They're all good enough books. Of the Harlan Ellison biography, I read only the extract in the packet, and that was enough to convince me that I was unlikely to change my vote if I read any more of it. I think it's surely between Zoe Quinn and Ursula Le Guin this year. We'll see what comes out in the wash. My own votes are:
7) No Award. These are all good enough contributions.
6) A Lit Fuse: The Provocative Life of Harlan Ellison, by Nat Segaloff
Second paragraph of third chapter supplied (actually chapter 6):
Despite this, today there are more critics than ever — not necessarily with credentials, jobs, aesthetics, experience, or talent — just a Twitter account.Ellison is of course a hugely important figure in the history of sf, but this biography really tells it very much from his point of view. And he is really very capable of being a cantankerous asshole; his own account of how he sabotaged his mother's funeral, for instance, is painful reading, especially as Segaloff is desperately trying to make us sympathise with him. (Segaloff also feels the need to explain to us in a footnote that the word "teat" is "the vulgarism for breast".) I think we would have learned more from a more objective and critical approach, even though it might have risked infuriating the subject of the book.
5) Luminescent Threads: Connections to Octavia E. Butler, eds Alexandra Pierce and Mimi Mondal
Reviewed here. Really important subject; was frustrated by the structure.
4) Sleeping with Monsters: Readings and Reactions in Science Fiction and Fantasy, by Liz Bourke
Reviewed here. Lots of good stuff, didn't overlap all that much with my own tastes (which of course I should expand).
3) Iain M. Banks, by Paul Kincaid
Reviewed here. I actually nominated this, but was more convinced by my top two votes.
2) No Time to Spare: Thinking About What Matters, by Ursula K. Le Guin
Reviewed here. Tremendously wise essays from the much-missed Le Guin. I think it is quite likely to win, unless voters agree with my first choice which is:
1) Crash Override: How Gamergate (Nearly) Destroyed My Life, and How We Can Win the Fight Against Online Hate, by Zoe Quinn
Reviewed here. I think this is a crucial book that speaks to the unfortunate spirit of the age, and it gets my vote.
2018 Hugos: Novel | Novella | Novelette | Short Story | Related Work | Graphic Story | Dramatic Long | Dramatic Short | Professional Artist & Fan Artist | Series | Young Adult | Campbell Award
1943 Retro Hugos: Novel | Novella | Novelette | Short Story | Dramatic Short | Fan Artist