Back in July I did a list of my favourite books of the year so far, and as it’s now October time for another update.
For the months July through September, I read a total of twenty eight books (I’m slowing down), some of which were really, really rather short. I also started quite a few others that I didn’t finish, and finished several that I started earlier in 2013. Nothing about this is an exact science.
So, in the order I preferred them when I wrote the list ten minutes ago (and, of course, it may be subject to change), here’s my top thirteen books for 2013 so far, with new entries shown in bold:-
Abarat: Absolute Midnight – Clive Barker (Harper Voyager)
Stardust: The Ruby Castle Stories – Nina Allan (PS Publishing)
A Natural History of Ghosts – Roger Clarke (Particular Books)
Path of Needles – Alison Littlewood (Jo Fletcher Books)
Hauntings – Edited by Ellen Datlow (Tachyon)
Microcosmos – Nina Allan (NewCon Press)
Whitstable – Stephen Volk (Spectral Press)
Shadows – Ilsa J. Bick (Quercus)
It Sustains – Mark Morris (Earthling Publications)
The Late Great Creature – Brock Bower (Overlook Duckworth)
The White Devil – Justin Evans (Phoenix)
Mayhem – Sarah Pinborough (Jo Fletcher Books)
The Bones of You – Gary McMahon (Earthling Publications)
Not much change at the top, and only three new entries.
Eight novels, one novella, two collections, one anthology and one non-fiction. Earthling Publications and Jo Fletcher Books are the only publishers to appear twice on the list and Nina Allan is the only individual.
Although they’re included in my total of ninety one books read so far this year, I didn’t take into consideration books that I’ve read previously, which is why Clive Barker’s Weaveworld isn’t on the list, and I’ve also excluded anything published by TTA Press, so no Spin by Nina Allan.
I’ve also haven’t counted any of the books that I read in connection with my role as a judge for British Fantasy Award for Best Newcomer, as I don’t want anyone reading this blog as a way to second guess how the judging process went, though I may include those titles later in the year when the Award has been done and dusted, and the winner made public.
And, of course, nearly all of these titles were first published in 2012, if not earlier, so it is a ‘best of Pete’s reading’ rather than ‘best of the year’.
Check back in three months or so to see which of these titles remain.