First ever Gemmell Award winners announced.
Wed, June 24, 2009 (08:53 PM)
On Friday, June 19, 2009, the first ever David Gemmell Legend Prize ( a fan voted award for fantasy novels and works) was awarded to Polish author Andrzej Sapowski for his novel, Blood of the Elves..
With a reported voter base of over 10,000 readers, the Gemmell Prize was established to recognize works written in the spirit of the late British author, whose 1984 novel Legend has never gone out of print.
An initial pool of 87 nominees from worldwide publishing houses was narrowed to a short list of 5 finalists in early April.
For his inaugural win, Sapkowski receives a replica battle axe, a depiction of the weapon “Snaga” featured in Gemmell's books. The runners-up (Joe Abercrombie The Last Argument of Kings (Pyr, Gollancz), Juliet Marillier The Heir to Seven Waters (TOR UK), Brandon Sanderson The Hero of Ages (TOR), Brent Weeks The Way of Shadows (Orbit)) also receive a miniature version of the prize.
Deborah J. Miller (award administrator and fantasy author) was pleased with the outcome of the event. "Our winning author is already a huge star in Europe and winning the award will hopefully ensure new readers experience his work in the excellent English translation from Gollancz. Genre fantasy is often dismissed as being simply gung-ho or macho, as people outside genre circles tend to imagine it's all about epic battles, weapons and warriors – in fact, it is all of those things and so much more. Contemporary fantasy fiction is about far more than escape to other realities. Freed of the constraints and preconceptions of other kinds of fiction, it holds up a mirror to reflect on this world and time through the prism of vivid characters and enthralling drama that engage the imagination like no other genre."