Books

Canadian writers C.L. Polk and Silvia Moreno-Garcia among World Fantasy Awards finalists

The annual awards celebrate outstanding fantasy writers in eight categories. Polk's The Midnight Bargain and Moreno-Garcia's Mexican Gothic are both finalists in the best novel category.
C.L. Polk (left) and Silvia Moreno-Garcia (right) are finalists for the World Fantasy Award for best novel. (Mike Tan, Martin Dee)

Canadian novelists Silvia Moreno-Garcia and C.L. Polk are two of the finalists for the 2021 World Fantasy Awards.

The annual awards celebrate outstanding fantasy writers in eight categories.

Moreno-Garcia's Mexican Gothic and Polk's The Midnight Bargain are both finalists in the best novel category.

Mexican Gothic is a haunted house story, underpinned with themes of feminism and class, set in a 1950s mining village in Mexico. The book follows a young socialite named Noemí Taboada, who receives a letter from her cousin begging for help from her countryside home. Noemí travels to the alluring estate, High Place, where she investigates the wealthy family her cousin married into.

The novel is a New York Times bestseller and a winner of the 2020 Goodreads Readers Choice Awards

Moreno-Garcia is a Mexican Canadian author currently living in Vancouver. Her other novels include Gods of Jade and Shadow, The Beautiful OnesUntamed Shore and the upcoming book, Velvet Was the Night. She is also a critic and has edited science fiction anthologies. 

Polk's nominated fantasy novel The Midnight Bargain follows a young woman named Beatrice, who dreams of becoming a magician. But in her world, only men are allowed to wield the power of spirits and Beatrice is relegated to finding a suitable husband at "bargaining season." Instead, Beatrice schemes, along with newfound friends, to upend the patriarchal society of magic.

The Midnight Bargain was defended by Canadian track legend Rosey Edeh on Canada Reads 2021. It's also up for best novel at the 2021 Igynte Awards.

Polk is a fantasy writer from Calgary. They are the author of the Kingston Cycle trilogy, which includes Witchmark, Stormsong and Soulstar. Witchmark won the 2019 World Fantasy Award for best novel.

Canada Reads 2021: The Midnight Bargain by C.L. Polk

1 year ago
Duration 1:04
Rosey Edeh is championing The Midnight Bargain on Canada Reads 2021.

The judges for this year's awards are Tobias Buckell, Siobhan Carroll, Cecilia Dart-Thornton, Brian Evenson and Patrick Swenson.

The World Fantasy Awards are part of the World Fantasy Convention. Established in 1975 in Providence, Rhode Island, the convention is an annual gathering and reunion of professionals, collectors and others interested in fantasy art and literature.

The 2021 World Fantasy Convention will be held in Montreal from Nov. 4 to 7.

You can find the full list of finalists in eight award categories below.

Best Novel

  • Piranesi by Susanna Clarke
  • Trouble the Saints by Alaya Dawn Johnson
  • The Only Good Indians by Stephen Graham Jones
  • Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia 
  • The Midnight Bargain by C.L. Polk

Best Novella

  • Ring Shout, or Hunting Ku Kluxes in the End Times by P. Djèlí Clark
  • Stepsister by Leah Cypess
  • Flyaway by Kathleen Jennings
  • The Four Profound Weaves by R.B. Lemberg 
  • Riot Baby by Tochi Onyebuchi 

Best Short Fiction

  • Glass Bottle Dancer by Celeste Rita Baker 
  • The Women Who Sing for Sklep by Kay Chronister 
  • The Nine Scents of Sorrow by Jordan Taylor 
  • My Country Is a Ghost by Eugenia Triantafyllou 
  • Open House on Haunted Hill by John Wiswell 

Best Anthology

  • Edited By edited by Ellen Datlow
  • The Valancourt Book of World Horror Stories, Vol. 1, edited by James D. Jenkins and Ryan Cagle
  • Shadows & Tall Trees 8 edited by Michael Kelly
  • The Book of Dragons edited by Jonathan Strahan
  • The Big Book of Modern Fantasy edited by Ann and Jeff VanderMeer

Best Collection

  • The Best of Jeffrey Ford by Jeffrey Ford 
  • Velocities: Stories by Kathe Koja 
  • Where the Wild Ladies Are by Aoko Matsuda 
  • We All Hear Stories in the Dark by Robert Shearman
  • Nine Bar Blues by Sheree Renée Thomas

Best Artist

  • Rovina Cai
  • Jeffrey Alan Love
  • Reiko Murakami
  • Daniele Serra
  • Charles Vess

Special Award – Professional

  • Clive Bloom for The Palgrave Handbook of Contemporary Gothic
  • C.C. Finlay for F&SF editing
  • Jo Fletcher for Jo Fletcher Books
  • Maria Dahvana Headley for Beowulf: A New Translation
  • Jeffrey Andrew Weinstock for The Monster Theory Reader 

Special Award – Non-Professional

  • Scott H. Andrews for Beneath Ceaseless Skies: Literary Adventure Fantasy
  • Brian Attebery for Journal of the Fantastic in the Arts
  • Michael Kelly for Undertow Publications
  • Arley Sorg and Christie Yant for Fantasy Magazine
  • Lynne M. Thomas and Michael Damian Thomas for Uncanny Magazine

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