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2021 Hugo Awards Finalists

Widely considered the premier award in science fiction, The Hugo Awards are an annual literary award for the best science fiction or fantasy works and achievements of the previous year, given at the World Science Fiction Convention and chosen by its members.

Playlist Tags: awards: hugo awards topic: science fiction

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Black Sun

Between Earth and Sky: Book #1

By Rebecca Roanhorse
Narrated by: Cara Gee, Nicole Lewis, Kaipo Schwab & Shaun Taylor-Corbett
Length: 12 hours 46 minutes

If you enjoyed The Unspoken Name, then you’ll love Black Sun.

“AHHHH!! READ THIS BOOK!! This is wonderfully written and epic with world building. From a swashbuckling sea woman to a harbinger of death (and crows) and a glorified sun priestess—this book has it all! I want to get lost in this book. More importantly, I want Serapio and Xiala to have a happy ending... Where is book two??”

The Well-Read Moose image Anna Rose, The Well-Read Moose
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The City We Became

A Novel
The Great Cities Trilogy: Book #1

By N. K. Jemisin
Narrated by: Robin Miles
Length: 16 hours 12 minutes

The City We Became

“What did I just listen to and why did I like it so much? Part of falling in love with this book was the listening experience, to be certain. The narration was stellar. The production was on point. But the story... the story itself is sublime. N.K. Jemisin has written a love letter to New York City - but not the one in bright, bold letters on the silver screen - the real city, and the real people who inhabit it and call it home, even if only temporarily. And it was beyond my wildest dreams (and nightmares). The City We Became is so incredibly layered and nuanced - diving into discussions of racism and sexism and the fallacy of good vs evil. I wanted nothing more than to steep in its long chapters, and get to know its boroughs as intimately as Jemisin would allow - not mere stereotypes but fully fleshed and brilliant, blinding avatars. Witty, subversive, imaginative, unbelievable. Get on this wild ride.”

Second Star to the Right image Britt, Second Star to the Right
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Harrow the Ninth

Locked Tomb: Book #2

By Tamsyn Muir
Narrated by: Moira Quirk
Length: 19 hours 50 minutes

Harrow the Ninth, the sequel to the sensational, USA Today bestselling novel Gideon the Ninth, turns a galaxy inside out as one necromancer struggles to survive the wreckage of herself aboard the Emperor’s haunted space station. Harrowhark Nonagesimus, last necromancer of the Ninth House, has been drafted by her Emperor to fight an unwinnable... Read more »

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Network Effect

Murderbot Diaries: Book #5

By Martha Wells
Narrated by: Kevin R. Free
Length: 12 hours 47 minutes

Network Effect

“Martha Wells’ Murderbot Diaries has become one of my favorite series of all time, and Network Effect is a perfect addition. Murderbot is still trying to figure out what it wants after hacking its governor module. In the meantime, it spends its days protecting the humans it cares about. Of course, everything goes terribly wrong when a friend shows up to kidnap Murderbot and its humans are along for the ride. Network Effect isn’t just fun and action-packed, it’s also emotional and thought-provoking. I love Murderbot!”

Cavalier House Books image Sophie Giroir, Cavalier House Books
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Upright Women Wanted

By Sarah Gailey
Narrated by: Romy Nordlinger
Length: 3 hours 52 minutes

Upright Women Wanted

“Sarah Gailey has made me fall in love with them all over again. This novel is quirky, occasionally funny, and constantly heart wrenching. It's for anyone who's ever felt out of place, and a reminder of the beauty that can come when you accept yourself and find your people.”

Page 158 Books image Jenny, Page 158 Books
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Riot Baby

By Tochi Onyebuchi
Narrated by: Tochi Onyebuchi
Length: 3 hours 46 minutes

Ella has a Thing. She sees a classmate grow up to become a caring nurse. A neighbor’s son murdered in a drive-by shooting. Things that haven’t happened yet. Kev, born while Los Angeles burned around them, wants to protect his sister from a power that could destroy her. But when Kev is incarcerated, Ella must decide what it means to watch her...

