Monday, December 31, 2007

Sunday, December 30, 2007

alisonwonderland's list

when i signed up for this challenge, it seemed a very long time before January 1 would roll around - but now it's knocking at the door. i guess it's time to make a plan for my participation. i think i'll start with a list of twelve books - basically one a month - but note that i will be cross-listing many, if not all of them to other challenges.
    books by Orson Scott Card:

    • Enchantment

    • Ender's Shadow

    • Invasive Procedures

    • Pastwatch: The Redemption of Christopher Columbus

    books reviewed by Orson Scott Card:

    • Because of Winn Dixie by Kate DiCamillo

    • Flip by David Lubar

    • Girl Sleuth: Nancy Drew and the Women Who Created Her by Melanie Rehak

    • The Goose Girl by Shannon Hale

    • Interworld by Neil Gaiman

    • Princess Academy by Shannon Hale

    • Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson

    • "T" is for Trespass by Sue Grafton

Saturday, December 29, 2007

More OSC Recommended Books

This list is taken from a portion of OSC's column from 12/21/07. It originally appeared in the Rhinoceros Times of Greensboro, North Carolina.


Even people who never read books are flattered to think that you think they are readers. And kids who don't read books usually haven't been given the books they want to read!

Books for Kids

Age 3-5

Arnold Lobel's wonderful Frog and Toad books. Any of them. A set of them.

Age 6-8

It's disgusting but funny and kids love them. Dav Pilkey's Captain Underpants.

Girls 9-14

Shannon Hale, Goose Girl. A terrific realistic spin on a fantasy story.

Mette Ivie Harrison, Mira, Mirror or The Princess and the Hound. Nobody else thinks or writes like Harrison.

Boys and Girls 9-14

It's just a fact of life -- girls will read boys' books, but boys won't read girls' books. Live with it.

Margaret Peterson Haddix, Among the Hidden or any of the other "Among the ..." books in the Shadow Children Sequence. A future in which it's illegal to have more than two children -- so third children are hidden away until the state finds them and takes them.

Lloyd Alexander, absolutely anything. He simply doesn't know how to write a book that isn't exciting and rich with character.

Gail Carson Levine, the Fairy Haven series, starting with Fairy Dust and the Quest for the Egg. A classic-to-be.

Peter S. Beagle, The Last Unicorn. They've just come out with a new hardcover of this classic. A perfect gift -- for adults, too.

Jack Higgins with Justin Richards, Sure Fire. A thriller for kids, and it's a good one, way smarter and better than the Spy Kids movies.

Neal Shusterman, Unwind. The ultimate solution for unruly teenagers -- you just cut them up for spare parts. It's the law! The author of the brilliant Everlost with the ultimate paranoid thriller.


For Women

Jacqueline Winspear, any of the Maisie Dobbs novels. Set in England after World War I, brilliant historical novels as well as mysteries.

M.C. Beaton, any of the Haimish Macbeth novels, which have titles that begin with "The Death of ...". Get to know village life in the Highlands -- along with good solid mysteries and an ongoing series of romances.

Margaret Maron, her Deborah Knott mysteries. The newest is Hard Row, still in hardcover for a very nice gift.

Sharyn McCrumb, the author of magical Appalachian mysteries like If Ever I Return Pretty Peggy-O, comes to us with a NASCAR novel that women can love: Once Around the Track.

For Men or Women

Robert Crais: Anything at all, but especially The Two Minute Rule and The Watchman

Michael Connelly: Again, anything, but especially The Overlook

John Mortimer: Any Rumpole of the Bailey book

Science Fiction

Come on, who do you think is writing this list? A War of Gifts by Orson Scott Card is a perfect last-minute gift -- a thin hardcover with a compelling story that features the title character from Ender's Game. Or pick up the newly-released paperback of Empire, my novel about a civil war in present-day America and the need for us to return to civility in our public discussions. Or the hardcover Invasive Procedures, co-written with my brilliantly talented young friend Aaron Johnston, about a healer who'll make you "better" whether you're sick or not.


Lynn Flewelling: The Tamir Triad, starting with The Bone Doll's Twin and continuing with Hidden Warrior and The Oracle's Queen. Perhaps the deepest psychological novel I've ever read -- the fantasy makes the unconscious issues real. Gorgeous but dark.

