Voting closed on Thursday for the 2014 Hugo Awards and 1939 Retro Hugo Awards. I managed to read for some of the categories, and here are my thoughts.
2014 BEST SHORT STORY
My ranking order (favorite at the top):
- “The Water That Falls on You from Nowhere” by John Chu (Tor.com, 02-2013)
- “Selkie Stories Are for Losers” by Sofia Samatar (Strange Horizons, Jan-2013)
- “If You Were a Dinosaur, My Love” by Rachel Swirsky (Apex Magazine, Mar-2013)
- “The Ink Readers of Doi Saket” by Thomas Olde Heuvelt (Tor.com, 04-2013)
John Chu’s story about the kinds of lies we feel compelled to tell is intriguing and cool– one of the few shorts I’ve read that deserves an expanded attempt. I hope he revisits this universe again, perhaps with new characters and new lies. The rest of the stories are nice, but fell below my expectations based on the public hype, and it probably didn’t help that I read Chu’s story first. Samatar’s story is cute, addressing the bitter feelings of abandoned children of selkies, and Swirsky’s love letter, styled off of the children’s classic, If You Give a Mouse a Cookie, is a sweet, yet stirring, way to address an ugly topic. Heuvelt’s story is a humorous behind-the-scenes take of a classic Thai fable.
If you like cutesy SF pieces, read this entire category. If you click on the John Chu piece, don’t read the Tor.com blurb at the beginning! It’ll kill the effect!