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10th Annual SF Site Readers' Choice: Best Read of 2007

Vote For Your Favourite Books of the Year

by Neil Walsh

The Lies of Locke Lamora
The Lies of Locke Lamora
Anansi Boys
Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell

House of Chains
Perdido Street Station
A Clash of Kings
Smoke and Mirrors:  Short Fictions and Illusions

2007 marks the 10th anniversary of the annual SF Site Readers' Choice Best of the Year Awards. For the past 10 years, this has been the season when we solicit you, our faithful readers (and, hey, why not? even our intermittent readers) for your input on what you thought were the best books you've read in the past year. We'll grind your votes through our top-of-the-line super-secret vote-counting software, and post the results in February or early March as the Top 10 Readers' Choice Best Books of the Year.

This past fall, there was a provincial election in my home province (that's like a state, for my American neighbours) in which we also had a referendum. The referendum question was, did we want to change from having one vote to two votes -- one for the local candidate of your choice, plus one for the party of your choice. Largely, I think, due to a campaign of misinformation, this proposal for electoral reform did not pass. Can you believe people here are happy having just one vote when they could have had two? At the SF Site, we believe that even two votes aren't enough. We give you ten.

Yes, in honour of our 10th anniversary of the Readers' Choice Awards we're going to give you ten (count them -- 10!) votes.

...Ok, so, we've always given you 10 votes. But c'mon! 10 years. Isn't that exciting? I tell you, I'm pumped about it. Anyhow, here are the rules for participating, unchanged from the rules of previous years.

What's Eligible for Your Vote

Any book is eligible if it

  • meets our definition of a "book",1
  • is in some way related to "speculative fiction",2 and
  • was released in the 2007 calendar year.3
1.   For this purpose, we define a "book" as any collection of printed words that requires reading as a primary means of conveying the message, including but not limited to novels, novellas, collections, anthologies, chapbooks, essays, biographies, comic books, graphic novels, e-books, magazines, etc.

2.   Related to "speculative fiction" means anything that could reasonably be said to be associated in some way with fiction of a speculative nature (including, but not limited to science fiction, fantasy, horror, historical fiction, alternate history, and probably even a fair selection of what is generally considered mainstream fiction). By "related to" speculative fiction, we mean to include such non-fiction items as biographies, essays, speculative science writing, etc., as well as any sub-genre fiction or associated non-fiction.

3.   "Released in the 2007 calendar year" means that your chosen book must have been released in English during the 2007 calendar year, either for the first time, or as a new edition, or a new translation to English, or even a "new" reprint.

If you think a book might, could or should be eligible, go ahead and vote for it. Voting is wide open -- there's no list of nominations to choose from. If it was so good that you think it's one of the 10 best things you read all year, we definitely want to hear about it.

To get you started, we offer a sampling of books that appeared in the past year: browse through our New Arrivals archive, linked below. Check out the pages listed under 2007. Please note, however, that these pages will not provide you with anything close to a complete list of books from 2007.

Some of the books of the past year

So that's what to vote for. Here's how to vote...

How You Vote
  • In the body of an e-mail, list 4 to 10 of your favourite books of 2007, in your order of preference, with your top choice clearly indicated as #1, second choice listed second, etc.  Please do not submit your list as an attachment; e-mails with attachments are filtered out and will not be read.
  • Remember to clearly indicate your #1 choice, second choice, etc. as the votes are weighted according to your own personal ranking. If you didn't read 10 books worthy of inclusion, you are welcome to choose fewer than 10, but please include at least 4.
  • Remember to list the title and author for each of your choices, or the specific issue(s) of a periodical such as a magazine or comic book. If you know the publisher, you may include that information as well, although it is not strictly required.
  • E-mail your list to vote@sfsite.com with "VOTE" in the subject line.
       Please don't forget to put "VOTE" in the subject line, or your e-mail may be mistaken for spam and dealt with accordingly*.
  • Each voter may vote one time only for up to 10 books. If you share an e-mail address with someone else, only one of you should submit your list (perhaps you could agree on one list between you). If you personally have more than one e-mail address, you still only get to submit one list -- not one list per e-mail address.
       You get 10 votes, so there's really no need to try and cheat. Ballot stuffers are easier to track than you might think and they will simply have all of their votes disqualified.
  • Deadline for voting is Friday, 8 February 2008 at midnight, Eastern Standard Time.
* Note on spam: SF Site now uses the Cult of Shudde-M'ell Spam Filter™ version 3.0, with a patented and eternally tortuous method of doing something so vile to the tainted spammer soul of the original sender that it's not fully disclosed in the product literature. SF Site bears no responsibility for anything bad that happens to spammers, but hopes they enjoy wallowing in the digestive juices of extra planar demonic entities while gargling napalm and broken glass, because that's what the pamphlet did describe, before it declined to offer further and more gruesome details.
Past & Future Results

While you're choosing your favourite books of the past year, SF Site editors and contributors will also be working on our own version of the SF Site Best Read of 2007. We'll post the results of both the Readers' Choice Top 10 and the Editors' Choice Top 10 in February and March, so you can see how your choices tally with ours. Ideally, we'll all find some great recommendations for book from the past year.

If you want to see what made it to the top 10 lists over the past decade, I encourage you to have a look at these results:

Readers' Choice: Best Read of 2006
Readers' Choice: Best Read of 2005
Readers' Choice: Best Read of 2004
Readers' Choice: Best Read of 2003
Readers' Choice: Best Read of 2002
Readers' Choice: Best Read of 2001
Readers' Choice: Best Read of 2000
Readers' Choice: Best Read of 1999
Readers' Choice: Best Read of 1998
Best Read of the Year: 2006
Best Read of the Year: 2005
Best Read of the Year: 2004
Best Read of the Year: 2003
Best Read of the Year: 2002
Best Read of the Year: 2001
Best Read of the Year: 2000
Best Read of the Year: 1999
Best Read of the Year: 1998
Best Read of the Year: 1997

Thanks in advance for your participation. We're looking forward to seeing your choices for the Best of 2007.

Copyright © 2007 by Neil Walsh

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