Reviews by Rating

While I’m sympathetic to arguments that you can’t reduce a novel to a simple “three out of five”…I do it anyway, because I think concerns about oversimplication are trumped by utility. When I’m visiting someone else’s blog or review site and they seem to have similar enough tastes to mine, the next thing I want to know is what else they like so I can find more good stuff to read.

The basic rubric I use is that four star books are good and recommended, three star books are recommended only with large qualifications, two star books are actively disliked, and one star books I outright hate (thankfully this is rare). Five star books are particularly good books that also resonate with my particular interests. Your mileage will vary.

Five Stars

House of Niccolo by Dorothy Dunnett

Farseer Trilogy by Robin Hobb

Magic For Beginners by Kelly Link

Watchmen by Alan Moore

Book of the Long Sun by Gene Wolfe
Book of the New Sun by Gene Wolfe
Book of the Short Sun by Gene Wolfe
Fifth Head of Cerberus by Gene Wolfe
The Wizard Knight by Gene Wolfe

Lord of Light by Roger Zelazny

Four Stars

First Law Trilogy by Joe Abercrombie
Long Price Quartet by Daniel Abraham

Surface Detail by Iain M Banks
The Manual of Detection by Jedidiah Berry
Teckla by Steven Brust
A Civil Campaign by Lois McMaster Bujold
Borders of Infinity by Lois McMaster Bujold
Brothers in Arms by Lois McMaster Bujold
Cetaganda by Lois McMaster Bujold
Mirror Dance by Lois McMaster Bujold
The Vor Game by Lois McMaster Bujold
Warrior's Apprentice by Lois McMaster Bujold
Parable of the Sower by Octavia Butler

Land of Laughs by Jonathan Carroll
The Final Solution by Michael Chabon
Regenesis by CJ Cherryh
Stories of Your Life and Others by Ted Chiang
Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell by Susanna Clarke
The Dragon Never Sleeps by Glen Cook

Secret Country Trilogy by Pamela Dean

Belgariad by David Eddings
Gardens of the Moon by Steven Erikson
House of Chains by Steven Erikson
Memories of Ice by Steven Erikson
Midnight Tides by Steven Erikson
Reaper's Gale by Steven Erikson
The Bonehunters by Steven Erikson

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time by Mark Haddon
Commonwealth Saga by Peter F Hamilton
Citizen of the Galaxy by Robert Heinlein
Liveship Traders Trilogy by Robin Hobb

Tigana by Guy Gavriel Kay
Under Heaven by Guy Gavriel Kay

Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch

Book of Knights by Yves Maynard
The Road by Cormac McCarthy
Riddle-master Trilogy by Patricia McKillip
Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell
V for Vendetta by Alan Moore
Silverlock by John Myers Myers

Chaos Walking Trilogy by Patrick Ness

Who Fears Death by Nnedi Okorafor

Anubis Gates by Tim Powers

The Quantum Thief by Hannu Rajaniemi
The Sparrow by Mary Doria Russell
Air by Geoff Ryman

Warbreaker by Brandon Sanderson
Mistborn Trilogy by Brandson Sanderson
Talion: Revenant by Michael Stackpole
Anathem by Neal Stephenson
Schismatrix by Bruce Sterling
Blade of Tyshalle by Matthew Stover
Heroes Die by Matthew Stover
Year of Our War by Steph Swainston
Stations of the Tide by Michael Swanwick

The King of Attolia by Megan Whelan Turner
The Queen of Attolia by Megan Whelan Turner
The Thief by Megan Whelan Turner
Conspiracy of Kings by Meghan Whelan Turner

The Dragon Masters by Jack Vance

Starfish by Peter Watts
War of the Flowers by Tad Williams
Free Live Free by Gene Wolfe
Solder of Arete by Gene Wolfe
Soldier in the Mist by Gene Wolfe
The Sorcerer's House by Gene Wolfe
Urth of the New Sun by Gene Wolfe
Wolf's Cub by Mackay Wood
Golden Age Trilogy by John C Wright

A Night in Lonesome October by Roger Zelazny

Three Stars

Prince of Nothing Trilogy by R Scott Bakker
Wasp Factory by Iain Banks
Lighthouse Duet by Carol Berg
The Etched City by KJ Bishop
Jhereg by Steven Brust
Taltos by Steven Brust
Yendi by Steven Brust
Curse of Chalion by Lois McMaster Bujold
Ethan of Athos by Lois McMaster Bujold
Paladin of Souls by Lois McMaster Bujold
Storm Front by Jim Butcher

Ender's Shadow by Orson Scott Card
Bones of the Moon by Jonathan Carroll
Sleeping in Flame by Jonathan Carroll
Little, Big by John Crowley

Way of the Pilgrim by Gordon R Dickson
First Chronicles of Thomas Covenant by Stephen Donaldson
Second Chronicles of Thomas Covenant by Stephen Donaldson

Mallorean by David Eddings
Deadhouse Gates by Steven Erikson
Night of Knives by Ian C Esslemont

Black Sun Rising by CS Friedman

Stardust by Neil Gaiman
Thunderer by Felix Gilman

Tawny Man Trilogy by Robin Hobb

A Prayer for Owen Meany by John Irving

Deep Secret by Diana Wynne Jones

Last Light of the Sun by Guy Gavriel Kay
Beggars in Spain by Nancy Kress

Gun, With Occasional Music by Jonathan Lethem
Moneyball by Michael Lewis

Stone Canal by Ken MacLeod
The Star Fraction by Ken MacLeod
The Light Ages by Ian R. Macleod
The Great Wheel by Ian R Macleod
A Song of Ice and Fire 1 – 4 by George R R Martin
Counting Heads by David Marusek
Positively Fifth Street by James McManus
Embassytown by China Miéville
Iron Council by China Miéville
Kraken by China Miéville
The Dark Knight Returns by Frank Miller
Altered Carbon by Richard Morgan

The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger

Good Omens by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett

Berserkers: The Beginning by Fred Saberhagen
Old Man's War by John Scalzi
The Ghost Brigades by John Scalzi
Olympos by Dan Simmons
Family Trade by Charles Stross
Singularity Sky by Charles Stross

City of Pearl by Karen Traviss

Dying Earth by Jack Vance
The Eyes of the Overworld by Jack Vance
Rainbows End by Vernor Vinge

Memory, Sorrow, and Thorn by Tad Williams
Castleview by Gene Wolfe
Innocents Aboard by Gene Wolfe
Soldier of Sidon by Gene Wolfe

The First Chronicles of Amber by Roger Zelazny

Two Stars

Neuropath by R. Scott Bakker

Hammerfall by CJ Cherryh

Madness Season by CS Friedman

The Rose and the Entire by Kay Kenyon

The City & the City by China Miéville
League of Extraordinary Gentlemen by Alan Moore

Halo: The Fall of Reach by Eric Nylund

Engineer's Trilogy by KJ Parker
Titus Groan by Mervyn Peake

Salt by Adam Roberts
Mars Trilogy by Kim Stanley Robinson

Quicksilver by Neal Stephenson
No Present Like Time by Steph Swainston

One Star

Transition by Iain M. Banks

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