Thursday, May 9, 2013

YA Locus Finalists

Wow! What a wealth of terrific YA SF in 2012.

Todd Mason regularly posts award winners and nomination lists to Fiction_L. I'm on the road right now so I may have missed the Locus Poll Finalists so I'm grateful for Todd's post.

Young Adult Book

I read all of these last year except for Valente's. Unfortunately I didn't write reviews for everything I read last year. 

I am a big fan of Paolo Bacigalupi and had teens who were so anxious to read it I passed it on to them right away. I remember feeling wet and miserable while reading this apocalyptic novel and liking the aspect of a genetically engineered character and the feelings of desperation in the protagonists. While it has been called a sequel to Ship Breaker it has different protagonists and stands on its own. 

Terry Pratchett may be the most loved SF author (as in speculative fiction, encompassing science fiction, fantasy, and horror). Dodger as on the Artful Dodger of Oliver Twist fame was thoroughly enjoyable and added some interesting twists. Wonderful human and engaging characters.

Railsea, China MiĆ©ville 
Mieville is brilliant at conjuring up strange and intricate worlds. I could see the endless rails, the wrecks, and the variety of horrific beasties. There is so much here to like but I never really felt like I knew the characters. I never connected with them.

Pirate Cinema, Cory Doctorow 
I can't say that Doctorow is my favorite author or that I love his characters. I love his books because he speaks up for justice, acceptance of differences, and appreciation of art no matter the medium.  I love what his characters do, grabbing life by the horns and fighting for what is right. I was really surprised by how much Trent/Cecil's scavenging and life at the ???? (shoot, left the book in the car) zero something so closely resembled my life in Gunnison in the early 1970s. I'm going to have to write something else up about that but we had very much the same lifestyle. Most of our food came out of the dumpsters behind Safeway supplemented from hundred pound bags of onions from a truck that crashed on Monarch pass, pizza misorders, and the egg man. Anyway, i was so surprised that a future seventeen year old was as compelled by his art in a near future as I was by my art in the distant past at age 17 to do what it takes. The things Doctorow says about copyright, creativity, and corporate power are things that everyone should read. 

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