2015 Gemmell Legend Award Voting Now Open

The 2015 Gemmell Legend Award, an internet vote for the Best Fantasy Novel of the year, is now open for voting! The finalist are:

Half a King by Joe Abercrombie (HarperCollins)
Valour by John Gwynne (Pan Macmillan/Tor UK)
Prince of Fools by Mark Lawrence (HarperCollins)
Words of Radiance by Brandon Sanderson (Gollancz)
The Broken Eye by Brent Weeks (Orbit)

Cast your vote here.

I find the Gemmell a fascinating award for several reasons. First, this is true “open internet vote” award: anyone can vote, and it pulls in a very different voting audience than the “pay to vote” Hugo. As such, you get a very different feel in this award: very populist, very mainstream, very best-sellery. Second, the Gemmell moves perpendicular to the other SFF awards: this and the World Fantasy Award couldn’t be more different in terms of the books they honor. The Gemmell is all about big epic series fantasy, whereas the other awards avoid such novels like the plague.

In my meta-awards tracking, I track 15 different SFF awards. Not a single of these 5 authors was nominated for any of the other 14 awards. To be fair, the major fantasy nominees (the World Fantasy and British Fantasy) haven’t been announced yet. I could see Abercrombie grabbing a nomination in one of those, but not the other Gemmell finalists.

This Gemmell will be a fascinating contest. We have three former winners going head-to-head in a fantasy deathmatch: Mark Lawrence (2014 winner for Emperor of Thorns), Brent Weeks (2013 winner for The Blinding Knife), and Brandon Sanderson (2011 winner for The Way of Kings). Add in Joe Abercrombie, and you probably have the most competitive Gemmell ever.

I think the Gemmell boils down to pretty much a popularity contest. In that case, Sanderson should win, as he’s the most popular of these big “epic” fantasy writers. In this case, the broad sweep of Goodreads can help. Check how popular these books are in terms of ratings on that site:

Words of Radiance: 52,766 ratings, 4.76 average
The Blinding Knife: 26,911 ratings, 4.46 average
Half a King: 12,067 ratings, 4.01 aveage
Prince of Fools: 5,933 ratings, 4.10 average
Valour: 1,566 ratings 4.42 average

A clear Sanderson advantage, no?



3 responses to “2015 Gemmell Legend Award Voting Now Open”

  1. MadProfessah says :

    Yeah but I would urge a vote for The Broken Eye–it’s a really really good series.

  2. Bryn says :

    Sanderson had a similar advantage last year and didn’t win. Lawrence is considerable more literary than Abercrombie and has been shortlisted for other awards.

    • chaoshorizon says :

      Fair enough, but did people see Wheel of Time as more Jordan than Sanderson? What’s great about this year is we’ll get a real sense of how this is award is going to work for the future, depending on whether Lawrence, Sanderson, Weeks, or Abercrombie wins. Is it going to be a single dominant author award, or a spread the wealth award, a grimdark award, or what? I’m looking forward to finding out.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Xeno Swarm

Multiple Estrangements in Philosophy and Science Fiction


Pluralism and Individuation in a World of Becoming

Space and Sorcery

Adventures in speculative fiction

The BiblioSanctum

A Book Blog for Speculative Fiction, Graphic Novels... and more!

The Skiffy and Fanty Show

Running away from the thought police on wings of gossamer and lace...

Relentless Reading

"A Veritable Paladin of Blogging!"


A little about me, a lot about books, and a dash of something else

Far Beyond Reality

Science Fiction and Fantasy Reviews

Andrew Liptak

three more from on high

Eamo The Geek

The Best In Sci-Fi And Fantasy Book Reviews by Eamon Ambrose

Read & Survive

How-To Read Books

Mountain Was Here

writing like a drunken seismograph

The Grimdark Review

The very best of fantasy.

SFF Book Reviews

random thoughts about fantasy & science fiction books

Philip K. Dick Review

A Re-read Project

Notes From the Darknet

Book reviews and literary discussion

%d bloggers like this: