Here (in no particular order) are some of the things (this is a very incomplete list and doubtless I’ll want to add something as soon as I post it) that I read and enjoyed in 2018, and commend to you both for reading, and for considering for awards season:
- Aliette du Bodard, In The Vanishers’ Palace. Wonderful worldbuilding of a post-colonial world in disarray and the people trying to help; lyrical writing; and a f/f romance between a dragon and a scholar.
- T Kingfisher, Swordheart. Halla inherits a sword; which turns out to have a swordman magically trapped inside it. Shenanigans ensue. Such a fun read.
- T Kingfisher, The Wonder Engine. Second part of the Clocktaur War duology, and just as good as the first. Clockwork, a grumpy forger, and a disgraced paladin. (Set in the same world as Swordheart.)
- Juliet E McKenna, The Green Man’s Heir. Modern rural (as opposed to urban) fantasy/detective story.
- Stephen Cox, Our Child Of The Stars. Thoughtful, warm story about a family, their unusual child, and their efforts to protect him.
- Becky Chambers, Record of a Spaceborn Few. Yay more Becky Chambers. Notionally part of the Wayfarers series, but standalone. It’s more like four stories woven together. It’s gentle, and thoughtful, and I loved it.
- Yoon Ha Lee, Revenant Gun. Cracking finish to the Machineries of Empire series.
- Aliette du Bodard, The Tea Master and the Detective. Space opera Sherlock Holmes, with a mindship and a scholar, set in the Xuya universe.
- Katherine Fabian and Iona Datt Sharma, Sing For The Coming Of The Longest Night. Polyamory, queerness, and magic, and a mystery revolving around the solstice. Lovely. Also it’s set in London which is always a winner for me.
- Martha Wells, Exit Strategy. Fourth and final instalment of The Murderbot Diaries, though I admit I am hoping for more Murderbot after this. Murderbot is awesome.
- Zen Cho, If At First You Don’t Succeed, Try, Try Again. More dragons. Or, rather, an imugi that wants to be a dragon.
- T Kingfisher, “The Rose MacGregor Drinking And Admiration Society”. This made me laugh a lot.
- Isabel Yap, “Asphalt, River, Mother, Child”. Beautifully written and deeply affecting story set in the Philippines in the context of the ‘war on drugs’.
- Premee Mohamed “More Tomorrow”. When field trips go wrong…
- Alix E Harrow, “A Witch’s Guide To Escape: A Practical Compendium Of Portal Fantasies”. A librarian witch and a whole lot of portal fantasies; what’s not to like?
(Note to self: do a better job of tracking short story reading this year. I am pretty sure I have missed stuff that I loved when I read it.)
I can also recommend Liz Bourke’s Tor.com review column Sleeps With Monsters is great for adding to one’s TBR stack, should one feel the need to do that. (This year I really am going to read everything on the pile. Yes.)