Thursday, January 30, 2014

The Best of 2013

Each year, the reviewers here at the New Podler Review of Books pick the book (or books) which we feel are the very best independently published (or small press) works. The only other requirement we have is that it was reviewed here on the blog.

Here are the winners for 2013:

The Bookworm: I'm going to go with Realmgolds by Mike Reeves McMillian. It's everything that a reader could want in a steampunk novel. It combines politics, innovation, social unrest and the fight for basic freedoms in a compelling story. And the books in the series are even better.
Black Book Rob: Black Book: Volume 1 by Dylan Jones, is my pick for the best of 2013. It had a cool blending of genres (Western, sci-fi, and fantasy) that you don't often see in traditionally published books. However, be aware that it's a serial novel made up of three "episodes." You'll need to buy future volumes to learn the characters' ultimate fates.

A Calculated Life - Original CoverDED: It should come as no surprise that my selection for the best book of 2013 is Anne Charnock's A Calculated Life. It is an excellent character study of a young augmented woman named Jayna who works for a global trends analytical firm. Her journey of self-discovery is what makes this story. Charnock deftly bonds the reader to Jayna by granting us unfettered access to her mind, thus making us her mute confidant.

Since my review, the novel was picked up by 47 North, Amazon Publishing's speculative fiction division, and nominated for the 2013 Philip K. Dick Award.

We reviewed 24 stories last year and rejected over 170. Considering that we were closed for seven months, that's still a fair amount of submissions.

1 comment:

Mike Reeves-McMillan said...

Thanks very much for the honour! And great timing, since the third book just came out today in the series of which Realmgolds is the first.