Websites of Note

The interesting thing about Twitter is that I learn about so many websites I wouldn’t have otherwise known about. Today, before I post my review of The Republic of Thieves, I’m going to share a little love and point you in the direction of some blogs that don’t get the attention they deserve. There are a lot of us out there who fly below the radar, and all of the ones I’m listing today deserve to be firmly on your radar.

Please, check them out, put them on your feed, and enjoy.

Bibliotropic

This site is run by Ria Bridges, who is Canadian and says “aboot” instead of “about” (only one reason why I love her). She has also been recently conscripted to SF Signal. Though our reading tastes might be a little different, her reviews are always detailed, in depth, and never give anything away. I’ve read a lot of books because Ria has suggested them, or written great reviews about them. Occasionally she posts editorials as well, always heartfelt and worth reading.

Far Beyond Reality

Stefan is one of my favorite reviewers. Period. He writes for Tor.com and runs the Beyond Reality group on Goodreads. His site is a site I’ve been watching since he created it. His writing is wonderful, and our reading tastes are very similar. I use his reviews as inspiration for how I write my own.

Rob’s Blog o’ Stuff

Rob has also been recently conscripted by the SF Signal machine. He also writes over on SFFWorld, another fantastic website. Rob has a reading taste similar to my own, but is also one of my favorite. reviewers. ever. His reviews are long, deep, insightful, and rarely give any plot points away. If Rob loves it, I’m guaranteed to love it, too.

The Tattered Scroll

The Tattered Scroll is an interesting website that tends to post more ebook deals than reviews. When he does post reviews, they are always worth reading, but I always swing by this site to see what books are on sale, and where. Chances are, I wouldn’t find them on my own.

Walker of Worlds

“Hey, Sarah, I thought you were keeping this to less-known websites. I’ve heard of all of these. You suck at life.”

Yeah, pretty much. Whatever. Walker of Worlds posts some of the best content ever. Ever. Read it. READ IT. Incredible reviews of books that should be noticed by everyone on a fairly regular, if spaced out, basis. If it is loved over on Walker of Worlds, you’ll probably love it, too. And you’ll love the review as much as the book because that’s how it works over there. The reviews are just as fantastic as the books (usually) end up being.

52 Book Reviews 

This is one of my absolute favorite up-and-coming sights. Matt’s reviews are amazing, but my favorite part of his site are the round-table discussions. He has done two that I am aware of so far, with multiple authors in each. He isn’t afraid to really go for the meat of any topic without beating around the bush. You’ll love the reviews. You’ll be blown away by all of his other content. Watch this one. Matt is really going somewhere fast.

And yes, I’m jealous. I wish I was that clever.

Stefan’s Bookshelf

Stefan posts reviews, and he also posts editorials. He has some fantastic insights into the genre and really explores interesting topics in unique ways. His reviews are also great and he reads a wide variety of books. The best thing about Stefan? His enthusiasm is palpable in everything he writes. This guy really loves the genre. It’s impossible not to love it as much as he does when you browse through his site. He doesn’t fight for readers, or weigh into controversial crap just for ratings. No. Stefan is who he is and he does what he does and I love him about that. He stays true to his genre passion and it really makes me focus on my genre-roots, and appreciate what I love so much about the genre.

On Starships and Dragonwings

I kind of feel like a moron for not paying attention to this website sooner. Anya is the owner and editor of this site. She posts reviews, giveaways and various other things. Her reviews are unique, and I think a lot of people will love them because of their unique qualities. You see, instead of writing a long essay (like I do), Anya boils down each book into a list of Pros and Cons bullet points. You get a concise overview of each book in reading that will take you less than a million hours (like mine do). She posts on a regular basis and always has something fun going on along with her reviews.

Wm Henry Morris

This is another site I haven’t really noticed until last week. I’m not sure why, and I can’t figure out why other people don’t pay more attention to this one. Morris posts some fantastic content. It looks to be mostly editorials, but they are some of the best written, most thoughtful editorials out there. He often weighs in on topics that are big in the genre, or really explores something new and unique on his own. The posting is less frequent than the other sites I’ve listed, but when a post does go up, go read it. Very thoughtful, very well written stuff over here.

Fantasy Review Barn

This site is run by two people, Nathan (US) and Pauline (UK). Between the two of them, they cover pretty much every subgenre under the umbrella of Speculative Fiction. Great reviews, very detailed, and the wide variety of books covered will ensure that this site appeals to almost everyone. This is one of those rare review sites run by two different people that haven’t succumbed to the “hive mind” that some group-ran review sites fall prey to. Two independent voices with two different reading and reviewing styles. For all of that, their reviews are still excellent, in depth, and fun.

King of the Nerds

This site is a lot of fun and it has been around a long time. Great reviews, lots of wonderful insights, a wide variety of books covered and regular posting. Check it out. You won’t be disappointed.

