Winners Announced! The 2024 Scifi Debut Novel Award

Apr 1, 2024 – SciFi Zone today announced the winner of its 2024 SciFi Debut Novel Award.

It’s been a condensed few weeks of travelling between distant galaxies, fighting mighty aliens and overcoming fierce magic, but finally – a winner has emerged!

What a year for Science Fiction!

This year’s ScifiZone Debut Novel Award has seen one of the most prolific years in Scifi writing and publishing – with distant, speculative worlds reaching an unprecedented number of readers worldwide.

It has also been a good year for screen adaptations with a wider audience exposed to our genre than ever before.

Our process

Our evaluation has taken into account many facets of the genre, industry and market potential of the submitted works, including: Originality, emotional depth, scientific clarity, world-building, lasting power and overall impression of the work in a genre susceptible to falling into tropes and me-toos.

Award winner prizes

As per the award rules, the winner will be awarded the following prize package:

  • $7,500 cash award (inclusive of all VAT, taxes and levies where applicable)
  • A front page author interview on the Scifi.Zone website and social media pages, sticky for 7 days.
  • A digital media kit of badges, social media banners and printable award sticker for inclusion on any marketing material the author may choose to announce their win.

So without further ado, we are proud to announce the 2024 SciFi Zone Debut Novel Award:

Generations

A Science Fiction Political Mystery Thriller by Noam Josephides

SciFi Zone Review of “Generations”

Like the best Science Fiction classics, Generations reminds us that the future is a canvas of our making, and with it – our definition of being Human.

The novel is set on the generation-ship “Thetis”, which has been making its way to find a new home for humanity for over 8 generations. The plot revolves around Sandrine Liet, an introvert, sassy and quirky female archivist, whose elaborate journey begins with a simple task of interviewing the Thetis elected leader, Sebastian Anderson. Anderson has been undergoing an extortion attempt by one of the ship’s scientists, related to a seemingly marginal scientific project. Sandrine is tasked with investigating the case, and – as expected from the book’s mystery/detective genre – opens a can of worms in which every step she takes and every stone she turns, new clues to a grand conspiracy threaten to overshadow humanity’s entire future.

Or is it?

“Generations” succeeds to extend beyond its genre in a brilliant way by confronting its protagonist with one of the smartest, most sophisticated and charismatic political rivals we’ve read lately. Nothing is what it seems. Every clue has a perfectly benign explanation. And the antagonist puppet-master is protected by seemingly endless layers of front-persons and plausible deniabilities. In quite the timely fashion, Sandrine’s investigation quickly turns from the pursuit of objective truth to a battle over narrative and public perception. At times, we too considered that the whole so-called conspiracy is nothing but the lonely archivist’s paranoia, and that she is on the fast-track to self destruction if she insists on rattling the Thetis’ political hornet’s nest.

Noam Josephides’ talent carries the scents of Polanski’s “Chinatown” all the way to outer-space.

The novel’s true brilliance shines in the evident thinking that went into the worldbuilding of a society where Earth is but a distant memory. There’s is a lot to digest throughout the 450-odd page novel – from the evolution of language and idioms in a world where some basic realities had no longer been present for 180 years (think: how many of our daily phrases and metaphors refer to animals or natural phenomena – both devoid for almost two centuries on the Thetis?), to the adaptation of social values, economic incentives and family structures in a world trying to ensure survival in a flying can across the galaxy.

Like many cultural works dealing with political-conspiracy, Josephides is clearly interested in a much wider array of questions beyond the “whodunnit” plot: the examination of moral values, societal structures and personal ambition as foundational aspects of our species nature, and the if and how we can transcend them if we want to survive long-term.

Final thoughts

“Generations” is a promising debut novel that leaves a lot to wish for in the next works of Noam Josephides – it is thought-provoking, innovative and brimming with emotional depth!

The book”Generations” is SciFi Zone’s winner of the Debut Novel Award for 2024

Generations author
Noam Josephides