Alright; my annual Best Books of the Year! I know I'm jumping the gun a little here-- these keep coming earlier & earlier in December-- but I'm anxious to talk about it. I'm at a hundred & twenty-one books for the year so far, & while I'll get a few more under my belt before the ball drops in Times Square, I'm pretty happy with that number. It is a bit of an interesting list, as it turns out; I always find myself surprised by some of the idiosyncracies in my taste. What ends up sticking with me. As usual, I have some books that are stand-ins for a greater category-- a single book of the Hyperion Cantos, one volume acting as an avatar for A Song of Ice & Fire, or the Lankhmar books, that kind of thing. I've also included an Honorable Mentions list, which I think ends up being just as valid as the Best Of list; over the course of time I find that some books made a greater impression on me than I noticed at the time, while other books that I thought knocked my socks off lose some of their lustre with the passage of time. I re-read a couple of books this year that I almost wanted to throw on this list-- All-Star Superman & Brother Termite-- but I thought it best to stick to books that were new to me. So then, let's get to it! Drum roll, please!
Best of 2011
Supergods by Grant Morrison.
The Last Unicorn by Peter S. Beagle.
GURPS New Sun by Michael Andre-Driussi.
Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty by Andrew Bolton, photography by Sølve Sundsbø.
Hyperion by Dan Simmons.
Kris Kuksi: Divination and Delusion by Kris Kuksi.
A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin.
Surface Detail by Iain M. Banks.
Lankhmar Book Four: Swords Against Wizardry by Fritz Leiber.
Excrement in the Late Middle Ages: Sacred Filth and Chaucer's Fecopoetics by Susan Signe Morrison.
Hark! A Vagrant by Kate Beaton.
Feynman by Jim Ottaviani & Leland Myrick.
The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood.
Tricks of the Mind by Derren Brown.
The Long and the Short of It: More Essays on the Fiction of Gene Wolfe by Robert Borski.
Kandors by Mike Kelley, edited by Rafael Jablonka.
Mirrors: Infinite Macabre by White Wolf.
Americus by M.K. Reed & Jonathan Hill.
Master of Devils by Dave Gross.
All Men of Genius by Lev A. C. Rosen.