Kate Elliott: The Crown of Stars series. Just pick up the first volume, King's Dragon. Not the book entitled Crown of Stars -- that's volume seven. You might worry that your fantasy-reader friend might not be glad to get volume one of seven -- but I promise you, they'll be grateful once they've read this extraordinarily powerful opening volume. But this, like Lynn Flewelling's, is not for the faint of heart.

David Gemmell: Anything. I recently discovered this British author and was dismayed to learn he died just a few years ago. I've read all of the beautiful and moving Rigante series, but so far I've picked up nothing of his that wasn't excellent and compulsively readable for the fantasy fan.


I spend my life reading history, and there's simply too much out there for me to try to recommend it all. But ... for last-minute shopping, pick up Tim Weiner's Legacy of Ashes, a brutally accurate history of the CIA using all the available documents and interviews with many of the participants. The miracle is that the United States still exists. Or pick up Stefan Rudnicki's compelling reading of it in the book on CD. You can't make a serious evaluation of what the CIA tells the President -- and us -- unless you understand just what this organization was and is. It will break your heart. THICK HARDCOVER


Ron Chernow's biography of Alexander Hamilton is a must-read for anyone who wants to understand the roots of the American Republic. It will also change your view of Thomas Jefferson and John Adams forever. Chernow is a gifted writer who makes the story clear and smooth to read, while still including all the facts and reasonable conclusions. Or pick up Scott Brick's sharply intelligent reading of it in the book on CD. THICK BOOK


There's only one celebrity memoir this year that's worth giving as a gift: Steve Martin's Born Standing Up: A Comic's Life. It's a marvelous yet brief autobiography and a compendium of his best bits during the years that he erupted into a dominant position in American comedy. THIN HARDCOVER

Friday, December 28, 2007

Mythopoeic Award Challenge

Foxy writer is hosting the Mythopoeic Award Challenge in 2008. It lasts all twelve months. The goal is to read seven books that won the Mythopoeic Award. You can find the list of award winners here. And a list of finalists here.

Here are the rules:

  1. Choose seven books from the list of Mythopoeic Award Winners (or nominees, here for fantasy or here for scholarship).
  2. Anything on the list is fair game, fiction or non-fiction.
  3. Post a link to your list in the comments of this post (if you don’t have a website, post your list in the comments.)
  4. Somewhere in your post, link back to this challenge post. (permalink)
  5. Read the books between January 1st, 2008 and December 31st, 2008.
  6. You may start anytime in 2008, but you must finish by the end of December 31st, 2008.
  7. You may combine this challenge with other challenges.
I've done a quick scan of the award winners and nominees and noticed that some qualify for the Cardathon. 3 by Orson Scott Card himself. You may want to do a more intense search/scan yourself to see if I've missed any...but this is what I see so far...

The Crystal Cave by Mary Stewart
Trader by Charles de Lint
Someplace to Be Flying by Charles de Lint
Forests of the Heart by Charles de Lint
Moonheart by Charles de Lint
Stardust by Neil Gaiman
American Gods by Neil Gaiman
Coraline by Neil Gaiman
Anansi Boys by Neil Gaiman
Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman
The Pinhoe Egg by Diana Wynne Jones
Fire and Hemlock by Diana Wynne Jones
Castle in the Air by Diana Wynne Jones
The Crown of Dalemark by Diana Wynne Jones
Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine
The Goose Girl by Shannon Hale
The Circle of Magic series by Tamora Pierce
Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone by J.K. Rowling
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J.K. Rowling

