This is a good reflection of what happens in the Romanian sci fi and fantasy world and as well as on the local book market.
The winners are:
- Best translated sci fi novel - Hyperion by Dan Simmons
- Best translated fantasy novel - A Storm of Swords by George R.R. Martin
- Best horror novel - The Call of Ctulhu by H.P. Lovecraft
- Best Romanian novel - Guardian Angel by George Lazar
- Best anthology/collection - Wastelands by Ed. John Joseph Adams
- Best translated short story - Dark, Dark Were the Tunnels by George R.R. Martin
- Best Romanian short story - The Epidemic by Sebastian A. Corn
- Best translation - Hyperion by Dan Simmons, translator Mihai Dan Pavelescu
- Best cover art - The Drawing of the Three by Stephen King
All I can say is that I didn't like Hyperion that much. Sure, it's well written and well translated and that made it an easy read, but it just didn't do it for me. I kept feeling that something was lacking in some way. To that added the fact that I'm not really into fantasy and I can't stand novels that don't explain everything and stop shortly urging you to buy the sequel if you want to find out the answers to all the questions. As a result, and also as a protest, I didn't and I won't.
Something similar happened to Dark, Dark Were the Tunnels. It was my first encounter with George R. R. Martin's prose, and I could tell he writes well, very well even, but again it was not my cup of tea. It wasn't the writer's fault, this is a matter of personal taste, but it's not enough for a story to be well-written, I have to like what a story tells/shows me too, and in this case I didn't.
Regrets: I would have liked The Last Message is Eternity by Danut Ungureanu to win, but then again I haven't read The Epidemic yet so who knows, maybe I'd like this one better. If it's anything like the story published in the SRSFF anthology then I won't. The other regret is related to the fact that Dancing on Mars didn't win for Best Cover Art, and how Dune: The Machine's Crusade got more votes is beyond me. On a side note The Machine's Crusade was even worse than The Butlerian Jihad and I'm not talking about the cover, but the writing style and translation too.
What I gained from this voting process: it made me glad that I didn't waste my time reading some of the books I've read last year whether I liked them or not. It also made me curious to read the winning Romanian novel and short story, though I'm not sure where to find The Epidemic yet.
About the polls: nominating was difficult, but voting was easy in most categories. It was nice to see they've learned something from last year's voting process and didn't show the partial results this time. It looks like the votes are more balanced compared to last year, but it's hard to tell because the results are all scrambled. They should have been sorted or have some charts with different length bars to see them better. Maybe next time.
Anyway, congratulations to the entire CititorSF team for their initiative.
Full result list can be found here.