The World Fantasy Awards are the most prestigious accolades given in the field of fantasy today. Begun in 1975, the World Fantasy Awards are selected by a small panel of judges that change from year to year. Often awarded to eccentric and small press publications, the WFA is given in many categories but the one that concerns us is the Novel category. This year's Nominees are:
Blood of Ambrose, James Enge
This small press novel focuses on the perilous attempts of twelve-year-old prince Lathmar to ascend to his rightful throne as Emperor of Ontil. This is a inventive tale told with precision and wit, a tale of magic, violence, and betrayal.
The Red Tree, Caitlín R. Kiernan
Subtly written and genuinely terrifying, this is the story of a troubled woman who becomes obsessed with the dark mysteries and tragic deaths that surround an ancient oak tree. Ancient crimes and psychological terrors combine to question the sanity of Kiernan's characters as well as her readers.
The City & The City, China Miéville
Mieville is known for his weird fiction and this novel is no exception. A murder case drives a hard-boiled detective from his native city of Beszel to its richer rival city of Ul Qoma. As his investigations proceed Inspector Borlu discovers disturbing connections between the two cities and even a third metropolis that may be controlling all their destinies.
Finch, Jeff VanderMeer
In this truly bizarre novel VanderMeer blends steampunk, noir, fantasy, and sentient fungus. His language is brutal yet lovely and his plot mixes the past and the future, the dirty and the sublime, the personal and the cosmic.
In Great Waters, Kit Whitfield
In an alternate history medieval Venice allied itself with merfolk living beneath the waves and sealed the treaties with marriage. Now the kings of Europe have mixed blood in their veins and unsanctioned half-breeds are put to death. Told in dense, historical prose this is a book of political maneuvering, peopled with flawed and realistic characters.
The winners will be announced at the World Fantasy Convention in Columbus OH, October 28-31, 2010.
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