Mythopoeic Fantasy Award & Nominees

  • 1971
    • * The Crystal Cave by Mary Stewart
    • The Marvellous Misadventures of Sebastian by Lloyd Alexander
    • Deryni Rising by Katherine Kurtz
    • Nine Princes in Amber by Roger Zelazny
  • 1972
    • * Red Moon and Black Mountain by Joy Chant
    • Grendel by John Gardner
    • The Tsaddik of the Seven Wonders by Isidore Haiblum
    • The Tombs of Atuan by Ursula K. Le Guin
    • The Corum Trilogy by Michael Moorcock
    • The Light Maze by Joan North
    • The Forest of Forever by Thomas Burnett Swann
    • The Children of Llyr by Evangeline Walton
  • 1973
    • * The Song of Rhiannon by Evangeline Walton
    • Dancer from Atlantis by Poul Anderson
    • Deryni Checkmate by Katherine Kurtz
    • The Farthest Shore by Ursula K. Le Guin
    • Green Phoenix by Thomas Burnett Swann
    • The Guns of Avalon by Roger Zelazny
  • 1974
    • * The Hollow Hills by Mary Stewart
    • Hrolf Kraki's Saga by Poul Anderson
    • The Dark Is Rising by Susan Cooper
    • Excalibur by Sanders Anne Laubenthal
    • High Deryni by Katherine Kurtz
  • 1975
    • * A Midsummer Tempest by Poul Anderson
    • Watership Down by Richard Adams
    • The Forgotten Beasts of Eld by Patricia A. McKillip
    • Merlin's Ring by H. Warner Munn
    • How Are the Mighty Fallen by Thomas Burnett Swann
    • Prince of Annwn by Evangeline Walton
  • 1976-1980: awards discontinued
  • 1981
    • * Unfinished Tales by J.R.R. Tolkien
    • The Grey Mane of Morning by Joy Chant
    • The Wounded Land by Stephen R. Donaldson
    • The Beginning Place by Ursula K. Le Guin
    • Lion of Ireland by Morgan Llywelyn
  • 1982
    • * Little, Big by John Crowley
    • Delusion's Master by Tanith Lee
    • The Woman Who Loved the Moon by Elizabeth A. Lynn
    • The Many-colored Land by Julian May
    • The Sable Moon by Nancy Springer
    • Claw of the Conciliator by Gene Wolfe
  • 1983
    • * The Firelings by Carol Kendall
    • The Mists of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley
    • The One Tree by Stephen R. Donaldson
    • Queen of Sorcery by David Eddings
    • God Stalk by P.C. Hodgell
    • The Blue Sword by Robin McKinley
    • The Door in the Hedge by Robin McKinley
    • Lady of Light by Diana L. Paxson
    • The Darkangel by Meredith Ann Pierce
  • 1984
    • * When Voiha Wakes by Joy Chant
    • other nominees not available
  • 1985
    • * Cards of Grief by Jane Yolen
    • Moonheart by Charles de Lint
    • The Damiano Trilogy by R.A. McAvoy
    • The Hero and the Crown by Robin McKinley
    • The Book of Lost Tales by J.R.R. Tolkien
  • 1986
    • * Bridge of Birds by Barry Hughart
    • Dragonsbane by Barbara Hambly
    • Dark of the Moon by P.C. Hodgell
    • Fire and Hemlock by Diana Wynne Jones
    • Always Coming Home by Ursula K. Le Guin
    • The Wandering Unicorn by Manuel Mujica Lainez
  • 1987
    • * The Folk of the Air by Peter S. Beagle
    • The Fionavar Tapestry by Guy Gavriel Kay
    • Tales from the Flat Earth by Tanith Lee
    • Merlin's Booke by Jane Yolen
  • 1988
    • * Seventh Son by Orson Scott Card
    • War for the Oaks by Emma Bull
    • The Falling Woman by Pat Murphy
    • Lincoln's Dreams by Connie Willis
  • 1989
    • * Unicorn Mountain by Michael Bishop
    • The Last Coin by James P. Blaylock
    • Red Prophet by Orson Scott Card
    • The Nightingale by Kara Dalkey
    • The White Raven by Diana L. Paxson
    • Walkabout Woman by Michaela Roessner
  • 1990
    • * The Stress of Her Regard by Tim Powers
    • Prentice Alvin by Orson Scott Card
    • The Changeling Sea by Patricia A. McKillip
    • The City, Not Long After by Pat Murphy
    • Fool on the Hill by Matt Ruff
  • 1991
    • * Thomas the Rhymer by Ellen Kushner
    • Tigana by Guy Gavriel Kay
    • Tehanu by Ursula K. Le Guin
    • Only Begotten Daughter by James Morrow
    • The Books of Great Alta by Jane Yolen
  • 1992
    • * A Woman of the Iron People by Eleanor Arnason
    • Tam Lin by Pamela Dean
    • Moonwise by Greer Ilene Gilman
    • The Sorceress and the Cygnet by Patricia A. McKillip
    • Beauty by Sheri S. Tepper
    • * Haroun and the Sea of Stories by Salman Rushdie
    • Jeremy Thatcher, Dragon Hatcher by Bruce Coville
    • Castle in the Air by Diana Wynne Jones
    • Elsewhere by Will Shetterly
    • Song of the Gargoyle by Zilpha Keatley Snyder
