2015 Geffen Awards

The 2015 Geffen Award winners were announced on October 1 at Icon, the Israeli convention for science fiction, fantasy and role-playing games. (Click on the link to see the original Hebrew titles.)

Best original book

  • Broken Skies by Keren Landsman

Best original short story

  • “Five Four Three Two One” by Hila Benyovich-Hoffman

Best translated SF book

  • The Martian by Andy Weir

Best translated fantasy book

  • The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman

Best translated YA book

  • Ozma of Oz and Dorothy and the Wizard in Oz by L Frank Baum

The Geffen Awards are given each year for the best sf&f books and stories published in Hebrew. The award is presented by the Israeli Society for Science Fiction and Fantasy, and is named after the association’s founder, Amos Geffen.

4 thoughts on “2015 Geffen Awards

  1. Many congrats to my husband’s friend in Wizard of Oz circles, Gili Bar-Hillel, who did the translations of Ozma of Oz and the Wizard of Oz. I’m afraid she’s probably better known for her translation work on a little series called “Harry Potter” that was given to her originally because the publisher didn’t want to do the Oz series.

  2. I really enjoyed the original Israeli short story, Hila Benyovich-Hoffman’s “Five Four Three Two One.”

    It’s got a very inventive premise, where five people are sharing the same body, in a cycle – you go to sleep one day, and the next day somebody else wakes up. And so on, until five days later, it’s your turn again. Central to the story is how these five very different people spend their lives sharing and cooperating, on the most intimate level, with four people they’ve never met in person.

    The story’s also written in an unusual structure, uniquely suited to the premise – we get each character’s POV for one day, and each segment is prefaced with that character’s “journal” – their notes for the day to their fellow characters following them. And the story is spiked with extra tension right from the start, because the first character wakes up with their body self-harmed, with no explanation and no journal – so all four characters are terrified of what might be going on with the fifth.

    In short – a lot of excellent, innovative elements here, all working together in concert. It’s not entirely flawless, but weighed against its ambition and creativity, I think it’s quite the accomplishment. (Oh, and it’s fun, too. 🙂 )

    Link to the original story (Hebrew): http://www.sf-f.org.il/archives/817

  3. Late to the party (how does everyone keep up?), but regarding Hila Benyovich-Hoffman’s Five Four Three Two One, this premise sounds very similar to that of Wyman Guin’s classic novella ‘Beyond Bedlam’ (Galaxy, Aug 1951 – link available in Guin’s Wikipedia entry).

    Of course, Benyovich-Hoffman may well have brought something new and original to the concept. Can anyone contribute a comparison of the two works?

  4. @Terry: Cool! Thanks for the link to “Beyond Bedlam.” (Here’s a direct link, for those following along at home – it’s a streaming scan from archive.org.)

    I’ll give it a read and see if I’ve got anything interesting to say. At first flush, I think it’s fair to say that even if the two stories’ premises have some similarity, the treatment is fundamentally different. Which only makes me more interested in reading it. 🙂

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