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Topic: SF reading in 2008 - BEST OF

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Subject: SF reading in 2008 - BEST OF
Date Posted: 1/1/2009 2:03 PM ET
Member Since: 7/26/2006
Posts: 385
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What books?  Stories?  Doesn't matter when they were published.

I usually rate my books 1-5 stars.  Here's my 2008 list with the 5 star rating:

Undertow, E Bear
Halting State, C Stross
River of Gods, I McDonald
Iron Kissed, P Biggs
Atrocity Archives, C Stross
Kitty and the Silver Bullet, C Vaughn
My Own Kind of Freedom, S Brust
The Winds of Marble Arch, C Willis
Firewatch, C Willis
Small Favor, J Butcher
Judge, K Traviss
James Tiptree Jr: The Double Life of Alice B. Sheldon, J Phillips
Duma Key, S King
Air, G Ryman
Cry Wolf, P Briggs
Dust, E Bear
Shadow of the Scorpion, N Asher
Blood Pact, T Huff
Smoke and Mirrors, T Huff
Valor's Choice, T Huff
Smole and Ashes, T Huff
The Better Part of Valor, T Huff

Matt C. (mattc) - ,
Date Posted: 1/1/2009 2:18 PM ET
Member Since: 8/13/2008
Posts: 3,849
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Hmm.  I don't rate books that way, but here are the ones I strongly recommend.  Using SF/F very broadly:

  1. Seed to Harvest by Octavia Butler (Patternist series omnibus)
  2. Song of Ice and Fire series by George R.R. Martin
  3. The Host by Stephenie Meyer
  4. Yarrow by Charles de Lint
  5. The Accidental Time Machine by Joe Haldeman
  6. Blood series by Tanya Huff (yes, all six)
  7. Storm Front by Jim Butcher
  8. Smoke and Shadows by Tanya Huff
  9. Now Wait for Last Year by Philip K. Dick
  10. Confederation series by Tanya Huff (I've read the first three)
  11. Anita Blake series by Laurell K. Hamilton (I've read the first three)
  12. Araminta Station by Jack Vance
  13. Summon the Keeper by Tanya Huff

Edit - Just to add a few of short stories...I read a collection called The Secret History of Vampires.  Some of the stories were clunkers, but these were good:

"Two Hunters in Manhattan" by Mike Resnick
"Smoke and Mirrors" by P.D. Cacek
"Garbo Quits" by Ron Goulart
"Sepulchres of the Undead" by Keith Taylor



Last Edited on: 1/1/09 2:26 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 1/1/2009 3:09 PM ET
Member Since: 3/15/2008
Posts: 389
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I rate mine with letter grades. I read a total of 89 SF/Fantasy/Horror books this year (out of 169 total) and gave an "A" to these:

Heart-Shaped Box, Joe Hill

Judge, Karen Traviss

Hunting Party, Elizabeth Moon

A Crack in the Line, Michael Lawrence

Victory of Eagles, Naomi Novik

Dragon's Eye, James Hetley

Mystic and Rider, Sharon Shinn

Sixty Days and Counting, Kim Stanley Robinson

Odyssey, Jack McDevitt

Spin, Robert Charles Wilson

Greywalker, Kat Richardson

Snake Agent, Liz Williams

Subject: my favorite reads from 2008
Date Posted: 1/2/2009 10:15 PM ET
Member Since: 3/25/2006
Posts: 723
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  • The Speed of Dark, by Elizabeth Moon
  • Ranbows End, by Vernor Vinge
  • A Hidden Place, by Robert Charles Wilson
  • Mammoth, by John Varley
  • Moonfall, by Jack McDevitt
  • Stardust, by Neil Gaiman
  • The Yiddish Policeman's Union, by Michael Chabon
  • Sunstorm, by Clarke/Baxter
  • Downward to the Earth, by Robert Silverberg
  • Anansi Boys, by Neil Gaiman
  • The Stone Canal, by Ken MacLeod


  • Ignorance, by Milan Kundera
  • S., by Slavenka Drakulić
  • The Namesake, by Jhumpa Lahiri


Last Edited on: 1/3/09 5:02 PM ET - Total times edited: 2
Date Posted: 1/3/2009 1:24 AM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
Posts: 15,484
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Damn.  Pulled out my faves and most aren't quite SF.

Sarah A Hoyt  Draw One in the Dark and Gentleman Takes a Chance

Nina K Hoffman Spirits that Walk in Shadows

William Gibson  Pattern Recognition

Kat Richardson Greywalker

Kelley Eskridge Short Stories

Ellen Kushner Privilege of the Sword

re read Dragon Blood and Dragon Bones by Patty Briggs

Grave series by Charlaine Harris

Endless Blue by Wen Spencer, maybe.  She is usually on my list but this one I'll have to think about.

Subject: Briggs
Date Posted: 1/3/2009 5:12 PM ET
Member Since: 7/26/2006
Posts: 385
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re read Dragon Blood and Dragon Bones by Patty Briggs


I'm not much for fantasy but I loved Patricia Briggs' Mercy Thompson series.  I take it you'd recommend the two Dragon books.

Snake Agent, Liz Williams


Well huh, really?  I remember that being the first of a series and wasn't all that impressed.  Have you read anything further?

Date Posted: 1/3/2009 7:29 PM ET
Member Since: 1/2/2008
Posts: 174
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Looked at my list of what I read, and it seems I was disappointed more often than not. And ended up re-reading a lot.

Here are the ones I liked ...

  • Adams, John Joseph (ed)    Wastelands
  • Carlson, Jeff    Plague Years
  • Czerneda, Julie (ed)    Space, Inc
  • Elliott, Kate    Jaran
  • McDonald, Sandra    Outback Stars
  • Mitchell, Syne    Changeling Plague
  • Moon, Elizabeth    Engaging the Enemy
  • Pfeffer, Susan Beth    Life as we Knew it
  • Rankin, Robert    Hollow Chocolate Bunnies of the Apocalypse
  • Richards, Leigh    Calafia's Daughters
  • Scalzi, John    Old Man's War
  • Scalzi, John    Ghost Brigades
  • Scalzi, John    Last Colony
  • Scalzi, John    Zoe's Tale
  • Spencer, Wen    Brother's Price
  • Spencer, Wen    Endless Blue
  • Steele, Allen    Spindrift
  • Stross, Charles    Family Trade
  • Van Name, Mark    One Jump Ahead
  • White, James    Final Diagnosis
Subject: Briggs
Date Posted: 1/3/2009 9:37 PM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
Posts: 15,484
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I'd definitely recommend the two Dragon books.  I've repeatedly reread them.  Wasn't as thrilled with her Raven series.  Quite happy with Mercy and Anna.