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4th Annual SF Site Readers' Choice: Best Read of 2001

Vote For Your Favourite Books of the Year

by Neil Walsh

2001: a year that, in the science fiction psyche of the world, held more promise than any other date we've passed yet. Even though we haven't progressed very far in the realms of AI, VR or space travel, 2001 has still proven to be a memorable year for many reasons -- not all of them good ones. But let's forget about the troubled times we're living in for just a moment and focus on the really important things in life: books.

Books are important? Sure they are! Writing is the foundation of civilization; literature is a pillar of human expression; speculative fiction is the apex of creative thought. This isn't just kids' stuff; SF is critical to the development of humanity. That's why it's important to put a finger on the jugular of SF regularly, to listen to the coursing lifeblood of the future echoing in the pulse of the present. And here at the SF Site, we do an annual check-up in the form of the Readers' Choice: Best Read of the Year Top 10 list, wherein SF Site readers are invited -- nay, entreated -- to vote for what they thought were the best bar-none genre books they've read in the past year.

So here's my entreaty to you: Vote for the 10 best SF books you've read over the past year.

What's Eligible

Same rules apply as for previous years: each SF Site reader may vote for the 10 books he or she most enjoyed reading this year. (Note: "books" are defined as any medium that involves reading as a primary means of conveying the message, including but not limited to novels, collections, anthologies, chapbooks, essays, biographies, comic books, e-books, magazines, or what-have-you.) You can vote for anything that was released in English in the 2001 calendar year, either for the first time, as a new edition, a reprint, or a new translation to English. The mandate of the SF Site requires that we only consider material related to speculative fiction -- fantasy, science fiction or horror (or any of their associated sub-genres) -- but we're pretty flexible about what falls under that broad umbrella, and we're willing to consider anything our readers think worthy of recommending to other readers of SF. Complete rules are as follows:


  • In an e-mail, list up to 10 of your favourite books of 2001, in order, with your top choice as #1, etc.
  • Remember to clearly indicate your #1 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.
  • Remember to list the title and author for each of your choices.
  • E-mail your list to editor@sfsite.com with "VOTE" in the subject line. Please don't forget to put "VOTE" in the subject line, otherwise you run the risk of having your e-mail mistakenly diverted to my unsolicited junk mail folder.
  • Each voter may vote one time only for up to 10 books. NO BALLOT STUFFING, PLEASE! Cheating is not only unethical, it's also really annoying and therefore will not be tolerated. I won't shoot cheaters under the table, but I will disqualify all their votes.
  • Deadline for voting is 15 February 2002 at midnight, Eastern Standard Time.

Results, Past & Future

In the Mid-February issue of SF Site, we'll provide you with the results of the SF Site Best Read of 2001 Top 10 list, as chosen by the SF Site editors and contributors. In the March issue, we'll post the results of the Readers' Choice Top 10 for 2001 so you can compare. If you want to see the results of previous years...

Readers' Choice: Best Read of 2000
Readers' Choice: Best Read of 1999
Readers' Choice: Best Read of 1998
Best Read of the Year: 2000
Best Read of the Year: 1999
Best Read of the Year: 1998
Best Read of the Year: 1997

Unlike more traditional awards, your choices here are not limited to a brief list of nominations. As mentioned above, just about anything that appeared in 2001 is eligible. I can't list all the possible titles you could choose from, but if your memory needs a bit of a jog, please have a look at the archive of our New Arrivals column, wherein we've listed new and forthcoming books received each month at the SF Site. It's only a starting point, though. If you want to vote for something we don't have listed, that's great; we'd love to hear your recommendations.

(When looking at the New Arrivals archive, note that 2001 books are in the left-hand column.)

Some of the Books of 2001

Thanks for voting!

Copyright © 2001 Neil Walsh

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