I’ve been hanging out for the announcement of the Locus Award nominees.  This Award has always been an excellent snapshot of the state of (mostly) American SF&F and because my tastes have clearly drifted away from core genre, I’m curious to see how I react to the 20 novels listed below (or at least the 16 I haven’t as yet read).  I also note that the finalists in the Science Fiction Novel category could have easily have formed the Hugo ballot sans the very good Goblin Empire and the influence of the Sad Puppies.

If I’m a little sad it’s that Nina Allan’s magnificent début novel, The Race, didn’t feature.  Also surprising is the non-appearance of Nnedi Okorafor’s Lagoon, though this might have something to do with the novel not having been published in the US.  Both these books, I should note, were on Locus’ Recommended Reading List.

Anyway here are the novel categories with links to the handful of books I’ve read.  (By the time I get through all these – and my existing backlog – they’ll be announcing the nominees of the Man Booker.  Have I bitten off more than I can chew?  Yessirreeeeeeee!!!!)


  • The Peripheral, William Gibson (Putnam; Viking UK)
  • Ancillary Sword, Ann Leckie (Orbit US; Orbit UK) – read but not reviewed
  • The Three-Body Problem, Cixin Liu (Tor) – read but not reviewed
  • Lock In, John Scalzi (Tor; Gollancz)
  • Annihilation/Authority/Acceptance, Jeff VanderMeer (FSG Originals; Fourth Estate; HarperCollins Canada) – have not read the other two books in the trilogy


  • The Goblin Emperor, Katherine Addison (Tor) – read but not reviewed
  • Steles of the Sky, Elizabeth Bear (Tor)
  • City of Stairs, Robert Jackson Bennett (Broadway; Jo Fletcher)
  • The Magician’s Land, Lev Grossman (Viking; Arrow 2015)
  • The Mirror Empire, Kameron Hurley (Angry Robot US)


  • Half a King, Joe Abercrombie (Del Rey; Voyager UK)
  • The Doubt Factory, Paolo Bacigalupi (Little, Brown)
  • Waistcoats & Weaponry, Gail Carriger (Little, Brown; Atom)
  • Empress of the Sun, Ian McDonald (Jo Fletcher; Pyr)
  • Clariel, Garth Nix (Harper; Hot Key; Allen & Unwin)


  • Elysium, Jennifer Marie Brissett (Aqueduct)
  • A Darkling Sea, James L. Cambias (Tor)
  • The Clockwork Dagger, Beth Cato (Harper Voyager)
  • The Memory Garden, Mary Rickert (Sourcebooks Landmark)
  • The Emperor’s Blades, Brian Staveley (Tor; Tor UK)