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Voice Of The Fans: Replacing Award Winners

Last week we asked which of the award winning books you thought were the ‘worst’. This week’s question is the next logical step to last week’s. There are many, many award winners that people did not like, so we’re asking you this question:

Which award nominee that didn’t win should have replaced the winner?

Again let’s stick with Hugo and Nebula award winners as those are the big two and will most likely have novels that people will recognize. Not sure what other nominees were available to vote on in a particular year? Locus Magazine has you covered with their comprehensive list of awards. Check them out then come back and tell us which novels you would chuck for a replacement and why!

About JP Frantz (2322 Articles)
Has nothing interesting to say so in the interest of time, will get on with not saying it.

7 Comments on Voice Of The Fans: Replacing Award Winners

  1. 1998 Hugos


    I found Forever Peace an extremely weak winner.  City on Fire was a far better book, IMO.

  2. NOVEL-2006

    Spin wasn’t bad, but it was probably the weakest of relative to the very strong nominees this year.  Pretty much any other novel deserved it more (in my opinion).


    While I haven’t read “His Majesty’s Dragon,” the other three that didn’t win were also very strong contenders against a novel by Vernor Vinge that isn’t his best (still good, though).  I think Glasshouse probably should have won or Blindsight.

  3. I’ve only read 5 of the nominees for the past 20 years and those either won or were the only one I read for that year. So, going back to the 1986 Hugos, I liked Ender’s Game, but I’ve never really thought it was particularly special. Both The Postman and Blood Music were much better novels and more enjoyable reads all the way around. I’d be happy with either taking it from Ender’s Game. The exact same situation applies top that year’s Nebulas.

    For 1995, I only read Mother of Storms and Towing Jehovah. I thoroughly enjoyed both. But, Mirror Dance must have been pretty damn good to beat out Towing Jehovah. Still think it’s Morrow’s best.




  4. Ooo!  I would second the Postman winning over Ender’s Game!

  5. Martin S // July 24, 2010 at 1:03 am //

    Oh yeah, Rainbows End winning over Blindsight was indeed a joke.

  6. Bob Blough // July 24, 2010 at 11:44 am //

    Absolutely agree with MikeP about “Ender’s Game” beating out”Blood Music” or “The Postman”, but the first one that comes to my mind is the 1973 Hugo/1972 Nebula.  The winner was “The God’s Themselves” by Isaac Asimov.  But Robert Silverberg wrote two of his greatest novels the same year and both were nominated for both awards:  “Dying Inside” and “The Book of Skulls”.  Also, nominated for the Nebula was John Brunner’s excellent “The Sheep Look Up”.


    “Starship Troopers” by Heinlein over “The Sirens of Titan” by Kurt Vonnegut – Hugo 1960

    “The Wanderer” by Fritz Leiber over “Davy” by Edgar Pangborn – Hugo 1965

    “Rite of Passage” by Alexei Panshin over “Stand on Zanzibar” by John Brunner – Nebula  1968

    “Fountains of Paradise” by Clarke over “On Wings of Song” by Thomas Disch – 1979 Nebula/1980 Hugo

    “Falling Free” by Bujold over “Great Sky River” by Benford – Nebula 1988

    “Paladin of Souls” by Bujold over “The Knight” by Gene Wolfe – Nebula 2004 and over “Ilium” by Dan Simmons – Hugo 2004

    “Camouflage” by Joe Haldeman over “Air” by Geoff Ryman – Nebula 2005

    “The Uplift War” by David Brin over “When Gravity Fails” by George Alec Effinger – Hugo 1988

    “The Vor Game” by Bujold over “Queen of Angels” by Greg Bear – Hugo 1991

    “Mirror Dance” by Bujold over “Brittle Innings” by Michael Bishop – Hugo 1995

    “Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire” by Rowling over “A Storm of Swords” by Martin – Hugo 2001

    “Hominids” by Robert Sawyer over “Kiln People” by David Brin – Hugo 2003

    These winners were not always bad (I really like to read Bujold but don’t think they are Hugo/Nebula worthy) but the others are so far superior in my eyes that sometimes the choices amaze me.

    But then, that’s what makes SF/F the genre that is wide and broad and can encompass millions!  It’s also why I read all nominated works to really get he feel of a certain year and not just the winners.







  7. Clifton & Riley’s They’d Rather Be Right won for 1954. Any of these would be better:

    • Poul Anderson, Brain Wave
    • William Golding, Lord of the Flies
    • Robert A. Heinlein, The Star Beast
    • Richard Matheson, I Am Legend
    • Edgar Pangborn, A Mirror for Observers
    • J. R. R. Tolkein, The Fellowship of the Ring


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