  • 1993
    • * Briar Rose by Jane Yolen
    • The Paper Grail by James P. Blaylock
    • Last Call by Tim Powers
    • The Grail of Hearts by Susan Shwartz
    • Doomsday Book by Connie Willis
    • * Knight's Wyrd by Debra Doyle and James D. Macdonald
    • The Ancient One by T.A. Barron
    • Jennifer Murdley's Toad by Bruce Coville
    • Hobkin by Peni R. Griffin
    • Fish Soup by Ursula K. Le Guin
  • 1994
    • * The Porcelain Dove by Delia Sherman
    • The Innkeeper's Song by Peter S. Beagle
    • The Cygnet and the Firebird by Patricia A. McKillip
    • Deerskin by Robin McKinley
    • * The Kingdom of Kevin Malone by Suzy McKee Charnas
    • The Mystery of the Cupboard by Lynne Reid Banks
    • The Giver by Lois Lowry
    • Nevernever by Will Shetterly
    • Calling on Dragons by Patricia C. Wrede
  • 1995
    • * Something Rich and Strange by Patricia A. McKillip
    • The Dubious Hills by Pamela Dean
    • The Hollowing by Robert Holdstock
    • Temporary Agency by Rachel Pollack
    • * Owl in Love by Patrice Kindl
    • The Princess and the Lord of Night by Emma Bull
    • Switching Well by Peni R. Griffin
    • A Knot in the Grain and Other Stories by Robin McKinley
    • Good Griselle by Jane Yolen
  • 1996
    • * Waking the Moon by Elizabeth Hand
    • Brittle Innings by Michael Bishop
    • All the Bells on Earth by James P. Blaylock
    • The Book of Atrix Wolfe by Patricia A. McKillip
    • The Dragon Path by Kenneth Morris
    • * The Crown of Dalemark by Diana Wynne Jones
    • The Boggart by Susan Cooper
    • Falcon's Egg by Luli Gray
    • Wren's War by Sherwood Smith
    • The Mennyms by Sylvia Waugh
  • 1997 (Adult and Children's Awards combined)
    • * The Wood Wife by Terri Windling
    • One for the Morning Glory by John Barnes
    • Winter Rose by Patricia A. McKillip
    • Fair Peril by Nancy Springer
    • The Book of the Long Sun by Gene Wolfe
  • 1998
    • * Young Merlin trilogy (consisting of Passager, Hobby and Merlin) by Jane Yolen
    • The Boggart and the Monster by Susan Cooper
    • A Dark Horn Blowing by Dahlov Ipcar
    • Rose Daughter by Robin McKinley
  • 1999
    • * Stardust by Neil Gaiman and Charles Vess
    • Someplace to be Flying by Charles de Lint
    • The History of our World Beyond the Wave by R.E. Klein
    • Song for the Basilisk by Patricia A. McKillip
    • The High House by James Stoddard
    • * Dark Lord of Derkholm by Diane Wynne Jones
    • Heavenward Path by Kara Dalkey
    • Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine
    • The Squire's Tale by Gerald Morris
    • Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone by J.K. Rowling
  • 2000
    • * Tamsin by Peter S. Beagle
    • Elementals by A.S. Byatt
    • Dark Cities Underground by Lisa Goldstein
    • The Wild Swans by Peg Kerr
    • The Book of Knights by Yves Meynard
    • * The Folk Keeper by Franny Billingsley
    • Skellig by David Almond
    • The Circle of Magic series by Tamora Pierce
    • Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J.K. Rowling
    • Kingdom series by Cynthia Voigt
  • 2001
    • * The Innamorati by Midori Snyder
    • ravenShadow by Win Blevins
    • Forests of the Heart by Charles de Lint
    • The Sarantine Mosaic (Sailing to Sarantium and Lord of Emperors) by Guy Gavriel Kay
    • * Aria of the Sea by Dia Calhoun
    • Night Flying by Rita Murphy
    • Beast by Donna Jo Napoli
    • Growing Wings by Laurel Winter
    • Boots and the Seven Leaguers by Jane Yolen
  • 2002
    • * The Curse of Chalion by Lois McMaster Bujold
    • American Gods by Neil Gaiman
    • Ill Met by Moonlight by Sarah A. Hoyt
    • The Other Wind by Ursula K. Le Guin
    • Declare by Tim Powers
    • * The Ropemaker by Peter Dickinson
    • The Wizard's Dilemma by Diane Duane
    • Island of the Aunts by Eva Ibbotson
    • The Two Princesses of Bamarre by Gail Carson Levine
  • 2003
  • 2004
    • * Sunshine by Robin McKinley
    • Paladin of Souls by Lois McMaster Bujold
    • Fudoki by Kij Johnson
    • Changing Planes by Ursula K. Le Guin
    • In the Forests of Serre by Patricia A. McKillip
    • * The Hollow Kingdom by Clare B. Dunkle
    • The Tale of Despereaux by Kate DiCamillo
    • Inkheart by Cornelia Funke
    • The Goose Girl by Shannon Hale
    • The Wee Free Men by Terry Pratchett