Abhinav Jain

Abhinav writes content for two sites, The Founding Fields (a group website) as well as Sons of Corax. Our reading tastes are different. For example, he loves comics and I really can’t stand them. However, he has a passion for the genre and posts some of the most insightful editorials that pack a punch on a regular basis. Abhinav has also been responsible for a lot of the various ways I explore the genre and the books I read. His absolute lack of fear regarding anything controversial is also something that is refreshing. Though we disagree on some points, I absolutely love Abhinav and his content, wherever he puts it. Pay attention to him. He’s a great one.

Bastard Books

Under the radar? No. What I love about this site is how it is basically dedicated to UF, but ran by a man. How often do you see that? He loves urban fantasy, and his unique male perspective in a subgenre that seems like it is mostly female is refreshing (wow, Sarah, awesome sweeping generalization there…). Bastard (whatever the hell his real name is) truly loves urban fantasy, and has, despite my fighting, got me to read a lot of urban fantasy that I’ve loved, despite how hard I tried to hate it. He has also ot me to respect the subgenre more than I ever imagined I would. He posts great reviews (seriously, fantastic stuff), and wonderful interviews and regular author guest posts.

And then there are all of the other sites everyone has heard of, but I still visit all the time.

Little Red Reviewer
The Speculative Scotsman
A Dribble of Ink
Staffer’s Book Reviews
SF Signal
SFFWorld
Fantasy Book Critic
Nethspace
Civilian Reader

Are there some I missed? Yes, I guarantee it. So what websites should I be reading that I’m not reading?

20 Responses

  • Skiffy and Fanty and The Functional Nerds!

  • You mentioned under Abhinav Jain’s section you can’t stand comics. Any particular reason?

    • No, there is no real reason. I just can’t do it. I get about 1/2 page in and think “this sucks.” Not because it’s BAD but I think I get annoyed with pictures. That’s ridiculous, because they are so ARTISTIC and so many of them are so beautiful. I just can’t do it. It’s the same reason why I really can’t stand audiobooks, too. I get distracted by the voices and annoyed that they don’t sound the same as in my head. With comics, I get annoyed that the pictures aren’t the same as what I mentally visualize.

      I’m petty and ridiculous like that.

  • Thanks for including me with such great company!

  • Thanks for the shout-out, Sarah!! Glad to see that my writing has had some influence on your reading. Nothing undue I hope! 😀

  • I’ll have you know I pronounce it more like “aboat.” So there. :p

    Thanks for the shoutout, and for considering me even close to the same level as the rest of these people!

  • WHM

    I’m also very pleased to be included. And not to get all whatever, but I really like the way you approach reviews, Sarah. Because of you and many of the other names mentioned above, my want-to-read list keeps expanding.

    And just to expand on what I’m doing: I don’t really write book reviews, but when I read something I like and/or find thought-provoking, I try to find something interesting to say about it. Most of the time it’s something positive. Sometimes it’s something that I find problematic. I also write the occasional opinion piece* on something that’s going on in the field and the even more occasional piece of humor writing.

    *most of the time I don’t because it’s already been said better elsewhere, but sometimes I can’t keep my mouth shut.

  • Thanks for including me in this list of great blogs, Sarah!

    One suggestion: Nerds of a Feather (http://www.nerds-feather.com/), which posts some of the best SFF book reviews around.

    • Agreed. NF has great reviews.

      Nice list, Sarah, got some that I hadn’t heard of before on there.

  • helen

    http://www.theeloquentpage.co.uk/ has some of my favourite reviews

  • Oh joyful! We made the list! Thank you much.
    And you have good taste, I already had four of those on my bloglovin feed.

  • Thanks Sarah! It means a lot that at least one person out there is actually reading my stuff, and what you have to say about it means even more. And I’m in great company too 🙂

  • Sarah,

    Thanks for listing me among such esteemed company, and the kind words! Also, thanks for introducing me to these sites. I’ll be adding them to my daily feed.

    Great sites, everyone!

  • Just added quite a few things to my feedly. Thanks. 🙂

  • <3!!! Thanks so much for including me in this list! Seriously made my week 😀 (Also, as much as I love being linked twice, Fantasy Review Barn's link is to oS&D 😉

  • This is a pretty badass list. Some faves and some new ones to explore. One of my favorites that’s not in this list is Stainless Steel Droppings.

    I also struggle with comics. I never know who is supposed to be talking and I always feel like I’m reading them wrong. It’s my personal issue and not a reflection in the medium.

  • Matt

    Such a great list. I am literally that person who you wrote “Hey, Sarah, I thought you were keeping this to less-known websites. I’ve heard of all of these. You suck at life” for. The second half of this list has some real gems I can’t wait to explore. Thank you!

    • I hope you like ’em! There are some great websites on this list and I’m thrilled to direct more traffic to them.

  • Danny

    Nice list! Thanks for all the info.

    Just an FYI, the link to Fantasy Review Barn actually goes to On Starships and Dragonwings.

    Cheers!

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