Thursday, January 03, 2013

Battle of the Books, Fall 2012 Bracket

battle books Announcing the Fall 2012 Fantastic Reviews Battle of the Books!

This is our fourth bracket of the Battle of the Books. For more about why we decided to do a Battle of the Books, click here. For all the rules, click here.

Aaron reviewed and judged the Winter and Spring brackets of the Battle of the Books, won by Elizabeth Bear and James Renner, and Amy is down to the finals of the (increasingly misnamed) Summer bracket. Now Amy hands the baton back to Aaron to review and judge the slightly belated Fall 2012 edition.

We've received 16 more contenders, selected four "seeded" books -- the four we are most looking forward to out of this group (marked with asterisks) -- placed one seeded book in each quarter of the bracket, and then filled in the rest of the bracket randomly.  Here are your matchups.

First Quarter of Bracket:


Brian McGreevy
Hemlock Grove
(Farrar Straus Giroux, Apr)
vs.
Dave Freer
Cuttlefish
(Pyr, July)


Chris Roberson
Further: Beyond the Threshold**
(47North, May)
vs.
Suzanne Johnson
Royal Street
(Tor, Apr)


Second Quarter of Bracket:


James Swain
Dark Magic
(Tor, May)
vs.
Leigh M. Lane
Finding Poe
(Cerebral, Mar)


Paolo Bacigalupi
The Drowned Cities**
(Little Brown, May)
vs.
Isaac A. McBeth
Alexander Wisbal and the Hall of Heroes
(Tate, Feb)


Third Quarter of Bracket:



David Searls
Bloodthirst in Babylon
(Samhain, May)
vs.
Mary Robinette Kowal
Glamour in Glass**
(Tor, Apr)



Erin Hoffman
Lance of Earth and Sky
(Pyr, Apr)
vs.
Ian C. Esslemont
Orb Sceptre Throne
(Tor, May)


Fourth Quarter of Bracket:



John Barnes
Losers in Space**
(Viking, Apr)
vs.
Hugh Matthews
Song of the Serpent
(Paizo, May)



Tim Westover
Auraria
(QW, July)
vs.
Stephen Graham Jones
Zombie Bake-Off
(Lazy Fascist, Feb)



To see the whole bracket, click here.

Some notes on the field:
-- Several of the books are difficult to classify, but by my best count 3 are science fiction, 3 contemporary fantasy, 3 high fantasy, 4 historical fantasy, and 3 horror.
-- The field is comprised of twelve men and four women; no collaborations this time.
-- The contestants include 4 books from Tor, 2 from Pyr, and 1 each from 4 major publishers (47North, Farrar Straus Giroux, Little Brown, and Viking), 3 small publishers (Lazy Fascist, Paizo, and Samhain), and 3 independent or vanity publishers (Cerebral, QW, Tate). No indie book has won a round in the first three Battles; we'll see if one can break through this time.
-- 2 of the books are direct sequels, 3 are new stories set in existing fictional universes, and 11 are original (although several are clearly intended to be the first in a new series).

Best of luck to all the competitors!

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