My Top 10 SFF novels of 2008


As was the case last year, I'll include this Top 10 and the ten runners-up when I post my year-end awards next week.

TOP 10 SFF BOOKS OF 2008

1- Toll the Hounds by Steven Erikson (Bantam Press/Tor Books)
2- The Secret History of Moscow by Ekaterina Sedia (Prime Books)
3- Return of the Crimson Guard by Ian Cameron Esslemont (PS Publishing/Bantam Press)
4- MultiReal by David Louis Edelman (Pyr)
5- Last Argument of Kings by Joe Abercrombie (Gollancz/Pyr)
6- Bloodheir by Brian Ruckley (Orbit)
7- Inside Straight edited by George R. R. Martin (Tor Books)
8- The Ten Thousand by Paul Kearney (Solaris)
9- The Shadow Year by Jeffrey Ford (William Morrow and co.)
10- The Edge of Reason by Melinda Snodgrass (Tor Books)

As always, feel free to disagree!:p But these are my picks!

23 commentaires:

Larry said...

Umm...Sedia's book came out in 2007 ;)

Patrick said...

Yeah, but too late in the year for anyone to really know about it.:-) That's why I've included it on this year's list.

Maurice said...

Are most of those really better than Neuropath? If yes, I have to save up and buy some more. Seriously, nothing prepared me for that book, not even all the times you were writing how disturbing it was!

Roland said...

It's a sad year if its very best novel is "Toll the Hounds"...

Larry said...

I knew about it back in August 2007 and even a November 1, 2007 release isn't much closer to the end of the year as was Esslemont's novel, for example.

Then again, it's always fun to rag on you ;)

Joe Abercrombie said...

Pat, your top four are a mess.

Around number five you start to sort yourself out, though...

Adam Whitehead said...

No love for The Steel Remains, Pat?

Patrick said...

Maurice: NEUROPATH isn't SFF, otherwise it would have been at the top of the list.

Larry: Esslemont's RotCG came out in the spring...

Roland: You are right. 2008 was a weaker year than 2007 and 2006 were.

Joe: Blow our minds, and BEST SERVED COLD could top my list in 2009!

Adam: THE STEEL REMAINS is a runner-up.

Adam Whitehead said...

The gizmo in Neuropath that allows the villain to do the things he does is pure SF at this point, and IIRC the book is set in the near future. I'd classify it as SF in a heartbeat.

Good point on RotCG, as its original publishing was in May, even if the mass-market didn't follow until August.

Larry said...

Doesn't matter, as wide-release wasn't until later than that in certain parts of the globe ;) Sedia's work was widely-known in certain circles months before its late October/early November 2007 release. Just sayin' ;)

Anonymous said...

IMHO, of course, but Edge of Reason over The Steel Remains?? Don't think so.

Anonymous said...

@Roland...you sir are crazy if it's not at the top of a fantasy list. I'm sure you would have rather seen Confessor, even if it was published in 2007...noob

Roland said...

Do shoot yourself sir. I happen to be dedicated fan of the Malazan series. Which doesn't make the last book any less dull, labored and protracted. Not to mention the "Let's unnecessarily kill a major character progress the plot" syndrome that appeared around Book 6 and has been present ever since.

Then again, I haven't read too much of 2008's fantasy so I don't know whether TtH was the best that came out. Like I said, if that's the case, then too bad.

As for Goodkind, I dropped the SoT series around "Pillars of Creation" so I'm sure I don't know what you mean ;p

Anonymous said...

Normally I read a fantasy novel in three to six days. Toll the Hounds took me eight weeks to read.

It is quite simply, shite. It has no structure. The story strands are disjointed and hapharzardly plunked into spots where they do very little for the overall construction of the novel. There is too much intricacy (sp?) and not enough humanity to the characters (I know a lot aren't human but we should be able to empathise with the motivations of aliens). The characters get stacked up like dominos merely to be knocked over for dramatic effect.

In short it is one of the worst novels I've read and I've read a Terry Goodkind!

Langan, Australia

Roland said...

Erm, sorry, I simply *have* to ask - you DO know it's the eighth part in a series, right?

Anonymous said...

I thought it was the seventh.

Langan, Australia

Anonymous said...

Reaper's Gale is seventh. Toll the Hounds is eighth.

Dream Girlzzz said...

Yeah, 2008 wasn't a particularly great years for fantasy and science fiction. It was shaping up to be incredible, but when GRRM, Lynch, Rothfuss, and Bakker got pushed back to 2009, you knew we were in trouble.

But I guess that this will make 2009 even better for us!!!

Maurice said...

I would classify it as SciFi, if only so that I could sleep more easily at night

Larry said...

2008 was a very good year for anthologies, short story collections, and YA novels, at least from what I can tell. Perhaps it is a weak year mostly in the sense of epic fantasy series?

myshkin said...

I don't think it was a bad year for fantasy at all. In fact, I think it was a pretty damn good year. Some 2008 titles I enjoyed:

Thunderer by Felix Gilman
The Hero of Ages by Brandon Sanderson
An Autumn War by Daniel Abraham
Empire in Black and Gold by Adrian Tchaikovsky
The Painted Man by Peter V. Brett
The Born Queen by Greg Keyes
The Ten Thousand by Paul Kearney
Last Argument of Kings by Joe Abercrombie
Blood of the Elves by Andrzej Sapkowski
Iron Angel by Alan Campbell
The Night Angel Trilogy by Brent Weeks
The Red Wolf Conspiracy by Robert V.S. Redick
Bloodheir by Brian Ruckley

David S. said...

Hrm... Pat, I think you could improve that list if you could manage to read Neal Stephenson's Anathem by the end of the year. A quick warning - some of the passages in the book are mind-benders. IMHO Stephenson is the most brilliant SF author currently publishing, no disrespect to Morgan, Scalzi, and McDevitt.

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