By all accounts, the hardest category this year because the quality of the novels involved was extremely high. Our three finalists are Kingdom of Souls by Rena Barron, The Ten Thousand Doors to January by Alix E. Harrow, and Realm of Ash by Tasha Suri.
Two very different offerings made it to the shortlist, and both are favourites of mine so I have no idea how I am going to choose. Our two finalists are All City by Alex DiFrancesco and A Memory Called Empire by Arkady Martine.
It's always the category I find the most interesting because it isn't bound by genre tropes. Novels in it aren't afraid to bend the rules, to explore just a little further. This year's finalists certainly do that. They are David Mogo, God Hunter by Suyi Davis Okungbowa, The Migration by Helen Marshall, and Gideon the Ninth by Tamsyn Muir.
So much goodness in the series category, and a good occasion to discover series I had missed when they were first released. Choices were made and they were difficult, but our two worthy finalists are Rosewater by Tade Thompson and Elemental Logic by Laurie J. Marks.
A hard fought category, as always, which, this year again, reflected how much this form suits every genre and isn't afraid of experimenting. Our two finalists are This is How You Lose the Time War by Amal El-Mohtar and Max Gladstone, and The Deep by Rivers Solomon.
It has become cliché to say that we're in a Golden Age for short works but it has become a cliché because it's been proven true again and again. Our two finalists are "The Migration Suite: A Study in C Sharp Minor" by Maurice Broaddus and "The Ocean That Fades Into Sky" by Kathleen Kayembee.
What now? The second round is open! Some of us will jump in categories they weren't able to take part in for the first round (which may mean books to catch up), debates will happen. Wailing and bribing probably too as we will try to defend our favourites.
We cannot give you yet a date for the results, but they will happen!
"While we were reading" is an irregular feature about reading science-fiction and fantasy. Nothing fancy, come as you are.
It is also home to all the Subjective Chaos Kind of Awards announcements.