Some interesting titles on this list: I’ve only read one of them, but intend to look up the others. There’s a little bit of wrestling with genre definitions in the news article that accompanies the list:
“It’s a very strong selection and quite varied, reflecting science fiction publishing in this country,” said chair of judges Paul Billinger. “There are novels from people well-known in the genre â€“ MiÃ©ville, Robinson and Roberts â€“ but what they have written is not perhaps standard SF; they don’t have space ships, but these books are clearly SF.”
Space ships? I’m surprised Mr. Billinger hasn’t come across Orson Scott Card’s way better definition: science fiction has rivets, fantasy has trees. (In other words, science fiction explains how things work in terms of the scientific principles that govern the world we live in; fantasy doesn’t.)
In any case, these tales apparently all have either rivets or trees (although Publishers Weekly called The City & The City “barely speculative,” which means it was pushing the genre boundaries particularly hard). Here’s the list:
Spirit by Gwyneth Jones (that’s the U.K. edition; I’m not finding an American edition)
The City & The City by China MiÃ©ville
Yellow Blue Tibia by Adam Roberts
Galileo’s Dream by Kim Stanley Robinson
Far North by Marcel Theroux
Retribution Falls by Chris Wooding
I started reading Galileo’s Dream but I just couldn’t get into it. I have a love / hate relationship with Kim Stanley Robinson though – I loved his Mars series and haven’t been able to read anything else!
I prefer Card’s definition too. For example, I would put several of Michael Crieghton’s books into science fiction (Spere, Prey, maybe even Timeline).