If you’re nominating for the Hugo, Nebula, or other awards for 2021, consider the two titles we published this year: THE IMPOSSIBLE RESURRECTION OF GRIEF by Octavia Cade, and AFTER THE DRAGONS by Cynthia Zhang. Read more about these books and their reception below.
THE IMPOSSIBLE RESURRECTION OF GRIEF by Octavia Cade
Category: Novella (23,000 words)
Genre: Science Fiction/Horror
Cade’s novella received a many glowing reviews, one of which was written by Alexander Pyles and published by the Chicago Review of Books.
With the collapse of ecosystems and the extinction of species comes the Grief: an unstoppable melancholia that ends in suicide. When Ruby’s friend, mourning the loss of the Great Barrier Reef, succumbs to the Grief, the letters she leaves behind reveal the hidden world of the resurrected dead. The Tasmanian tiger, brought back from extinction in an isolated facility, is only the first… but rebirth is not always biological, and it comes with a price. As a scientist, Ruby resists the Grief by focusing her research on resilient jellyfish, but she can’t avoid choosing which side she’s on. How can she fight against the dead and the forces behind them when doing so risks her home, her life, and the entire biosphere?
AFTER THE DRAGONS by Cynthia Zhang
Category: Novel (47,000 words)
Cynthia Zhang’s debut novel received a stellar review from Leah Rachel von Essen for The Ancillary Review of Books and was featured on BuzzFeed as one of August’s Best books.
Dragons were fire and terror to the Western world, but in the East they brought life-giving rain. Now, no longer hailed as gods and struggling in the overheated pollution of Beijing, only the Eastern dragons survive. As drought plagues the aquatic creatures, a mysterious disease—shaolong, or “burnt lung”—afflicts the city’s human inhabitants.
Jaded college student Xiang Kaifei scours Beijing streets for abandoned dragons, distracting himself from his diagnosis. Elijah Ahmed, a biracial American medical researcher, is drawn to Beijing by the memory of his grandmother and her death by shaolong. Interest in Beijing’s dragons leads Kai and Eli into an unlikely partnership. With the resources of Kai’s dragon rescue and Eli’s immunology research, can the pair find a cure for shaolong and safety for the dragons? Eli and Kai must confront old ghosts and hard truths if there is any hope for themselves or the dragons they love.