27 June 2011

Locus Awards 2011 - Winners and Nominees

Best Science Fiction Novel
- Blackout/All Clear, Connie Willis (Spectra)
- Surface Detail, Iain M. Banks (Orbit UK; Orbit US)
- Cryoburn, Lois McMaster Bujold (Baen)
- Zero History, William Gibson (Putnam; Viking UK)
- The Dervish House, Ian McDonald (Pyr; Gollancz)
Best Fantasy Novel
- Kraken, China MiƩville (Macmillan UK; Del Rey)
- Under Heaven, Guy Gavriel Kay (Penguin Canada; Roc)
- Who Fears Death, Nnedi Okorafor (DAW)
- The Fuller Memorandum, Charles Stross (Ace; Orbit UK)
- The Sorcerer's House, Gene Wolfe (Tor)

Best First Novel
- The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms, N.K. Jemisin (Orbit UK; Orbit US)

- The Loving Dead, Amelia Beamer (Night Shade)
- Shades of Milk and Honey, Mary Robinette Kowal (Tor)
- The Quantum Thief, Hannu Rajaniemi (Gollancz; Tor)
- How to Live Safely in a Science Fictional Universe, Charles Yu (Pantheon)
Best Young Adult Book
- Ship Breaker, Paolo Bacigalupi (Little, Brown)

- Mockingjay, Suzanne Collins (Scholastic)
- Enchanted Glass, Diana Wynne Jones (HarperCollins UK; Greenwillow)
- I Shall Wear Midnight, Terry Pratchett (Gollancz; HarperCollins)
- Behemoth, Scott Westerfeld (Simon Pulse; Simon & Schuster UK)
Best Novella- The Lifecycle of Software Objects, Ted Chiang (Subterranean)
- Bone and Jewel Creatures, Elizabeth Bear (Subterranean)
- "The Mystery Knight"', George R.R. Martin (Warriors)
- "Troika", Alastair Reynolds (Godlike Machines)
- "The Lady Who Plucked Red Flowers beneath the Queen's Window'", Rachel Swirsky (Subterranean Summer '10)
Best Novelette
- "The Truth Is a Cave in the Black Mountains", Neil Gaiman (Stories)

- "The Fool Jobs", Joe Abercrombie (Swords & Dark Magic)
- "The Mad Scientist's Daughter", Theodora Goss (Strange Horizons 1/18-1/25/10)
- "Plus or Minus", James Patrick Kelly (Asimov's 12/10)
- "Marya and the Pirate", Geoffrey A. Landis (Asimov's 1/10)
Best Short Story- "The Thing About Cassandra", Neil Gaiman (Songs of Love and Death)
- "Booth's Ghost", Karen Joy Fowler (What I Didn't See and Other Stories)
- "Names for Water", Kij Johnson (Asimov's 10-11/10)
- "Thirteen Ways of Looking at Space/Time", Catherynne M. Valente (Clarkesworld 8/10)
- "The Things", Peter Watts (Clarkesworld 1/10)
Best Magazine- Asimov's
- Analog
- F&SF
- Subterranean
- Tor.com
Best Book Publisher
- Tor
- Baen
- Night Shade Books
- Orbit
- Subterranean Press
Best Anthology- Warriors, George R.R. Martin & Gardner Dozois, eds. (Tor)
- Zombies vs. Unicorns, Holly Black & Justine Larbalestier, eds. (McElderry)
- The Beastly Bride, Ellen Datlow & Terri Windling, eds. (Viking)
- The Year's Best Science Fiction: Twenty-Seventh Annual Collection, Gardner Dozois, ed. (St. Martin's)
- Swords & Dark Magic, Jonathan Strahan & Lou Anders, eds. (HarperCollins)
Best Collection
- Fritz Leiber: Selected Stories, Fritz Leiber (Night Shade)

- Mirror Kingdoms, Peter S. Beagle (Subterranean)
- What I Didn't See and Other Stories, Karen Joy Fowler (Small Beer)
- The Best of Kim Stanley Robinson, Kim Stanley Robinson (Night Shade)
- The Collected Stories of Roger Zelazny: Volume Five: Nine Black Doves, Roger Zelazny (NESFA)
Best Editor
- Ellen Datlow

- Gardner Dozois
- Gordon Van Gelder
- David G. Hartwell
- Jonathan Strahan
Best Artist- Shaun Tan
- Bob Eggleton
- Donato Giancola
- John Picacio
- Michael Whelan
Best Non-Fiction Book
- Robert A. Heinlein: In Dialogue with His Century: Volume 1: 1907-1948: Learning Curve, William H. Patterson, Jr., (Tor)