Read more »

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Ring Shout

By P. Djeli Clark
Narrated by: Channie Waites
Length: 5 hours 36 minutes

Ring Shout

“The emotionally charged, wild ride of Ring Shout by P. Djèlí Clark was one I did not want to end. Clark pulled me into the life of Maryse and her band of monster hunters and held me hostage. With beautiful language, deep characters, and a fully immersive world, this story of vengeance and self-forgiveness unfolds. By the end, I was in tears. Ring Shout perfectly takes on a dark, violent history, but also an uncertain, terrifying future. Everyone needs to read Ring Shout.”

Cavalier House Books image Sophie Giroir, Cavalier House Books
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By Nate Marshall
Narrated by: Nate Marshall
Length: 1 hours 35 minutes

Sharp, lyrical poems celebrating the Black vernacular—its influence on pop culture, its necessity for familial survival, its rite in storytelling and in creating the safety found only within its intimacy

“Terrific . . . illuminates life in this country in a strikingly original way.”—Ron Charles, The Washington Post


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The Empress of Salt and Fortune

Singing Hills Cycle: Book #1

By Nghi Vo
Narrated by: Cindy Kay
Length: 2 hours 25 minutes

With the heart of an Atwood tale and the visuals of a classic Asian period drama, Nghi Vo's The Empress of Salt and Fortune is a tightly and lushly written narrative about empire, storytelling, and the anger of women.

A young royal from the far north, is sent south for a political marriage in an empire reminiscent of imperial China. Her... Read more »

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Come Tumbling Down

Wayward Children: Book #5

By Seanan McGuire
Narrated by: Seanan McGuire
Length: 3 hours 51 minutes

Come Tumbling Down

“Seanan McGuire strikes again with another breathtakingly beautiful fantasy! The Wayward Children series is an amazing collection of novellas for those who love the unique and bizarre, who long to see themselves in fiction, who want to lose themselves in words. This particular installment returns to some of her very best characters and can be enjoyed by new readers and devoted fans alike. Highly recommended!”

Allison Chesbro image Allison Chesbro, Schuler Books (Okemos)
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The Empire of Gold

A Novel
The Daevabad Trilogy: Book #3

By S. A. Chakraborty
Narrated by: Soneela Nankani
Length: 28 hours 37 minutes

"No series since George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire has quite captured both palace intrigue and the way that tribal infighting and war hurt the vulnerable the most." —Paste Magazine

The final chapter in the bestselling, critically acclaimed Daevabad Trilogy, in which a con-woman and an idealistic djinn prince join forces to save a...

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A Handful of Earth, A Handful of Sky

The World of Octavia Butler

By Lynell George
Narrated by: Adenrele Ojo
Length: 4 hours 14 minutes

A Handful of Earth, A Handful of Sky: The World of Octavia E. Butler offers a blueprint for a creative life from the perspective of award-winning science-fiction writer and “MacArthur Genius” Octavia E. Butler. It is a collection of ideas about how to look, listen, breathe — how to be in the world. 

This audiobook is about the creative process.... Read more »

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Beowulf: A New Translation

By Maria Dahvana Headley
Narrated by: JD Jackson & Maria Dahvana Headley
Length: 4 hours 8 minutes

If you enjoyed The Iliad, then you’ll love Beowulf: A New Translation.

“Very rarely can you say a new edition of a story as old as BEOWULF has truly done something revolutionary, but I would argue that Headley achieves that in her new translation. In some senses, Headley modernizes the language, as all good translations do, but more than that, she imitates modern spoken word poetry. This brings Beowulf, a poem originally invented to be performed aloud, back into the oral tradition. It also allows the poem to lean further into the poetic form of the original epic, as alliteration and epithets flow more naturally in spoken poetry than they do in the written word. This is Beowulf as it hasn't been seen in thousands of years, and you won't want to miss out on it. I know it has me reassessing all the ways I think of epic poems.”

