Friday, January 3, 2014

SFF Lit Round Up for 2013

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I haven't gotten to read as much SFF Lit as I would like this year. Fortunately my Utopian Sci-Fi class in the spring introduced me to a few really strong books, and I knew where to look for authors who had stood the test before.

1. Shattered Pillars by Elizabeth Bear

I didn't think it could get much better than Range of Ghosts, but Shattered Pillars brought new depth to characters and more magic to the kingdoms of the Eternal Sky. I'm looking forward to the third book this year!

2. Necessary Evil by Ian Tregellis

Tregellis has still got his way with words, and this time around I even got to like detective Raybould Marsh, both as his scarred back-from-the-future self and idealistic younger self. And Gretl-a madwoman who can change time because of man-made powers? A book to ponder, for sure (despite the icky man-with-a-gun cover).

3. Woman on the Edge of Time by Marge Piercy

Mattapoisett is my favorite utopia to date, a world where all babies are mixed-race and born from machines, and you can be pillow-friends with as many people as you want. Plus, the heartbreaking perspective of a disenfranchised poor Latina woman from the 1960s puts some perspective on exactly why this utopia is so great.

4. The Best of All Possible Worlds by Karen Lord

Ok, it's not the most original idea. But the in-depth presentation of how so many different groups deal with different forms and levels of empathic and telepathic abilities was fascinating to me, and felt both creative and applicable to our own lives.

5. The Year of the Flood by Margaret Atwood

The God's Gardeners are quite a utopian creation in the midst of a frighteningly realistic dystopia. Atwood's imagination creates dreams that will haunt our futures.

6. MadAddam by Margaret Atwood

Stories are the future. Well said.

Till next year!

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