Baltimore Science Fiction Society Announces 2023 Compton Crook Finalists

The Baltimore Science Fiction Society (BSFS) has released the names of the six finalists for its 2023 Compton Crook Award for best first novel in the science fiction, fantasy, and horror genres. The finalists are:

  • Daughter of the Moon Goddess by Sue Lynn Tan (Harper Voyager)
  • Bluebird by Ciel Pierlot (Angry Robot)
  • The Ballad of Perilous Graves by Alex Jennings (Redhook)
  • The Genesis of Misery by Neon Yang (Tor)
  • Obsidian by Sarah J.  Daley (Angry Robot)
  • The Bone Orchard by Sara Mueller  (Tor)

The award includes a framed award document and, for the novel’s author, a check for $1,000 and an invitation to be the Compton Crook Guest of Honor at Balticon (the BSFS annual convention) for two years. Balticon is held in Baltimore over Memorial Day Weekend, May 26-29.

Members of BSFS selected the finalists by reading and rating debut novels published between Nov 1, 2021 and October 31, 2022. The last round of reading and rating will close April 7th and the winner will be notified on Sunday, April 9th and announced to the public on Monday, April 10th.

Recognizing the importance of new writers, the Baltimore Science Fiction Society (BSFS) has been giving out the Compton Crook Award for best first novel since 1983. Past winners have included Donald Kingsbury, Elizabeth Moon, Michael Flynn, Wen Spencer, Maria Snyder, Naomi Novik, Paolo Bacigalupi, Myke Cole, Charles Gannon, Fran Wilde, Ada Palmer, R.F. Kuang, Arkady Martine, and Micaiah Johnson.  Last year’s winner was P. Djèlí Clark for A Master of Djinn. 

The Award was named in memory of Towson State College Professor of Natural Sciences Compton Crook, who wrote under the name Stephen Tall, and who died in 1981. Professor Crook was active for many years in the Baltimore Science Fiction Society and was a staunch champion of new works in the fields eligible for the award. More details available here.

BSFS thanks the authors and publishers who sent books for consideration. Reading and rating books for the 2024 award will begin this summer. For more information contact [email protected].

BSFS is a 501(c)(3), non-profit, charitable, literary and educational organization, dedicated to the promotion of, and an appreciation for, science fiction in all of its many forms. The Baltimore Science Fiction Society was launched on January 5, 1963 and has been holding Balticon since 1967.

[Based on a press release.]


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