For this new seasonal end of year list, the third book cover that I pick is Stephanie Saulter’s debut novel for Jo Fletcher Books, Gemsigns, the first novel in the ®Evolution near-future series which deals with the ethics of genetic engineering and whether or not those genetically engineered can be considered human or not. It is the most thought-provoking novel that I’ve read this year and also one of the best. Where most SFF novels content themselves with telling a story with good/great characters, this novel went the extra mile and actually made me think about the events therein.
And the third comics cover that I pick is the fourth and final issue of Mateus Santolouco and Erik Burnham’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Secret History of The Foot Clan, which Mateus drew as well. A short mini-series that delved into the origins of Shredder, the Foot Clan and Master Splinter himself, it stands as one of the best TMNT stories that I’ve experienced to date. Possibly the best. Which is a pretty damn big deal, all things considered. It reignited my love of the characters and the setting, something that I won’t be forgetting any time soon.
So without further ado, hit the break to see both the covers in all their glory! The full list of all these covers is available here.
I did two “Best of the…” lists last year, one for the half-year from January to June, and the other for the half-year from July to December. The lists proved to be quite popular, and I was recently asked if I was going to be doing any more. To which I said yes. I like putting together lists like this. It gives me a chance to reflect a bit on all the good stuff I’ve been reading in novels and comics, or listening to in terms of audiobooks, audio dramas and so on.
You can check out my top-of-the-month lists on my Reading Awards page and this list is both an extension, and a continuation of what goes on there.
Let’s see what makes the cut and which comes close then!
As most people who follow my reviews know, I rarely do negative reviews. Part of it is my experience with doing negative reviews, and another is that I consider myself to be somewhat easy to impress (more on all that here). Another part is that I do negative reviews when I feel strongly about the work in question. If a book, for me, is bad, then that means that I consider it to be pretty terrible. Especially when I have some high expectations of it. One such novel was The Emperor’s Knife, the 2011 debut by Mazarkis Williams. Now, I read the novel way back early in the year and this review is somewhat from memory, so if I get details wrong, I do apologize.