This polemic will begin with something of a hyperbole.
The Hugos are utter twaddle.
Although the Hugos present the image of something more cosmopolitan or representative than the standard convention award, it’s becoming increasingly apparent every year that, despite being the most recognizable award in science fiction and fantasy cultural awareness, the Hugos are nothing more than an amalgamation of like minded WorldCon members, or agendized voting blocs, bent on vociferous back patting. I apply that statement broadly, although it is most obviously associated with the down ballot. Before I get too far into that rabbit hole, let me first place ‘best novel’ squarely in my sites where the only explanation is that the average Hugo voter reads somewhere been four and six novels a year.
Often when critics rail against the Hugo’s best novel category it’s to attack lack of sophistication. The Clarke Award, British Science Fiction Award, the Kitschies, Tiptree Award, Philip K.… Read the rest