  • 2005
    • * Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell by Susanna Clarke
    • The Anvil of the World by Kage Baker
    • Mortal Love by Elizabeth Hand
    • Alphabet of Thorn by Patricia A. McKillip
    • The Wizard Knight, consisting of The Knight and The Wizard, by Gene Wolfe

    • * A Hat Full of Sky by Terry Pratchett
    • Arthur Trilogy, consisting of The Seeing Stone, At the Crossing Places, and King of the Middle March, by Kevin Crossley-Holland
    • Sea of Trolls by Nancy Farmer
    • Trilogy consisting of Wise Child, Juniper, and Colman by Monica Furlong
    • The Abhorsen Trilogy, consisting of Sabriel, Lirael: Daughter of the Clayr, and Abhorsen, by Garth Nix
  • 2006
    • * Anansi Boys by Neil Gaiman
    • The Penelopiad by Margaret Atwood
    • The Hallowed Hunt by Lois McMaster Bujold
    • Metallic Love by Tanith Lee
    • The Strange Adventures of Rangergirl by Tim Pratt

    • * The Bartimaeus Trilogy, consisting of The Amulet of Samarkand, The Golem's Eye, and Ptolemy's Gate, by Jonathan Stroud
    • Valiant by Holly Black
    • Wizards at War by Diane Duane
    • By These Ten Bones by Clare B. Dunkle
  • 2007

    • * Patricia A. McKillip, Solstice Wood (Ace Books)
    • Peter S. Beagle, The Line Between (Tachyon Publications)
    • Susanna Clarke, The Ladies of Grace Adieu (Bloomsbury USA)
    • Keith Donohue, The Stolen Child (Nan A. Talese)
    • Susan Palwick, The Necessary Beggar (Tor)
    • Tim Powers, Three Days to Never (William Morrow)

    • * Catherine Fisher, Corbenic (Greenwillow)
    • Nina Kiriki Hoffman, Spirits That Walk in Shadow (Viking)
    • Diana Wynne Jones, The Pinhoe Egg (Greenwillow)
    • Martine Leavitt, Keturah and Lord Death (Front Street)
    • Terry Pratchett, Wintersmith (HarperTeen)

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Sci-Fi Experience

Carl from Stainless Steel Droppings is hosting an experience this January and February. He clearly points out that it is not a challenge per se, more of an experience. There are no required number of books. The goal is to have fun and to read books. For those that are intimidated perhaps by reading challenges and feeling that there is a "have" or "must" about them--it's a good distinction. I read his description--although Carl might disagree--and think of it as taking a class without receiving a grade. For the record, I'm still planning on counting this one as a "challenge" in my reckoning. Because I belong to a group that keeps track of how many challenges per year you participate in and complete. It's all fun. I don't take the numbers too seriously, after all, but I like the challenge of being challenged. Read all about the sci-fi experience here. Read the sci-fi experience reviews here.

I plan on reading some Orson Scott Card. An obvious choice for me since not only do I love him, but the Cardathon challenge officially begins January 1rst. I may (may being the key word) read C.S. Lewis' sci-fi trilogy. I'd like to perhaps read some Asimov as well. But I may be too busy to squeeze that in. If you have suggestions, ideas for books--titles and/or authors--please suggest away. My familiarity with the genre really goes no further than OSC and a few H.G. Wells and Ray Bradbury's Martian Chronicles.

The experience goes from January 1 to February 29th.