Shiver me Timbers! The 2021 Hugo Winners – The Conclusion!

Ahoy there me mateys!  The Hugo Winners have been announced!  Let’s see how I did.  I be using the list as published on with links to me reviews where applicable.  The winners are listed in bold.  A reminder that I only be tracking the categories of specific interest to me.  They be:

Best Novel

  • Black Sun, Rebecca Roanhorse (Gallery / Saga Press)
  • The City We Became, N.K. Jemisin (Orbit)
  • Harrow the Ninth, Tamsyn Muir (Tordotcom)
  • Network Effect, Martha Wells (Tordotcom)
  • Piranesi, Susanna Clarke (Bloomsbury)
  • The Relentless Moon, Mary Robinette Kowal (Tor Books)

Hoped for WinnerPiranesi, Susanna Clarke (Bloomsbury) – Cause I loved it and Murderbot has some awards already (though I would be okay if it got more cause I LOVE MURDERBOT!!).


Best Novella

Hoped for WinnerRing Shout, P. Djèlí Clark (Tordotcom) – This one was wonderful and taught me so much.  In terms of impact, the others I read haven’t come even close.

Thoughts:  The winner was beautifully written and I can see why it won.  I am looking forward to Vo’s sequel.

Best Novelette (click for all reviews)

  • “Burn, or the Episodic Life of Sam Wells as a Super”, A.T. Greenblatt (Uncanny Magazine, May/June 2020)
  • “Helicopter Story”, Isabel Fall (Clarkesworld, January 2020)
  • “The Inaccessibility of Heaven”, Aliette de Bodard (Uncanny Magazine, July/August 2020)
  • “Monster”, Naomi Kritzer (Clarkesworld, January 2020)
  • “The Pill”, Meg Elison (from Big Girl, (PM Press))
  • “Two Truths and a Lie”, Sarah Pinsker (

Hoped for Winner:  Only five of these novelettes are available as one has been withdrawn from nomination.  Of the rest, I found most of the rest just to be okay.  There was only one that I really loved.  “Two Truths and a Lie”, Sarah Pinsker (  Easy choice here.

Thoughts:  Aye, like I said.

Best Short Story

Hoped for Winner: – I did read all of these short stories and really loved three of them.  I liked the other three just fine.  The top pick did change.  “Metal Like Blood in the Dark”, T. Kingfisher (Uncanny Magazine, September/October 2020)

Thoughts:  No complaints here.

Best Series

  • The Daevabad Trilogy, S.A. Chakraborty (Harper Voyager)
  • The Interdependency, John Scalzi (Tor Books)
  • The Lady Astronaut Universe, Mary Robinette Kowal (Tor Books/Audible/Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction)
  • The Murderbot Diaries, Martha Wells (
  • October Daye, Seanan McGuire (DAW)
  • The Poppy War, R.F. Kuang (Harper Voyager)

Hoped for Winner:  I have read the whole Murderbot series (I LOVE MURDERBOT!!!) and most of the Lady Astronaut books and most of the Poppy War trilogy.  The October Daye and Interdependecy aren’t to me taste.  I haven’t read the Daevabad trilogy and keep forgetting about it.  The Murderbot Diaries, Martha Wells ( be me pick.

Thoughts: Have I told the crew how much I LOVE MURDERBOT!!!!

Side note:  The next two awards are technically not Hugos but are given out on the same day.

Astounding Award for Best New Writer

  • Lindsay Ellis (1st year of eligibility)
  • Simon Jimenez (1st year of eligibility)
  • Micaiah Johnson (1st year of eligibility)
  • A.K. Larkwood (1st year of eligibility)
  • Jenn Lyons (2nd year of eligibility)
  • Emily Tesh (2nd year of eligibility)

Thoughts:  I have read books by Jenn Lyons, Micaiah Johnson, and Simon Jimenez.  I own an unread book by A.K. Larkwood.  I have heard of, but not wanted to read, books by Emily Tesh or Lindsay Ellis.  Though the First Mate is planning to read an Ellis book.

Hoped for Winner: I will have to check out Emily Tesh’s stuff.

Lodestar Award for Best Young Adult Book

  • Cemetery Boys, Aiden Thomas (Swoon Reads)
  • A Deadly Education, Naomi Novik (Del Rey)
  • Elatsoe, Darcie Little Badger (Levine Querido)
  • Legendborn, Tracy Deonn (Margaret K. McElderry/ Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing)
  • Raybearer, Jordan Ifueko (Amulet / Hot Key)
  • A Wizard’s Guide to Defensive Baking, T. Kingfisher (Argyll Productions)

Hoped for Winner:  I did not manage to read this whole category.  I am still interested in reading the Deonn book.  I am not interested in reading the rest of the books at this point.  Of the two I read, either could win and I would be happy but I have to pick so . . . A Deadly Education, Naomi Novik (Del Rey)

Thoughts:  Upon reflection, I consider Novik’s book not to be young adult despite the age of the protagonists.  So very glad of the winner here.  Who doesn’t love magical dancing ginger bread men and a sourdough starter with attitude.  Arrr!

So there ye have it.  Out of the seven categories that I follow I managed to get three correct.  That said, the winners were all more to me taste then in other years.  The category I enjoyed reading the most this year was novellas.  The novelette category was the most disappointing.  Until next year’s Hugos . .

Always remember:

Q:  What do ye call a pirate that skips class?

A:  Captain Hooky!

Hardy har har!

x The Captain

5 thoughts on “Shiver me Timbers! The 2021 Hugo Winners – The Conclusion!

  1. Yay Murderbot! I had a hard time choosing in some of these categories. I didn’t always pick the winner, but I’m pleased with the results overall. I’ve already read everything from the winners list that I’m interested in so far this year, with the exception of the Graphic Novel. I haven’t read any Emily Tesh either, but I want to change that, too.


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