The Arthur C. Clarke Award 2012 Shortlist
The shortlist for the 2012 Arthur C Clarke Awards was announced yesterday. The Six shortlisted books are:
- Greg Bear, Hull Zero Three (Gollancz)
- Drew Magary, The End Specialist (Harper Voyager)
- China Miéville, Embassytown (Macmillan)
- Jane Rogers, The Testament of Jessie Lamb (Sandstone Press)
- Charles Stross, Rule 34 (Orbit)
- Sheri S.Tepper, The Waters Rising (Gollancz)
Of the books shortlisted the only one that I’ve read is Hull Zero Three by Greg Bear. I liked the story of that book but I sometimes find Greg Bear’s writing style to be overly descriptive. I think that the story of a spaceship hurtling towards an unknown destination is a very Arthur C. Clarke type vision though so I can certainly see why it was nominated. It’s also good to see some proper space based science fiction on the list.
I’m going to try and read all the books on the list before the winner is announced on 2nd May. I’ve actually never read a China Miéville novel before. I really should have though since I think this is the fifth time he’s been nominated for the award, so I’m going to be starting with Emabassytown. I’ve heard quite mixed reactions to Embassytown so I’m not quite sure what to expect.
I like the sound of The Testament of Jessie Lamb by Jane Rogers. Although the story of women dying in their millions sounds quite bleak, I’ve always had a soft spot for end of the world scenario’s. The Waters Rising by Sheri S.Tepper sounds to be more Fantasy than Science Fiction but it’s nice to see some variety on the list. It’s not a book that I would be particularly interested in had it not been nominated for a Clarke Award but discovering different kinds of books is part of the fun of following awards like this.
The thing I’ve always liked about the Clarke awards and the reason that I continue to be interested in them year after year, is that there are always a wide variety of books nominated, all of which fall under the heading of Science Fiction. A lot of other awards always seem to favour certain kinds of books but I’ve never really thought that about the Clarke Awards. There is a lot of variety in the list above, a real cross section of what is going on in Science Fiction right now so I think that this is going to be a list of books well worth reading.