Best of 2007
Sandra Boynton: Your Personal Penguin. Workman Publishing, 2006, 0761143726. Now, lots of other penguins seem to be fine // In a universe of nothing but ice. // But if I could be yours, and you could be mine, // Our cozy little world would be twice as nice. // I want to be Your Personal Penguin.
Stephen J. Ceci and Wendy M. Williams (eds): Why Aren’t More Women in Science? American Psychological Association, 2006, 159147485X. Chapters written by leading researchers on both sides of the nature vs. nurture debate. Dense and dry, but fascinating.
Frances Hardinge: Fly By Night. Harper-Collins, 2006, 0060876271. An orphan named Mosca and her not-really-very-tame attack goose get caught up in a revolutionary plot; delivers the heft and page-turning pleasure Pullman’s Dark Materials trilogy eventually failed to. Margo Lanagan: Black Juice. Eos, 2006, 0060743921. The setting of these graceful, disturbing stories is never quite our world, but never quite not.
Scott Lynch: The Lies of Locke Lamora. Spectra, 2007, 055358894X. An orphan becomes a criminal mastermind, but at a price—pure swashbuckling fun.
Michael Nygard: Release It! Pragmatic Bookshelf, 2007, 0978739213. It could equally well have been called, “how to make enterprise-scale applications work in the real world.”
Ellen Ullman: Close to the Machine. City Lights, 1997, 0872863328. As the dot-com wave swelled towards crest and collapse, Ullman had to decide whether to ride it or let it slip by. An engaging phase-of-life memoir.