- 80! Memories & Reflections on Ursula K. Le Guin, Karen Joy Fowler & Debbie Notkin, eds. (Aqueduct)
- Conversations with Octavia Butler, Conseula Francis (University Press of Mississippi)
- CM Kornbluth: The Life and Works of a Science Fiction Visionary, Mark Rich (McFarland)
- Bearings: Reviews 1997-2001, Gary K. Wolfe (Beccon)
Best Art Book
- Spectrum 17, Cathy & Arnie Fenner, eds. (Underwood)

- Bob Eggleton, Dragon's Domain (Impact)
- Donato Giancola, Middle-Earth: Visions of a Modern Myth (Underwood)
- Shaun Tan, The Bird King and Other Sketches (Windy Hollow)
- Charles Vess & Neil Gaiman, Instructions (Harper)

16 June 2011

New Books!

I received Hartwell and Kramer Years Best SF 16 in the post two days ago. Very good. I've barely had a chance to look at it yet, since I was a: in the middle of Dexter In The Dark by Jeff Lindsay and b: I was either out or doing something else all day, so I haven't had the opportunity to look. It'll be great though, I'm sure.

It is (was?) the last book I purchased from Amazon.com. As you may have heard, I'm a bookdepository.co.uk nerd now. Awesome, cheap, free postage.

I put in a new order today, actually. The books are:
  • Jeff Lindsay - Dexter is Delicious
  • Lou Anders - Fast Forward Vol. 1
  • Jim Butcher - Summer Knight
  • Irvine Welsh - The Acid House (I've regretted selling this book to Elizabeths since I did it.)
  • Irvine Welsh - Reheated Cabbage
  • David Hartwell and Katheryn Kramer - Years Best SF 13
  • Nick Gevers - Is Anybody Out There?
Total price including postage (which is free, so, erm...) $71.47. They have a summer reading promo on, so if YOU would like a 10% discount voucher, email me and I will send you one. I've already used mine, but if you get one from me and buy something with it, I get another. Which would be nice, I think.

And they have almost everything.

11 June 2011

On the subject of Iain M. Banks, Space Opera, and the Future of Money.

I've been reading a lot of Iain M Banks novels lately. By which I mean that I read all of the Iain M Banks novels published so far over the last four or so weeks. I love them. I've read Consider Phlebas, Player of Games and The Use of Weapons twice each, and listened to the audiobook of each of them as well, while driving into Bunbury. The more recent versions of the audiobook are better than the older ones, in my opinion.  Peter Kenny is a fantastic narrator, who has the good sense to not do the stupid atonal robot voice for spacecraft and drones.

I've also read the short story collection State of The Art a couple of times. It has a bunch of really fun short shorts, and a massively exciting novella to finish up. I've only read the other books once each so far, but I've restarted on Surface Detail, the 2010 released Culture novel that is the favourite so far.

I've read these books almost exclusively since discovering them. Why? Because the books are basically about a universe in which my political views won. It's my dream universe, where noone goes without, where noone has the right to prevent any action by any individual if it doesn't cause harm to others, where illness is nonexistant, where cross cultural cooperation is the NORMAL STATE OF THINGS!

Oh my, it's enticing. It's the novelisation of the problems involved with being the society that in my view would be as close to perfect as it is to come. Because problems will always arise, and morality is fraught with conundrums and contradictions.

But the thing that appeals to me most is the abolition of money. The first novel in the Culture series has a line that basically says that money is a symptom of poverty, or in other words that money is only necessary because of scarcity. I want to live in the post scarcity world, because that is when true human potential has a shot at being reached. Until then, the greedy will rule us all, and we will forever loose against greed if there are more people than resources.

The future of money is that there is no money. And oh how I long for a Space Opera future.

The End.

Now That I Have A Laptop...

Does that mean I'm writing a novel? HAHA. I kid.

Seriously though, I didn't realise how much use I would get out of this damn thing until I had it. Breakfast has become a whole new world of time wastage, since instead of reading my news feeds on the iPad, I can now type really quickly on my laptop while reading the news. So I find myself getting into forum arguments at breakfast. So much fun. Although you know what they say about arguing on the internet...

I haven't stopped reading tonnes of books, by the way. I just stopped writing about it for a while, because I was doing most of the writing at the library. These days, I get my books from BookDepository.co.uk instead. But now that I have a LAPTOP.

Did I mention that I bought myself a laptop? It's an Asus something or other with a 14" screen, which is quite small but suprisingly adequate. It also has a beautify keyboard for touch typing. I barely have to proof read or spell check anymore thanks to this god damn magnificent hunk of plastic crap.

The Future? It's awesome.