Fuzzy Nation vs. Self-Made Man
Winner: Fuzzy Nation
A no-brainer. I didn’t like Self-Made Man very much, and Fuzzy Nation had Carl the dog. The first depends way too much on the idea of One True Masculinity, whereas the latter is a science fiction romp through neo-colonialism! And adorable fuzzy sentient beings. And Carl the dog! Have I mentioned Carl the dog? Carl the dog blows things up sometimes. Carl is awesome.
Spider Bones vs. Atomic Robo Vol. 4: Other Strangeness
Winner: Atomic Robo
DR. DINOSAUR! Do I need to say anything more?
Okay, Spider Bones was only a serviceable mystery, and I don’t actually remember if Dr. Dinosaur was in this particular volume, but the mere potential for Dr. Dinosaurness makes it an easy decision. Plus, I do love Atomic Robo. I just love Dr. Dinosaur more.
Children of Dune vs. The Uplift War
Winner: The Uplift War
This is a tough one. Both science fiction, both books I enjoyed. But in the end, The Uplift War stands out a bit more clearly to me from months remove. The attempt at finding alienness in a hostile universe in which humans are far from the dominant species speaks to me more than the twins trying to establish a beachhead of power on Dune.
The Girl With Glass Feet vs. Gone Girl
Winner: The Girl With Glass Feet
Battle of the “Girls”! But not a close one. Yes, Gone Girl might have spurred me to write my most popular review ever on Goodreads, but the book itself was just okay. The Girl With Glass Feet on the other hand, was right in my wheelhouse with spooky intertwining of legend and fiction, and a strong emphasis on loss and death. It’s a moving, magical book.
The Empire of the Sun vs. The Doomsday Book
Winner: The Doomsday Book
Sorry, heartfelt look at a boy’s experience of war! The Doomsday Book woke me up at night worrying about the characters. The Doomsday Book made me weep at the end. While Empire of the Sun was interesting, it just can’t measure up to Connie Willis’ masterpiece about time travel and the Black Death.