Trident Booksellers and Cafe image Katherine, Trident Booksellers and Cafe
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The Raybearer Series: Book #1

By Jordan Ifueko
Narrated by: Joniece Abbott-Pratt
Length: 13 hours 48 minutes


“Such a cool fantasy novel with an incredible magic system! Perfect for fans of "Children of Blood and Bone." I highly recommend listening to the audiobook to further immerse yourself in this beautiful world that Ifueko has created.”

An Unlikely Story image Coleen, An Unlikely Story
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The Legendborn Cycle

By Tracy Deonn
Narrated by: Joniece Abbott-Pratt
Length: 18 hours 54 minutes


“I am blown away, out of the water, and through the roof. If this book doesn't make ALL the best of 2020 lists, I will burn them to the ground. Legendborn had me hook, line, and sinker from the start, and it just kept getting better. Bree is a force to be reckoned with and I loved her wholeheartedly. Deonn never reduces her or holds back the anger that is rightfully hers, nor does she reduce Bree to that anger. This is a story of overcoming grief and turning it into something hopeful. This is an ode to family (both found & born), to Black Girl Magic, to overthrowing that which only serves a privileged few. And that Twilight reference? Slayed me! A blazing beauty of a book. My only complaint is that now I have to wait for the next one.”

Second Star to the Right image Britt, Second Star to the Right
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By Darcie Little Badger
Length: 9 hours 1 minutes

Imagine an America very similar to our own. It's got homework, best friends, and pistachio ice cream.There are some differences. This America has been shaped dramatically by the magic, monsters, knowledge, and legends of its peoples, those Indigenous and those not. Some of these forces are charmingly every day, like the ability to make an orb of...

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A Deadly Education

A Novel
The Scholomance: Book #1

By Naomi Novik
Narrated by: Anisha Dadia
Length: 10 hours 58 minutes

A Deadly Education

“What an amazingly fun book to listen to. I loved El and her snarky attitude. I loved that she had all this power but refused to give in to the dark side to use it. I loved the world building, both the specific details of the school and the mals that haunted it, and the glimpse of the larger world where magic users have to band together to survive. Anisha Dadia does such a fantastic job narrating I couldn’t wait to plug back in.”

Buttonwood Books and Toys image Kristine, Buttonwood Books and Toys
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Cemetery Boys

By Aiden Thomas
Narrated by: Avi Roque
Length: 13 hours 47 minutes

Cemetery Boys

“"Listening to Cemetery Boys made me smile. A lot. Aiden Thomas presents a story of persistence, mystery, and finding one’s place in the world. Yadriel, a trans, teenage, latinx boy, lives in a family of brujos and brujas. After coming out as trans his family does not know where he fits within their traditions. With the help of his opinionated cousin Maritza, Yadriel completes the ceremony to become a brujo in secret and accidentally summons the wrong ghost: Julian, a high energy boy from his school. Yadriel, Julian and Maritza set out to solve the mystery of Julian’s death, and to release his spirit. Of course, to make things more awkward, Yadriel develops a crush on the spirit boy. What more could one ask for? Thomas creates a magical but real world highlighting family dynamics surrounding trans identity within a gendered society, the need to prove oneself, and the importance of connecting to family. This book may sound spooky, but instead the story is feel-good, heartwarming, and silly at times; it’s all about celebrating life and being who you are."”

Content image Emma, Content
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A Wizard's Guide to Defensive Baking

By T. Kingfisher
Narrated by: Patricia Santomasso
Length: TBA

Fourteen-year-old Mona isn't like the wizards charged with defending the city. She can't control lightning or speak to water. Her familiar is a sourdough starter and her magic only works on bread. She has a comfortable life in her aunt's bakery making gingerbread men dance.

But Mona's life is turned upside down when she finds a dead body on the... Read more »

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