George R.R. Martin says Emily St. John Mandel should get the Hugo


The Hugo Awards are among the most important in science fiction and fantasy. Their nominating process, which is open to participants in recent Worldcons, concludes tonight just before midnight.

Author George R.R. Martin has been sharing his thoughts on his blog. The author of the “Song of Ice & Fire” series is eligible for several episodes of “Game of Thrones,” as well as a concordance he contributed to and two books he edited.

Sure, “The Winds of Winter” isn’t out yet, but the man’s been busy.

Martin throws his considerable credibility behind some things he thinks should be nominated. The most interesting is his pick for the Hugo for best novel: “Station Eleven” by Emily St. John Mandel.


The dystopic novel has gotten plenty of a certain kind of literary attention: It was a finalist for the National Book Award and today was named to the longlist for the Bailey’s Womens Fiction Prize. It’s also a bestseller. But can it make headway with hardcore fans of science fiction?

“One of the 2014 books that I did read stands above all the others, however: STATION ELEVEN, by Emily St. John Mandel,” Martin writes. “One could, I suppose, call it a post-apocolypse novel, and it is that, but all the usual tropes of that subgenre are missing here, and half the book is devoted to flashbacks to before the coming of the virus that wipes out the world, so it’s also a novel of character, and there’s this thread about a comic book and Doctor Eleven and a giant space station and... oh, well, this book should NOT have worked, but it does. It’s a deeply melancholy novel, but beautifully written, and wonderfully elegiac... a book that I will long remember, and return to.”

The Hugo nominations will result in a final ballot, which will be released later this year.

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