Among Others by Jo Walton (Tor)
A Dance With Dragons by George R. R. Martin (Bantam Spectra)
Deadline by Mira Grant (Orbit)
Embassytown by China Miéville (Macmillan / Del Rey)
Leviathan Wakes by James S. A. Corey (Orbit)In addition to Hugo Awards, the Nebula Awards also recognize excellence in speculative fiction, but are voted on by the creators/authors who work in the genre. This year's nominees for the Nebula were announced in February 2012 and there are only two novels which appear on both lists: China Mieville's Embassytown and Jo Walton's Among Others.
I'm pretty excited by this year's Hugo Award Best Novel nominees. First, I have read 3 of the 5 nominees, and loved two of the three. (Click on the hyperlinked titles to see my individual reviews.) I would be very happy if either A Dance with Dragons or Leviathan Wakes won the Hugo (especially if it were the latter, since it is a "debut novel"). James S.A. Corey is a nom de plume of Ty Franck and Daniel Abraham, who are well-known for the proficiency in the area of fantasy writing. Amazingly, in Leviathan Wakes they have written one of the most amazing "hard science fiction" novels of the last decade.
Hat/tip to Whatever.