Earlier in the month I outlined some of my plans for At Boundary’s Edge as we head into the new year. With one notable exception, what I didn’t talk about in that article is the books I plan to read in 2023. If you’ve been following me these past four years, you’ll know that I have a grab-bag approach to reading. Whatever I want, whenever I want, and often very little plan to it. With the exception of my longer series readthroughs (Dune, Foundation, and the like) I tend to only plan my TBR one month at a time, if that. But as 2023 comes around the corner, there are some books I plan to focus on during the year. There’s a whole lot of ‘if’s, ‘when’s and ‘maybe’s floating over some of these, so if anyone fancies stepping in with some suggestions, I’m more than happy to hear them. Having said that, here are some of the books, series, and authors I aim to spend time with in the next twelve months.
The only work of Asher’s I have read is Dark Intelligence, which I found confusing and overly grimdark in its sensibilities. Well, that might be because it falls in the middle of a multi-series literary universe, and was written around the same time that Asher’s wife died. There’s a lot about the universe of the Polity that still intrigues me, plus their covers are absolutely gorgeous, so in 2023 I’m thinking of giving the series a second chance, hopefully with a better starting point this time around.
Baxter is one of the big names of British science fiction, sitting alongside Peter F. Hamilton and Alastair Reynolds. The other authors I have a very potted history with, but I have enjoyed everything of Baxter’s that I have read, be it a sequel to an H.G. Wells classic, or a short story collection. For some reason, I have never pursued his other works. That’s an oversight I intend to correct this year. Since I have a copy of Proxima sitting in my TBR stack as I type this, Baxter is a sure-fire read for 2023, and hopefully someone whose back catalogue I’ll be exploring in depth.
In the past two years, Ben Bova has skyrocketed to the upper echelons of my favourite authors list, but the books of his I have read have been odd ones picked up here and there. In 2023 I’m resolving to hunt down more of his Grand Tour series so that I can fill in the gaps between the books of his that I already own.
Orson Scott Card
I have seen the film adaptation of Ender’s Game, and there my knowledge of Orson Scott Card’s work begins and ends. A chance second-hand find infomrs me that there is an entire universe expanded from that novel, so rather than just going straight for thebig name classic, I’m going to approach this one from the edges. I have no great plans for a readthrough, but I am interested in seeing what all the fuss is about.
As I mentioned in my Ambitions & Goals article, the Halo franchise is going to be my next big readthrough for the blog. Having completed Halo: reach, I’ve got a really good feeling that I’m going to enjoy this series. I’m probably going to try and complete some more of the games before getting into the books, but we’ll have to see how strong my resolve is. Spoiler alert: It’s fragile.
H. Beam Piper
An author I have enjoyed for longer than I can remember, Piper is infuriatingly hard to get a hold of in the UK. I’ve resisted using online sources to get his works so far, but charity shops and used bookstores can only go so far, and I may soon have to resort to Ebay to find his works in print. Piper will prbably wait until I’ve wrapped up a few other series, but I definitely plan to get around to him before the end of 2023.
Star Trek: Deep Space Nine
I’ve completed my readthrough of the Enterprise relaunch, the Voyager relaunch, and all but a handful of crossover series, which means it’s time to wrap up those two massive names in TrekLit. I’ve stayed away from DS9 for a long while due to the prevalence of an author whose style I dislike, but as my post-Nemesis reading has progessed, there are questions I would like answered that can only be found in the DS9 relaunch.
Star Trek: The Next Generation
I don’t rate TNG as highly as most other Trek fans I know, so I never made it a priority to read the relaunch. That changes in 2023, because from the looks of things, the latter half of it looks like the sort of scientific adventure Star Trek excels at. A little less action, and a little more conversation please. It also sounds like this particular relaunch will be easier to dip in and out of than some other parts of the Litverse, so that will be a welcome treat.
Aside from a few books that I will likely never get my hands on, I am essentially up to date with my Black Library reading. That’s an odd feeling, but does mean I can focus on staying current with releases rather than having to bulk buy omnibuses and hunt down obscure editions. There will still be plenty of Warhammer 40,000 material for me to get through, however, and I look forward to doing just that.
I burned out hard on the Honor Harrington series, but managed to see the core novels through to the end. That was about two years ago, and now I find myself wanting to return to that universe. That means getting back into the co-authored works of Eric Flint, Timothy Zahn, and Thomas Pope. With the number of unread books less daunting than it once was, I have a renewed enthusiasm for the series. I just hope I can remember who is who.
So there you have it. A teaser of what I’ll be reading and reviewing in 2023. Plans change, of course, so don’t hold me to anything you read here. In addition to these plans, I’ll be continuing with my reeading of random book finds and current authors, plus a few special surprises here and there. 2023 isn’t far away at all, and I hope it holds happy reading for all of us.