Thursday, December 31, 2009

TopDragon Awards 2009!

This is always difficult for me.  I tend to like most books that I read and very few are not pleasurable reading experiences in one way or another.  Still, some are a cut above the rest and so I present these annual awards.  There are no qualifications to be entered into this award program other than I must have read the book during the calendar year.  Doesn't matter when it was published or even if it's still in print.  I don't judge by what a critic might say or by how much publicity it may have received or whether or not my friends liked it.  Simply, I judge by how much I enjoyed reading it.  FYI, the "Sleeper" award is for a book I didn't really expect to be all that good but it turned out to be surprisingly enjoyable.  Also, to be eligible for the Grand Prize, the book must have won in one of the lower levels.  So, without further are the 2009 TopDragon Awards:

Best Nonfiction: American Caesar, Douglas MacArthur
 byWilliam Manchester

Best Classic Fiction: The Fountainhead
 by Ayn Rand

Best Historical Fiction: River God
by Wilbur Smith

Best Mystery: The Cat Who Tailed a Thief
by Lilian Jackson Braun

Best Adventure: Conspiracies, (Repairman Jack #3)
by F. Paul Wilson

Best Western Fiction: The Cherokee Trail
by Louis L'Amour

Best General Fiction: The Carpetbaggers
by Harold Robbins

Best Young Adult Novel: Starlight (Warriors, The New Prophecy #4)
by Erin Hunter

Best Horror: Sandman Slim
by Richard Kadrey

Best Science Fiction: The Psi Corps Trilogy
by J. Gregory Keyes

Best Fantasy: The Name of the Wind
by Patrick Rothfuss

Best Short Story: Survivor Type
by Stephen King

Best Audio Book: Night Over Water
by Ken Follett

Sleeper Award: Top Producer
by Norb Vonnegut

Grand Award Winner: The Name of the Wind
by Patrick Rothfuss

Runner up: River God
by Wilbur Smith

A few notes on my reading year:  I read 98 books this year, 11 of which were audio books.  That equals almost 36,000 pages (not counting audio books of course).  I also read 49 short stories making that, by far, the most competitive category for an award.

Happy New Year to all!


  1. Nice list. I liked going back and reading your previous winners. Where do you read the short stories? Lit. journals, anthologies?

  2. Thanks, TopDragon. It's nice to be here.

    Best wishes to you for 2010.


  3. Murph: I used to read a lot of short stories from magazines, expecially science fiction from Asimov's. But lately it's been entirely from collections in book form, usually by authors I enjoy or perhaps of a particular genre. My next one is "Cat O'Nine Tales" by Jeffrey Archer which, curiously, contains 12 tales...

    Mr Vonnegut: Discovering your book was truly one of my reading hi-lights this year. I hope to read more from you real soon (and someday join you as a published novelist).

  4. Your blog keeps getting better and better! Your older articles are not as good as newer ones you have a lot more creativity and originality now keep it up!

  5. I haven't read your top two! I'll get to them soon!

  6. Anita, be careful with my #1 "The Name of the Wind." It's only the first of a projected trilogy and the author has become somewhat infamous for taking a long time to come out with the next one. It could easily be another 4-5 years before we see the third of this series!


Top 10 Books in no particular order (Well Known Authors)

  • "The Stand" by Stephen King
  • "Kane and Able" by Jeffrey Archer
  • "The Killer Angels" by Michael Shaara
  • "The Dark Elf Trilogy" by RA Salvatore
  • "Name of the Wind" by Patrick Rothfuss
  • "River God" by Wilbur Smith
  • "Mortalis" by RA Salvatore
  • "Ender's Game" by Orson Scott Card
  • "Centennial" by James A Michener
  • "The Repairman Jack" series by F. Paul Wilson

Top Books/ Series in no particular order (Lesser Known Authors)

  • "The Sculpter" by Gregory Funaro
  • "Power Down" by Ben Coes
  • "Revolution at Sea Saga" by James L. Nelson
  • "Black Rain" by Graham Brown
  • "Top Producer" by Norb Vonnegut
  • "Prairie" by Anna Lee Waldo
  • "The Wild Blue" by W. Boyne & S Thompson
  • "Unsolicited" series by Julie Kaewert
  • "Freedom" by William Safire