Darkship Thieves, a novel by Sarah Hoyt (Baen Books) won the 2011 Best Novel Prometheus Award. The Hall of Fame award was won by Animal Farm, a short novel written by George Orwell in 1945. Sarah Hoyt received a plaque and a one-ounce gold coin, while a smaller gold coin and a plaque was presented to Orwell’s estate.
Darkship Thieves features an exciting, coming-of-age saga in which a heroic woman fights for her freedom and identity against a tyrannical Earth. Hoyt’s novel, dedicated to Robert A. Heinlein, depicts a plausible anarchist society among the asteroids. Hoyt is a prolific writer of novels and short fiction, though this is her first time as Prometheus Award finalist.
Orwell won the Hall of Fame award for his novel 1984, fittingly, in 1984, the second year the award was given. Animal Farm has been a finalist for the Hall of Fame award multiple times. Animal Farm, a short novel, retells the story of the Russian Revolution in the literary form of a beast fable, reflecting the post-World War II disillusionment of many communists. The story introduced the phrase “All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others,” which has been borrowed innumerable times to pillory many political movements that claimed to be fighting for equality. Orwell’s story is widely considered both a classic work, and a devastating critique of Stalinism.
The other finalists for Best Novel were For the Win, by Cory Doctorow (TOR Books); The Last Trumpet Project, by Kevin MacArdry (www.lasttrumpetproject.com); Live Free or Die, by John Ringo (Baen Books); and Ceres, by L. Neil Smith (Phoenix Pick (print edition) and Big Head Press, online publication at www.bigheadpress.com/lneilsmith/). Ten novels published in 2010 were nominated for the 2011 award.
The other finalists for the Hall of Fame award were “The Machine Stops,” a story by E. M. Forster (1909); “As Easy as A.B.C.,” a story by Rudyard Kipling (1912); “‘Repent, Harlequin!’ Said the Ticktockman,” a story by Harlan Ellison (1965); and Falling Free, a novel by Lois McMaster Bujold (1988).
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