The Kitschies, the annual tentacle-themed prize for works containing elements of the “speculative and fantastic,” have released their shortlists for the most “progressive, intelligent, and entertaining” fiction of 2015.
This year’s shortlists have been narrowed down from 176 submissions, coming from over 40 different publishers and imprints. Award Director Glen Mehn praised the pool of books from which the judges chose the shortlist:
There are books not on the shortlist that I’ve been pushing into friends’ hands because they’re so absolutely amazing—the ones on the shortlist are beautiful, heartbreaking, funny, dark, and do things with stories that defy the imagination.
Congratulations to all of the finalists—we can’t wait to see who will take home the coveted squid statue!
The Red Tentacle (Novel), judged by Sarah Lotz, James Smythe, Nikesh Shukla, Nazia Khatun, and Glen Mehn:
- The Heart Goes Last by Margaret Atwood (Bloomsbury)
- Europe at Midnight by Dave Hutchinson (Solaris)
- The Reflection by Hugo Wilcken (Melville House)
- The Fifth Season by N. K. Jemisin (Orbit)
- The Thing Itself by Adam Roberts (Gollancz)
The Golden Tentacle (Debut), also judged by Sarah Lotz, James Smythe, Nikesh Shukla, Nazia Khatun, and Glen Mehn:
- The Shore by Sara Taylor (William Heinemann)
- Blackass by A. Igoni Barrett (Chatto and Windus)
- The Gracekeepers by Kirsty Logan (Harvill Secker)
- The Night Clock by Paul Meloy (Solaris)
- Making Wolf by Tade Thompson (Rosarium)
The Inky Tentacle (Cover Art), judged by Sarah McIntyre, Dapo Adeola, Regan Warner, and Lauren O’Farrell:
- The Vorrh by Brian Catling, design by Pablo Declan (Coronet)
- Monsters by Emerald Fennell, art direction by Jet Purdie, illustration by Patrick Leger (Hot Key Books)
- The Honours by Tim Clare, design and illustration by Peter Adlington (Canongate)
- The Door that Led to Where by Sally Gardner, art direction and design by Jet Purdie, illustration by Dover Publications Inc & Shutterstock (Hot Key Books)
- Get in Trouble by Kelly Link, design by Alex Merto (Canongate)
The Invisible Tentacle (Natively Digital Fiction), judged by James Wallis, Rebecca Levene, and Em Short:
- Arcadia by Iain Pears (Faber/Touchpress)
- Life Is Strange (Square Enix)
- Daniel Barker’s Birthday by @FrogCroakley
- The Last Hours of Laura K (BBC Writers Room)
- Bloodborne (Hidetaka Miyazaki/FromSoftware)
The winners will be announced in a ceremony at the Star of Kings on March 7 in London. The Kitschies, sponsored by Fallen London, is in its seventh year.
Art: Steven Noble/Kraken Rum