Science Fiction Fridays: Top twelve of 2012 Part 2 of 3

Part II in the countdown of the best genre fiction of the year. Part I can be found here, and don’t forget to leave your favorites in the comments!

the croningThe Croning by Laird Barron

A tiny candelight held up to the moments in life where reality turns to nightmarish horror. Barron explores one man’s flickers of insight into the sublime Lovecraftian terrors that are ever-present, but rarely seen. A nearly flawless literary horror novel that will probably be considered a classic in the years to come.

Animal Man by Jeff Lemireanimal man lemire

Buddy Baker has to balance being Animal Man, a B-list superhero with strange supernatural powers, with also being a good husband and father. Lemire’s take on the beloved Animal Man lives up to the legacy created by the legendary Grant Morrison. This series is so engrossing because it focuses on Buddy’s family and their powerful bond as much as the supernatural horrors in which Buddy finds himself entangled.

cinder marissa meyerCinder by Marissa Meyer

In a world where her kind is reviled, Cinder is a half-machine girl in turmoil with her step-family who becomes embroiled in a dangerous conspiracy. Filled to the brim with robots, cyborgs, designer plagues and lunar colonists evolved into something more than human. Cinder is a great character with just the right amount of vulnerability and attitude. If you loved The Hunger Games, but you’re weary of a copycat, Cinder is gonna hit your sweet spot.

When We Were Executioners by J.M. McDermottwhen we were executioners

In the slums of Dogsland, two demon-stained lovers face bigotry, betryal and the servants of the goddess Erin who will stop at nothing to cleanse the world of their presence. A fantasy ripe with descriptions of the moral and physical decay of a city as well as the tragedy of the two protagonist. This a series to savor if you love lyrical writing, characters with depth and fantasy that has a dark, sharp edge. Second in a series.

3 thoughts on “Science Fiction Fridays: Top twelve of 2012 Part 2 of 3”

  1. Somewhat misleading to have so much fantasy under Science Fiction Friday. It would be helpful to keep a short fence up between Sci-fan and Sci-fi.

  2. I concur with the above comment. I consider the the two entirely different. I’m a Scy Fy fan but not a fantasy fan.

  3. Thanks for your comments, Clive and David!

    Though the column is entitled “Science Fiction Fridays”, I use that in the classic library sense of encomossing the genres of fantasy, science fiction and even some horror. I try not to get too tied down with labels because the line between fantasy and science fiction is a big, blurry mess. For example, my favorite kind of stories are time travel ones. Some call time travel science fiction, while some insist it is fantasy.

    I try to highlight things from across the genres though I personally read more science fiction than fantasy. I promise tomorrow’s finale of this year’s best will feature mostly science fiction, though I will say I read a lot more great science fiction last year than I did this year. I found the horror and fantasy books of this year to be particularly strong and this list reflects that trend.

    Thanks for bringing this up because I think it’s always an interesting and worthwhile conversation to have.

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