Here are the best of 2008. These are not necessarily things that first appeared this year, they are just the things that I read, watched or listened to this year, excluding personal reading projects.
The best books I read in 2008 were:
- Rollback by Robert J. Sawyer (2007)
- Laika by Nick Abadzis (2007)
- Spectrum 14 edited by Cathy and Arnie Fenner (2007)
- The Lathe of Heaven by Ursula K. LeGuin (1971)
- Little Brother by Cory Doctorow (2008)
- The Affinity Bridge by George Mann (2008)
- Necroscope by Brian Lumley (1977)
- Planet of the Apes by Pierre Boulle (1963)
- The Watchmen by Alan Moore (1987)
The best anthologies & collections were:
- Wastelands: Stories of the Apocalypse edited by John Joseph Adams (2008)
- Seeds of Change edited by John Joseph Adams (2008)
- Galactic North by Alastair Reynolds (2007)
- Mini-Masterpieces of Science Fiction edited by Allan Kaster (2008)
- Fast Forward 2 edited by Lou Anders (2008)
The best films I watched were:
Read on for the longer version…
BOOKS, ANTHOLOGIES AND COLLECTIONS:
- Wastelands: Stories of the Apocalypse edited by John Joseph Adams
- Half the Blood of Brooklyn by Charlie Huston
- Debatable Space by Philip Palmer
- Three Shadows by Cyril Pedrosa
- The Dreaming Void by Peter F. Hamilton
- Rollback by Robert J. Sawyer
- Jumper by Steven Gould
- Griffin’s Story by Steven Gould
- Jim Baen’s Universe #11
- Hunter’s Run by George R.R. Martin, Gardener Dozois, & Daniel Abraham
- Galactic Empires edited by Gardner Dozois
- Blue War by Jeffrey Thomas
- Laika by Nick Abadzis
- [Various] 2007 Nebula Award Short Fiction Nominees
- Spectrum 14 edited by Cathy and Arnie Fenner
- Space Vulture by Gary K. Wolf and Archbishop John J. Meyers
- Pump Six and Other Stories by Paolo Bacigalupi
- The Lathe of Heaven by Ursula K. LeGuin
- The Solaris Book of New Science Fiction, Volume 2 edited by George Mann
- Majestrum by Matthew Hughes
- Little Brother by Cory Doctorow
- [Various] 2008 Hugo Award Short Fiction Nominees
- The Digital Plague by Jeff Somers
- Little Vampire by Joann Sfar
- Jim Baen’s Universe #12
- The Crystal Cosmos by Rhys Hughes
- [Various] Chris Roberson’s Celestial Empire Stories (Part 1)
- The Best Science Fiction and Fantasy of the Year Volume 2 edited by Jonathan Strahan
- Sly Mongoose by Tobias S. Buckell
- The Affinity Bridge by George Mann
- Plague Year
- Seeds of Change edited by John Joseph Adams
- Stalking the Unicorn by Mike Resnick
- Galactic North by Alastair Reynolds
- Mini-Masterpieces of Science Fiction edited by Allan Kaster
- The Year’s Best Science Fiction #25 edited by Gardner Dozois
- Zoe’s Tale by John Scalzi
- Pirate Sun by Karl Schroeder
- Every Last Drop by Charlie Huston
- Sideways in Crime edited by Lou Anders
- Necroscope by Brian Lumley
- Beyond Apollo by Barry Malzberg
- Stalking the Vampire by Mike Resnick
- The Living Dead edited by John Joseph Adams
- Planet of the Apes by Pierre Boulle
- Sunborn by Jeffrey A. Carver
- Hater by David Moody
- Iron Jaw and Hummingbird by Chris Roberson
- Extraordinary Engines edited by Nick Gevers
- Fast Forward 2 edited by Lou Anders
- The Watchmen by Alan Moore
- Cloverfield – Take away the gimmicky shaky camera and you have a mediocre monster flick.
- Spider-Man 3 – Lots of good elements but sadly not put together well.
- Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull – Yeah, totally incredulaous, but still a high nostalgic quotient.
- Iron Man – A well-done superhero flick? What could possibly be better? Maybe…
- The Dark Knight – Not just a good superhero flick, but also a great film.
- Wall-E – When I hear people who didn’t get it, I tell them “What? It’s a biting social commentary on modern cosumerism and eco-negligence. What’s not to love?”
- Light and the Sufferer – A near-identical translation of the source material, with the same problems, too.
- Planet of the Apes (1968) – An excellent science fiction film whose social commentary still stands up today.
- The X-Files: I Want to Believe – Felt like a decent epsiode of the TV series.
- Transformers – Dumb fun.
- Timecrimes – A tightly-plotted, intelligent time travel thriller.
I’ve been enjoying Eureka, Doctor Who, The Sarah Jane Adventures, and especially the new X-Files clone Fringe. Oh, and Doctor Horrible was exactly the opposite.
I had a very good reading year! Compared with last year, I did a much better job choosing material that suited my tastes. Some of the worst reading experiences were with short stories. I read fewer books than last year, I think because time has been at a premium. I therefore augmented my reading time with graphic novels and shorter works. I still managed to get in 51 book-related reviews done, though, which is more than I thought I’d do.
Anyway, that’s my year!