The Goodreads Choice Awards came out today. It's interesting, cross-referencing these very populist awards with the Hugo battles I've been watching for the last couple of years.
I've read and enjoyed several of these books (and in fact I voted for some of them). Loved Stephen King's End of Watch and his son Joe Hill's The Fireman. I also enjoyed Harry Potter and the Cursed Child very much.
I've read Underground Railroad and was blown away, and I'm re-reading it for my grownup litfic bookclub -- I'm not going to talk about it much here because it's not really YA. What it is is magical realism about a slave escaping her way through the old South. It's a book that made me horribly sad, and the themes in it are very mature, and no, the Underground Railroad wasn't a literal train in real life, that's the magical realism. Yes, I did discuss slavery and its horrors in the context of George R.R. Martin's Fevre Dream, but this book is on a whole other level and it deserves to be discussed in classier places than this, so I'll just shut up now, with a suggestion that reading it may be a very worthwhile experience if you're interested in the subject matter.
Pierce Brown's Morning Star won for science fiction. I have another book in that series on my Kindle, and I've bounced off of it three or four times now, so I think I'll pass, but I'll note that a lot of people seem to like this series. I am very interested in Frans de Waal's book on animals and Alwyn Hamilton's debut novel -- which falls in the YA speculative fiction category I notice. Glad that one seems to have a broad appeal.
And finally, down in the categories for young people, exiled at the bottom of the page (what's up with that?): the YA fiction winner is Salt To The Sea, a WWII maritime tragedy story by Ruta Sepetys. The YA science fiction/fantasy winner is Sarah J. Maas, for A Court of Mist and Fury, which is 2nd in a series and has a love triangle. And the middle grade winner is Rick Riordan -- I'm fond of him -- for The Hidden Oracle, a modern day Greek mythos story. I wonder if Charon is in it.
Since I didn't get any votes at all, the plan is clear: write more books (maybe promote them too); continue doing so until award or death results. Along those lines I've been talking to my fantastically talented cover artist, Brian Allen, and I shall have not one but two (2) releases coming out next year. If you keep reading this blog, no doubt you'll hear way more about them than you really want to, but I promise to throw some interesting posts in from time to time, to mix it up somewhat.