What you need to know about the 6 novels up for the 2014 Nebula Awards

If you’re looking for a new sci-fi or fantasy novel to dig into for this freezing winter, we have some well-vetted recommendations.

The Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA) has announced its six nominees for the 2014 Nebula Awards, which is voted on by writers and tasked with choosing the best genre literature of the year. This year there are more than a few great contestants in the top novel category. Not to mention the full finalists list for everything from short stories to novellas.

Novel nominations range from ambitious fantasy tales that border on modern-day Shakespearean drama to epic space operas that don’t just aim to build worlds — they build full-fledged galaxies. We’ve broken down the six longform finalists below, and exactly why we believe they made the cut.

Check out the list below and let us know who you think should take home the top prize. Or, if there’s anything here you haven’t read, head out to the local bookstore to make sure you have something to keep you busy while the world freezes.

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