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Friday, February 19, 2010

If You're Looking for a Book for Your Weekend...

Posted by on Fri, Feb 19, 2010 at 1:36 PM

0765318415.01._SCLZZZZZZZ_SL160_.jpg could actually do a lot worse than take a look at the Nebula Awards shortlist. I generally don't give a damn about awards, but there are more than a few great sci-fi novels up for the award this year.

Nominees include local author Cherie Priest's Boneshaker, which I and many Sloggers enjoyed, China Mieville's The City and the City, which I loved, and books by authors like Jeff Vandermeer, who have produced some really great work in the past.

Seriously, if you like sci-fi, you should write these books down for the next time you're at the bookstore or library; I bet at least one of the books on the list would be right up your alley.


Comments (13) RSS

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crazycatguy 1
My vote for best SF/Fantasy novel of the year is Richard K. Morgan's The Steel Remains. He's the guy who wrote Altered Carbon, one of the best SF novels of all time. Steel Remains is his first fantasy novel.
Posted by crazycatguy on February 19, 2010 at 1:50 PM · Report this
I love the world she's created in Boneshaker, but as an actual book I think it fell flat. I do hope she goes back and explores walled-up, steam punk Seattle again, however.
Posted by Diglot on February 19, 2010 at 1:55 PM · Report this
That's an embarrassing list.
I don't care how much you loove steampunk, Boneshaker = ungood writing/pacing.
Life and the Flesh is more primer than story.
Posted by dirge on February 19, 2010 at 2:14 PM · Report this
coolio 4
IM about 3/4 of the way through Boneshaker and I am really enjoying it.
Posted by coolio on February 19, 2010 at 2:26 PM · Report this
i bought boneshaker a couple weeks ago after reading mr constant's suggestion a while back.
Posted by Jack Shaftoe on February 19, 2010 at 2:30 PM · Report this
I am enjoying Boneshaker quite a bit. I'll probably finish it tonight. Thanks to Paul for suggesting it!
Posted by wingalingDragon on February 19, 2010 at 2:34 PM · Report this
Boneshaker surprised me as a Nebula shortlister. Not that it's bad, but it's less "writerly" than the other books. I'd expect to see it on the Hugo ballot, which is more of a popularity contest.
Posted by mint chocolate chip on February 19, 2010 at 2:45 PM · Report this
I approve of a lot of that list. Read and enjoyed Boneshaker, The Windup Girl, and just about everything by Mr. Mieville. I'll for sure check out the remaining books on it.
Posted by thename on February 19, 2010 at 2:58 PM · Report this
nedludd 9
The City and the City by Mieville wasn't just one of the best science fiction books of the year, it was one of the best books of any genere or none.
Posted by nedludd on February 19, 2010 at 3:21 PM · Report this
Reverse Polarity 10
Boneshaker got on the shortlist for a Nebula? Really? I thought it was okay, but lightweight and more than a bit silly. Too serious at times to be taken as a comedy. Too silly at times to be taken seriously. A fun read, but not Nebula-worthy.

I heartily endorse China Mieville, however. One of my current favorite authors.
Posted by Reverse Polarity on February 19, 2010 at 3:23 PM · Report this
motobourbon 11
Eh. Paul, I have nothing against a love of different genre fiction. And I loved both The City and the City and Boneshaker. But for you the focus is so much on sci-fi, steampunk, and comic books. It gets a bit tedious. This is really no slam on your interests. But, I'd love to see some general literary fiction touted to the same degree as the genre stuff.
Posted by motobourbon on February 19, 2010 at 3:53 PM · Report this
That is indeed an all-star line-up. I noticed that you didn't specifically mention Paolo Bacigalupi (who is nominated for both his novel and a short story). Have you read any of his work? If you enjoy the others in the shortlist, you might adore his very grim view of our near future.
Posted by -ink on February 19, 2010 at 6:07 PM · Report this
onion 13
I just finished Boneshaker and looked up this recommendation to bitch out Constant a little. BONESHAKER IS NOT VERY GOOD. Amateur!!! :(

I honestly didn't care how it ended and it took me several days just to read the last 20 pages.
I do not thank you for motivating me to read this book. What an annoyance. I even bought it. Do not buy this book. Priest does not deserve your money for this one. I haven't read her others; perhaps those are more worthy.
Character development was shallow. And the plot? gah! This is one of those sci fi/fantasy books that use the novel format simply as a vehicle for creating some geeky new world that geeks can geek out on. After about the third time she described what wearing the goddamm gas masks was like I wanted to throw the book across the room. All the description just seemed like a way to give geeks at conventions good instruction for costumes. And zombies. Oooh scary, ZOMBIES. Just an excuse for zombies. So those looking for an actual story with any kind of intrigue or suspense or interest can just go suck it.

This is the book:
Creepy new alternative Seattle.
You meet a series of characters.
The characters go do stuff, some zombies are killed.
There is never any doubt about how the story will turn out.
Posted by onion on April 27, 2011 at 9:33 AM · Report this

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