My gods it’s full of puppy poo!

This year, more then ever, the Hugo Voting Packet resembles the curate’s egg: parts of it are good, other parts not so much:

The packet contains the full text of three Hugo-nominated novels, The Dark Between the Stars by Kevin J. Anderson, The Goblin Emperor by Katherine Addison, and The Three Body Problem by Cixin Liu, plus excerpts of Skin Game by Jim Butcher and Ancillary Sword by Ann Leckie.

That gets you two of last year’s best novels and nobody will force you to read the Kevin J. Anderson. Many of the other categories are of course soiled with Puppy droppings you don’t want even if free, but there are some gems among the dross. Especially so in the Best Graphic Story category, with no Puppy nominee included and complete PDFs of Sex Criminals Vol. 1, Saga Vol. 3, Ms Marvel Vol. 1 and Rat Queens Vol. 1.

Though the Hugo Voting Packet should be seen as a bonus, rather than an inalienable part of buying a supporting membership for Worldcon, for plenty of people this of course has been the main benefit of membership, after getting to vote for the Hugos and all that. For those people this year’s packet is far from a bargain, despite the presence of the books listed above. Another reason to smack down the Puppies..


  • Cat

    May 20, 2015 at 2:03 pm

    In my case I had already bought the non-Puppy novels (the only one I didn’t already have was Three Body Problem and I thought it was time I fixed that when the final ballot came out.)

    And I had bought all the non-Puppy Graphic novels by way of a making-my-self-feel-better present about the Puppies.

    I’m glad they’re in the packet, of course, so that people who don’t already have them get to read them. But for me the packet will mostly be a way of deciding which work goes in Last Place. As an extra little exclamation point of disgust, so to speak.

  • Martin Wisse

    May 20, 2015 at 3:53 pm

    I still think you’re a sucker for punishment reading your way through all that, but at least there’s also the Wesley Chu novel in the Campbell category to look forward too, if you like his writing.

  • Ray Radlein

    May 20, 2015 at 4:41 pm

    I already have the good graphic stories in better format than PDF, and the Wesley Chu novel as well; but I hadn’t yet bought Three Body Problem or Goblin Emperor, so those are at least a good thing.

    But, yeah, last year it was easy to make a hard-headed functional case for getting a membership just for the value of the packet; this year the case must rest on more traditional grounds of supporting the endeavor and on protecting the Hugo Award from vandalism.

  • Ray Radlein

    May 20, 2015 at 4:42 pm

    (actually, wait, I only own Volumes 1 and 2 of Saga already; so Volume 3 is at least a bonus, even if it is a PDF)

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