We are desperately trying to figure out WHY you haven’t dropped everything and started reading these books! What’s wrong with you?
Darkcargo: I read more this year, and more wonderful books this year than I have done since I was a kid, I think. How can I possibly pick the best? They were all the “best”! But here are a few that just rocked my world:
1) Beloved, Toni Morrison, a cracking good ghost story: the very real, human horrors induce a subtle and beautiful visit from the supernatural.
2) Leviathan Wakes, James S. A. Corey, space opera, reborn: most whistle blower conspiracy novels end in this book’s Chapter Two.
3) Who Fears Death, Nnedki Okorafor, realized fantasy derived from modern Africa: for once, I agree with a nationally-recognized book award (World Fantasy Book Award, 2010)
4) Redemption in Indigo, Karen Lord, Paami leaves her good-fer-nuthin’ husband: such a seemingly simple tale has not so simple consequences.
(p.s. plus also I really loved reading Watership Down by Richard Adams, Hand of Isis by Jo Graham, Changes by Jim Butcher, Kim by Rudyard Kipling, Babylon by I. Finkel, Dracula by Brahm Stoker, Sign of the Four by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovitch by Alexander Solinitzyhn, To Trade the Stars, Julie Czerneda, The Sword in the Stone by T. S. White…)
nrlymrt: Either I need to get out more, or you need to stick your nose in a book more. No middle ground. It was SO HARD to chose just the top 4 for me this year. So, I limited myself to the top 4 scifi/fantasy, and that made it ALMOST possible. I mean, I had so many awesome books to pick from this year: Guy Gavriel Kay’s A Song for Arbonne and Under Heaven, Samuel Delaney’s Babel-17 and Empire Star, Jacqueline Carey’s Naamah’s Kiss and Naamah’s Curse, Catherine Asaro’s Aurora in Four Voices, etc.
1) The Warchild Trilogy (Warchild, Burndive, Cagebird) by Karin Lowachee. These three books were great space opera and also great at capturing the human condition. My standard for what a serious scifi book can capture has been redefined.
2) The Foundation Trilogy by Isaac Asimov. I know they have been around forever, but they were new to me. And, like the Frank Herbert Dune series, they pushed the boundaries of my world – my universe – outward a little bit more.
3) Changes and, really, just the whole Dresden Files series, by Jim Butcher. In changes, our hero Harry Dresden looses so much. I love how the author keeps challenging and growing this character. I am nearly done with Ghost Story, the latest in the series, and it has been most excellent as well.
4) The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms and The Broken Kingdoms by NK Jemisin. These tales were not like anything else I have stumbled upon. Truly, if I could marry this trilogy and birth it a baby, I would.
Jonah– Top 3 Conventions for Readers in the Mid-Atlantic Region (No Particular Order)
Most Sci-Fi Cons have tracks for readers and writers but these three are focused with their programming to give bibliophiles the optimum word-focused weekends.
1) Name of the Wind and Wise Man’s Fear - Patrick Rothfuss: I never read fantasy, I used to think I wouldn’t like it, since all the ones I tried to read (not counting The Hobbit) were disappointing. My friend made me read these though, and I’m so glad! Rothfuss is a new favorite for me. It’s hard to describe the book, but once I got into it, I knew I’d never get out. Since Name of the Wind, I’ve picked up more fantasy to read.
2) Fever Dream – Preston & Child: this is a new trilogy from them about Pendeergast and his past. The very first book, Relic, breifly mentioned he was a widower and now they finally started telling the story. I loved it not just because I’m bonkers for these guys and their adventure/mystery novels, but because the ending was great. What a cliffhanger! Cannot wait to read the next one.
3) Dinosaurs in the Attic – Douglas Preston: I got to meet him at a book signing this year! Somone asked which books were his favorite that he and his co-author wrote. Dinosaurs was his favorite non-fiction. If you love museums, this book is wonderful. He touches on so many interesting stories that are wound into the collections of the museum. It was so cool to read about what it los like behind the scenes. I can’t wait to visit the American Museum of Natural History someday. It also has a good dose of sciency stuff in it, which made it all the more interesting for me.
4) Time Cursor – John Krygelski: I wrote a review about this one earlier. I’m still having fun thinking about this book long after I read it. I love time travel wibbly wobbly stuff.
If it weren’t for DarkCargo, I’m not sure I would have read as much this year. I made the effort and made time to read again, it was like seeing an old friend again.