to the broader public, he’s more likely to be remembered as a mathematician … and as a political prisoner. Fired from the University of Michigan in 1954, and imprisoned for six months in 1960 on charges of contempt of Congress brought by the House Unamerican Activities Committee (HUAC), D ..read more
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A Conversation With Wole Talabi
Hugo Book Club Blog
by Unknown
5M ago
Success as a science fiction author didn’t come out of nowhere for Wole Talabi. The Nigerian-born author’s byline has been appearing regularly in publications such as Asimov’s Science Fiction, Apex Magazine, and the Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction for about a decade. But the past year, Talabi’s name seems to be everywhere. With multiple award nominations and his first novel hitting shelves, 2023 has been a great year for Wole Talabi. (Image via the author's Facebook page) His novelette A Dream Of Electric Mothers was shortlisted for the most prestigious awards in genre fic ..read more
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The Numbers Game
Hugo Book Club Blog
by Unknown
7M ago
Over the past decade, there has been a regularly recurring argument about the maximum number of individual contributors that can be listed for each group finalist on the Hugo ballot. This is more common with fan categories like fanzine, fancast, and semiprozine — in recent years some of the contributors lists for an individual publication have extended to several dozen names. In 1959, editors of Cry of the Nameless — F. M. Busby, Elinor Busby, Burnett Toskey and Wally Weber — became the first team of more than three credited for a single Hugo finalist.  (Cry of the Nameless April 19 ..read more
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