The final votes have been tallied and the winners announced! So, how much crow am I eating from my predictions? Let’s see…
Note: All cover images taken from Goodreads pages, individually linked below.
My prediction: Landline by Rainbow Rowell. Popular appeal and well-written, with plenty of press earlier in the year to garner attention voting.
Winner: Landline by Rainbow Rowell. I was genuinely happy to see this when I opened the app on my phone this morning. This isn’t even my favorite Rowell book – Eleanor & Park takes that spot – but it’s a well-deserved victory for a talented author. Congrats!
Mystery & Thriller
My prediction: The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith or Mr. Mercedes by Stephen King. Both authors pull big numbers, and Robert Galbraith (aka J.K. Rowling) has pulled an upset before. The Casual Vacancy didn’t have a high enough rating to garner an opening round nomination, but ended up winning the 2012 Best Fiction Award.
Winner: Mr. Mercedes by Stephen King. We’re not talking “score one for the little guy” here. This is an established author with an active fan base. No surprise, but no real thrill, either.
My prediction: The Magician’s Land by Lev Grossman. Again, popular appeal and great publicity earlier in the year make this one an obvious pick in my mind…
Winner: The Book of Life by Deborah Harkness. So not only did this one win, it did so by a huge margin. I’m glad to see Patrick Rothfuss was up there – yay! – but I’m still thrown off by the Harkness victory over Grossman. I mean, come on. It seemed like positive press for The Magician’s Land overshadowed the very fact that The Book of Life was on the shelves. Ugh.
My prediction: California by Edan Lepucki. See: her personality, and also Colbert.
Winner: The Martian by Andy Weir. I’m actually really happy about this – I started the audiobook last week and I love this book. It had some pretty good press earlier in the year. Since I don’t read a ton of Sci Fi, I’m not sure if this is an unexpected victory. Either way, I’m loving this book and glad to see it win.
My prediction: The Girl with All the Gifts by M.R. Carey. It’s been on a lot of reading rec lists on multiple websites/blogs I follow, many of which have little in common except, it turns out, this book.
Winner: Prince Lestat by Anne Rice. For all the reasons I listed for Robert Galbraith and Stephen King, I should have predicted this one. I take some comfort in knowing that the winner beat out my prediction by about 2100 votes. I was close, dang it.
History & Biography
My prediction: I’m going with In the Kingdom of Ice: The Grand and Terrible Polar Journey of the USS Jeannette by Hampton Sides for the win on this one. Purely a numbers game – I actually checked out how many people rated each of the finalists and the average scores for this category, because I just don’t know, guys.
Winner: The Romanov Sisters: The Lost Lives of the Daughters of Nicholas and Alexandra by Helen Rappaport. Don’t bet against Anastasia, y’all.
Graphic Novels & Comics
My prediction: Saga by Brian K. Vaughan (writer) and Fiona Staples (artist). It is the graphic novel right now, so anything else would be a massive upset.
Winner: Serenity: Leaves on the Wind by Zack Whedon, Georges Jeanty (Penciller), Fabio Moon (Artist). I get it, we love Whedon and Firefly was one of the best TV shows ever. I want to give this is a shot, but I think I’m just being a Saga snob.
Reminder: The following categories were not included as my interest is limited (or nonexistent this year): Historical Fiction, Romance, Humor, Nonfiction, Memoir & Autobiography, Business Books, Food & Cookbooks, Poetry, Debut Goodreads Author, Young Adult Fiction, Young Adult Fantasy & Science Fiction, Middle Grade & Children’s, Picture Books.
What did you think of the winners? Drop a note in the comments!