At the end of every year, I go through the books I've read & I pick out some of my favorites as my best of the year. It is incredibly imprecise; the books are in no order at all, other than a pile of "best of" & "honorable mention." Actually, that is a bit of a lie, they are in a sort of an order, & that is sorted by pixel, by the size of their thumbnails, so the montages aren't too lopsided. Even the "best of" & "honorable mention" piles are pretty porous; if I went through & picked out which books from past "best of" collections actually stuck with me, I'd have to switch a lot around. That is actually why I have an honorable mention list; it will help me in five years when I go & do a "best books of the decade" round-up. Besides all that, there are books that will slip through the cracks. I read the sequel to The Search for WondLa, which made it onto 2010's honorable mentions & I read The Fifty Year Sword by Mark Danielewski, which I really liked a lot, maybe even enough to put it on one of these lists. I reviewed them for Tor.com, though, & the posts haven't gone up yet, so I overlooked them when I was going through my archives. There is also the chance I'll finish something by the end of the year, too. Oh well. It is an imperfect process but at least it is a process! Speaking of Tor.com, there already was a sneak peak of my top three on there, too. Oh, there is also the fact that on some of the books I sort of cheated-- I listed The Tales of the Otori & Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind as complete works. I don't care, I can do what I want, I'm the boss of this list. Also worth mentioning that those two series are big influences on the next Oubliette campaign that I'm working on. Enough chatter; on with the show!
Among Others by Jo Walton.
Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind by Hayao Miyazaki.
Roverandom by J.R.R. Tolkien.
The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss.
Xenogenesis by Octavia Butler.
Problem Sleuth, Book Three: Suitor to the Sodajerk's Confidante by Andrew Hussie.
32 Fangs by David Wellington.
Queen of Thorns by Dave Gross.
The Sword-Edged Blonde by Alex Bledsoe.
Tales of the Otori by Lian Hearn.
Glamour in Glass by Mary Robinette Kowal.
Bitterblue by Kristin Cashore.
Danse Macabre by White Wolf.
The Manual of Aeronautics by Keith Thompson & Scott Westerfeld.
How To Think Like a Neandertal by Thomas Wynn & Frederick Coolidge.
A Wrinkle in Time: The Graphic Novel by Madeleine L'Engle & Hope Larson.
Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo.
Distant Worlds by James L. Sutter, et al.
Songs of the Dying Earth edited by George R. R. Martin & Gardner Dozois.
Lone Survivors by Chris Stringer.