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Exercising your right to vote

If you are anything like I was for most of my reading life, you might have been a bit surprised this week to discover that you could vote for the Hugo awards. Surprise again - you can vote for the Locus awards, too. If you already know that, and know how to vote, then this isn't the post for you. 

But for everyone else, please keep reading. Voting on these awards is important - it means something, not only to the people who are nominated, and who win, but to the shape of the field in general. And it's a very easy thing to do.

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Our Fantastic Week Ahead: July 25

Every year, the Hugo Awards are given in various categories for the best science fiction and fantasy of the year before.  They are awarded at the World Science Fiction Convention (Worldcon), which will be held this year in August in Reno, Nevada.

The Hugo Awards cover a wide range of material--from Best Short Story to Best Editor (both short and long form) to Best Professional Artist to Best Fanzine.  While we'd love to be able to highlight all of these categories, here at Fantasy Matters we are going to focus on one category in particular--Best Novel.

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Our Fantastic Week Ahead: July 18

After we published our "fantastic fun" last Friday, we found two more links that we really wish we had included in our Harry Potter-themed list:

  • Amazingly wonderful-looking drinks inspired by many of the Harry Potter characters.  I'm particularly impressed by the reasoning that went into the creation of the "Severus Snape."  Also, I realize that linking to alcoholic drinks first thing on a Monday morning might not be the most appropriate thing in the world, but I figure that these descriptions are so detailed and thoughtful, that they qualify as literature in and of themselves.  Right? (The Backyard Bartender)
  • Also, an imagined conversation between J.K. Rowling and George R. R. Martin (one that probably also included a discussion of the best use of initials in an author's name). (Imgur)

This second link provides a nice transition to two reviews of Martin's latest book--A Dance With Dragons--that we found noteworthy.  The first, written by Lev Grossman, was published in Time magazine; the second, written by Dana Jennings, was published in The New York Times.  What we found interesting was how both of these reviews compared Martin to Tolkien in a very favorable way.  Grossman calls Martin "the American Tolkien," and Jennings takes it a step further, ending her review with, "Tolkien is dead. And long live George Martin."

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Our Fantastic Week Ahead: July 11

A Dance With DragonsCan you feel it?  The excitement?  The anticipation?  The sense of thousands, if not millions, of fantasy fans holding their breath, waiting for the next installment in their favorite series?

The release of the final Harry Potter movie would be enough in and of itself to cause quite a stir, but this week also marks the release of the long-awaited next installment in George R. R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire series--A Dance with Dragons.  Needless to say, it's going to be quite a week!

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Our Fantastic Week Ahead: July 4

The Snow Queen's ShadowWe are big fans of Jim C. Hines and his work here at Fantasy Matters.  Jim was one of the featured authors at the original Fantasy Matters conference, and at the conference, he read an excerpt from what was going to become The Stepsister Scheme, a retelling of the story of Cinderella.  The Stepsister Scheme was the first book in The Princess Series, which also includes The Mermaid's Madness and Red Hood's Revenge.  All of these books are not only great stories and fun reads, but they also thoughtfully reconsider questions of gender and sexuality that are problematic in the original fairy tales. This week marks the release of the latest book in that series--The Snow Queen's Shadow--and we're really excited about it!

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