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Since the awards season is closing down, it might be a good time to look at possibles for next year. In June Joel Cunningham revealed what bookseller Barnes and Noble considered the best SFF books of the year up until then. Here’s the list:

All the Birds in the Sky, by Charlie Jane Anders
City of Blades, by Robert Jackson Bennett
A Gathering of Shadows, by V.E. Schwab
Morning Star, by Pierce Brown
Borderline, by Mishell Baker
The Spider’s War, by Daniel Abraham
Every Heart a Doorway, by Seanan McGuire
The Summer Dragon, by Todd Lockwood
Infomocracy, by Malka Older
The Medusa Chronicles, by Stephen Baxter and Alastair Reynolds
Too Like the Lightning, by Ada Palmer
Ninefox Gambit, by Yoon Ha Lee
The Geek Feminist Revolution, by Kameron Hurley

This looks like a nice mix of authors and styles, and it’s a fairly even split between male and female authors. Presumably because the list is made by a bookseller, book sales and reviews might have had something to do with appearance on the list. Looking a little further, five of these books have already appeared on the Nebula Reading List, that is: All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders, City of Blades by Robert Jackson Bennett, Borderline by Mishell Baker, Infomocracy by Malka Older and Too Like the Lightning by Ada Palmer.

There are other lists. Here’s one from Flavorwire:

A Gathering of Shadows, V.E. Schwab
The Winged Histories, Sofia Samatar
Borderline, Mishell Baker
The Paper Menagerie and Other Stories, Ken Liu (collection)
Sleeping Giants, Sylvain Neuvel
Too Like the Lightning, Ada Palmer
Central Station, Lavie Tidhar
Infomocracy, Malka Older
Super Extra Grande, YOSS
Ninefox Gambit, by Yoon Ha Lee

This list leans very heavily to women authors and includes more ethnic diversity. YOSS is a Cuban writer, for anyone who is unfamiliar with his work. Six of these books already appeared on the Nebula Reading List, including: A Gathering of Shadows by V.E. Schwab, The Winged Histories by Sofia Samatar, Borderline by Mishell Baker, Too Like the Lightning by Ada Palmer, Infomocracy by Malka Older and Ninefox Gambit by Yoon Ha Lee. You can also see the correspondence with the B&N list, as five of the books appear on both lists.

It looks like the Best Novel category for 2017 is taking shape already.

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