Thursday, June 29, 2017

A Hugo Review: Best Fan Writer - Abigail Nussbaum

Another writer I know almost nothing about, Abigail Nussbaum included six pieces in her packet (and a table of contents, yay!). All six were reviews, and of the six works reviewed, I was only familiar with one.

The issues she brings up in each review tend to be fascinating, and she presents her arguments nicely. It's almost like each review is an essay on a topic and the work she brings in just to support the topic. The review of Ex Machina discusses artificial intelligence and the gender of such constructs. Reviews of Luke Cage and The Underground Railroad both discuss race relations and how we view it from a mass media perspective.

She also doesn't shy away from comparing similar works or source material with the works she's reviewing. Her review of Russell T. Davies' adaptation of A Midsummer Night's Dream is compared with the BBC's The Hollow Crown. And her review of Arrival looks at the differences between it and "Story of Your Life" by Ted Chiang, which the movie was based on.

I find her website's name, "Asking the Wrong Questions" to be delightful when comparing her ability to see past the basics and get into a nice piece of meaty issues. She's got the writing chops along with the logical skills, and she's well worthy of a Hugo.

Conclusion: I have no idea how I'm going to end up voting in this category. The order on my ballot will likely change daily until the deadline.