Book - Arthur C Clarke Award

30th clarke

The winner of the 30th Arthur C Clarke Award has been announced...

Children of Time by Adrian Tchaikovsky has been named the winner of this year's Arthur C Clarke award in a ceremony held last nightat Foyles, Charing Cross Road in London.

Published in the UK by Pan Macmillan, Children of Time is a post-humanity novel where the last of the human race leave a dying Earth behind and discover a new planet habitable for human life. But this planet is not unoccupied and just waiting for them—instead, it is home to the Spiders, who have reached levels of evolution and intelligence to match (and perhaps outpace) the human survivors.

Accepting his award, Tchaikovsky praised the other five novels on the shortlist for a recurring theme:

“It’s a book about spiders, but it’s also a book about empathy. One of the things that struck me about the shortlist for this year is empathy as a theme that runs through a lot of these books. Empathy across races, across borders… One of the things the book is about is the ability of humanity to seize value in things that are different, and the danger when that doesn’t happen. I guess what I’m saying is, the spiders are not from outer space after all, they are, in a way, in all of us.”

The other books shortlisted for the award were:

The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet – Becky Chambers (Hodder & Stoughton)
Europe at Midnight – Dave Hutchinson (Solaris)
The Book of Phoenix – Nnedi Okorafor (Hodder & Stoughton)
Arcadia – Iain Pears (Faber & Faber)Way Down Dark – J.P. Smythe (Hodder & Stoughton)

It was also announced at the awards ceremony that there would be a change in the rules next year to allow submissions from "Digital First" e-books and self-published authors for the first time. Other announcements of plans for next year include A new award, the Nomo Award for African speculative and science fiction, a link up with Ada Lovelace Day to celebrate the achievements of women in STEM and big plans for the Clarke centennial next year, including a conference organised by Andrew Butler.

The Arthur C. Clarke Award was established with a grant from Sir Arthur in 1986. The prize money (initially £1,000) for the Arthur C. Clarke Award was to be given to the best science fiction novel published in Britain in the previous year. In 2001 the prize was increased to £2,001 and its value now matches the year (e.g., £2016 in 2016). 

Read an extract of Children of Time here.

Image - Clarke Awards

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