The Hugo Awards are science fiction’s most prestigious prize. Books (and other media) nominated for a Hugo are always a stellar read, and you can read (and watch!) many of 2021's Hugo Award nominees for free through the Free Library!
In some categories, many of the nominees are available to read for free online through their publisher. We've collected all the information you need on where and how to read (or watch, or listen) to this year's Hugo Award nominees, and even explore the works of the lesser-known people who contribute to the world of publishing and have been nominated this year.
The winners will be announced at DisCon III, December 15 – 19, 2021.
Hugo Nominees for Best Short Story
All of these short stories are available to read for free online. Click the titles to be taken to the story. Click the name of the author to be taken to the author's page in our catalog. If we do not have a catalog page for the author, then the link will go to the author's personal website, if available.
Most of these Novelettes are available to read for free online. Click the titles to be taken to the story. Click the name of the author to be taken to the author's page in our catalog. If we do not have a catalog page for the author, then the link will go to the author's personal website, if available.
Helicopter Story by Isabel Fall (Debut), published in Clarkesworld, Issue 160 This story, originally published under a different title, was retracted by the author soon after publication. Despite being nominated for a Hugo, she has not decided to make the story officially available to read through any medium.
CoNZealand Fringe: Claire Rousseau, C, Cassie Hart, Adri Joy, Marguerite Kenner, Cheryl Morgan, Alasdair Stuart
CoNZealand Fringe was a Sci-Fi convention held in New Zealand. Transcripts of all the panels are available on their website.
FIYAHCON: L.D. Lewis–Director, Brent Lambert–Senior Programming Coordinator, Lori Kusano–FIYAHCON Fringe Co-Director, Vida Cruz–FIYAHCON Fringe Co-Director, and the Incredible FIYAHCON team FIYAHCON is a virtual convention celebrating Black and Indigenous People of Color (BIPOC) in the world of speculative fiction.
A Handful of Earth, A Handful of Sky: The World of Octavia E. Butler by Lynell George (Angel City Press)
We don't have this book in our collection at this time. But we do have many books by Octavia Butler herself and the wonderful anthology Octavia's Brood which covers similar themes.
The Last Bronycon: A Fandom Autopsy by Jenny Nicholson
This full-length documentary on the "Brony" subculture (adult men who are fans of the franchise My Little Pony), is available to view for free on Youtube. Parents should be advised that while this documentary does center on the My Little Pony franchise, this documentary is geared towards an adult audience, contains discussion of sexual themes, and might not be considered appropriate for children.
Hugo Nominees for Best Editor
Click on each name to be taken to their author page in our catalog, which will show everything we have that has been edited by them.
John Picacio, Cover artist for Constance Verity Saves the World
Alyssa Winans, She creates many of the Google Doodles! (But her other work is far more impressive)
Hugo Nominees for Best Semiprozine
Semiprozine is short for "Semi-professional-edited magazine." This mostly means that these are independent professional literary magazines, and not published by any of the big five major publishers. Many up-and-coming authors get their start publishing short works in semiprozines. Semiprozines typically make digital versions of their issues available for free online, reserving only the latest issue for subscribers. Click on the name of each nominee to be taken to their website. These days, many semiprozines take the form of podcasts or have audio versions of their stories.
Nominated in the special one-time Best Video Game category, Blaseball is a free online simulated sports league in which players bet on AI-simulated games (using imaginary coins) to earn votes to change the rules of the game itself in surreal and drastic ways. The fandom and the creators interact to develop and tell the stories of the Internet Blaseball League and its players collaboratively.
The following Hugo Award Nominated authors and titles can be found in these catalog lists and checked out with your Free Library card. In these catalog lists, you'll find the standard print book format; but you can click the green speech bubble by each book to see if it's available as an ebook or audiobook through freelibrary.overdrive.com (or the Libby app on your smart device!)
Nominees for "Best Dramatic Presentation, Short Form" (TV Episode). The nominees tend to be from the latest season, but some of them aren't out on DVD yet, so we've included season 1 of the show to get you started.
The Astounding Award is not a Hugo Award, but is administered in a similar manner and in parallel with the Hugo Awards. It features the best new writers in the world of speculative fiction, science fiction, and fantasy. This list compiles at least one book by each nominee.
2021 Hugo Award Ballot Announcement
Watch Sheree Renée Thomas, Malka Older, and Ulysses Campbell share fun clips and information of all of the 2021 Hugo Nominees.
Hugo Award-winners will be announced at DisCon III, December 15 – 19, 2021.