The selections for the 2016 Reading List, an annual list for adult readers of the best in eight different fiction genres, were announced January 9 at the American Library Association’s Midwinter Meeting in Boston.
The eight genres covered by the list are adrenaline, fantasy, historical fiction, horror, mystery, romance, science fiction and women’s fiction. The winners are chosen by the Reading List Council of twelve expert readers’ advisory and collection development librarians.
Their choices in the fantasy, horror, and science fiction categories are —
Winner: Uprooted by Naomi Novik. Del Rey, an imprint of Ballantine Books.
In this enchanted old-world fable, villagers threatened by a blighted magical wood allow the resident wizard to take one daughter into servitude for 10 years. When he chooses klutzy Agnieszka, she faces an unexpected future and confronts the dangers of a wider political world and the roots of magical corruption.
- The Aeronaut’s Windlass: The Cinder Spires by Jim Butcher. Roc, an imprint of Penguin Random House.
- A Darker Shade of Magic by V. E. Schwab. Tor Books, an imprint of Macmillan Publishers.
- The Fifth Season: The Broken Earth: Book One by N. K. Jemisin. Orbit, an imprint of Little, Brown and Company.
- Sorcerer to the Crown by Zen Cho. Ace Books, an imprint of The Berkley Publishing Group.
Winner: The Fifth House of the Heart: A Novel by Ben Tripp. Gallery Books, an imprint of Simon and Schuster.
Flamboyant antiques dealer Asmodeus “Sax” Saxon-Tang made his fortune by accidentally killing a vampire with a horde of treasure. To protect the only person he loves, his niece, he’s forced to return to old Europe to assemble an eccentric team of vampire hunters in this gory, witty caper.
- A Head Full of Ghosts by Paul Tremblay. William Morrow, a division of HarperCollins.
- Little Girls by Ronald Malfi. Kensington Publishing Corp.
- The Silence by Tim Lebbon. Titan Books.
- When We Were Animals: a Novel by Joshua Gaylord. Mulholland Books, a division of Little, Brown and Company.
Winner: Golden Son by Pierce Brown. Del Rey, an imprint of Ballantine Books.
Insurgent Darrow inveigled his way into high Gold society in 2014’s Red Rising. In this dramatic, high octane follow-up, conflicting loyalties and his own ambitions lure Darrow into an untenable web of deceptions. Bolstered by new alliances, Darrow battles to overthrow corrupt lunar leadership and bring freedom to Mars.
- Futuristic Violence and Fancy Suits by David Wong. Thomas Dunne Books, an imprint of St. Martin’s Press, a division of Macmillan Publishers.
- Seveneves by Neal Stephenson. William Morrow, a division of HarperCollins.
- Slow Bullets by Alastair Reynolds. Tachyon.
- The Water Knife by Paolo Bacigalupi. Alfred A. Knopf, a division of Random House.
Closing note: An author whose name is familiar to sf/f/h fans also had a work on the Historical Fiction shortlist — Paradise Sky by Joe R. Lansdale.
[Thanks to Alan Ziebarth for the story.]