2018 John W. Campbell Memorial Award Finalists

Finalists for this year’s John W. Campbell Memorial Award for best science fiction novel have been selected. Christopher McKitterick, director of the Gunn Center for the Study of Science Fiction and newly named Campbell Award chair announced the list on the award’s website.

  • The Rift by Nina Allan
  • Tropic of Kansas by Christopher Brown
  • Future Home of the Living God by Louise Erdrich
  • The Stars Are Legion by Kameron Hurley
  • The Moon and the Other by John Kessel
  • The Stargazer’s Embassy by Eleanor Lerman
  • Austral by Paul McAuley
  • Autonomous by Annalee Newitz
  • After the Flare by Deji Bryce Olukotun
  • New York 2140 by Kim Stanley Robinson
  • The People’s Police by Norman Spinrad
  • Borne by Jeff VanderMeer
  • The Genius Plague by David Walton

The Campbell Award jury members are: Gregory Benford, Sheila Finch, Elizabeth Anne Hull, Paul Kincaid (since 2008), Christopher McKitterick (since 2002; Chair beginning in 2018), Pamela Sargent (since 1997), and Lisa Yaszek (since 2016).

The honor will be presented during the Campbell Conference Award Banquet on June 22, as part of the annual Campbell Conference.

11 thoughts on “2018 John W. Campbell Memorial Award Finalists

  1. @Lurkertype: I’d be willing to bet Campbell would have hated all of those.

  2. I haven’t read them all, but the ones I have, I know he’d hate. Which is why I qualified it with “many”.

  3. I don’t know whether Campbell turned them down or didn’t get a look, but several of the last magazine-published RAH novels came out in F&SF rather than Astounding. I knew of The Door into Summer and (per a recent item) Glory Road; ISFDB lists Have Spacesuit, Will Travel and Starship Troopers(!), and says Farnham’s Freehold came out in If!

  4. Chip Hitchcock: I don’t know whether Campbell turned them down or didn’t get a look…

    And we know from Patterson’s Heinlein bio about the friction between the author and Campbell.

  5. Well wasn’t “Beyond Apollo” the first Campbell winner? Thank goodness it was a memorial award!

  6. @Dan Reid: Well wasn’t “Beyond Apollo” the first Campbell winner? Thank goodness it was a memorial award!
    That was pretty much Poul Anderson’s publicly expressed sentiment at the time.

  7. Chip: I recall reading someplace a comment from RAH in the late 1960s that Campbell turned down “my last three Hugo winners,” by which he would have meant “Starship Troopers,” “Stranger in a Strange Land” and “The Moon is a Harsh Mistress.” JWC may also have turned down “Farnham’s Freehold.” It isn’t likely that Heinlein submitted “Glory Road” to him, since it’s a sword-and-sorcery fantasy.

  8. I can see Campbell not wanting anything to do with “Stranger”, but I’d have thought he’d like “Troopers” and “Moon”.

  9. Good point, Lurkertype. But perhaps by this time the two of them had become so estranged that Campbell wouldn’t have accepted anything from Heinlein no matter what. So, why did Heinlein keep sending him stuff? Maybe because ASF was still the highest-paying sf market (Heinlein was always conscious of the monetary value of his work), or maybe Heinlein thought he still heal the rift with Campbell. It’s fascinating to speculate, but we’ll never know.

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