New reader: where to start?

A new reader wonders where the best place to start reading my fiction is:

I’ve been enjoying your blog, and wanted to know – what would be the best book of yours for a new reader to start with? I’m a big sci-fi fan, but haven’t actually read your fiction yet. If it matters, my tastes are a bit older – Orson Scott Card, William Gibson, Arthur C. Clarke, etc. Terry Brooks and Tolkien when it comes to fantasy. Might be good to have a “new reader” link.

My first instinct is to say QM: AMP for those who lean SF and AMB, followed by ATOB, for those who lean fantasy. But I also think the author is among the least reliable authorities in this regard, so I’ll leave it up to the Ilk to sort it out in the comments. If you all can reach a consensus, I’ll post it here and create a New Reader link in the sidebar.

I’m going to go out on a limb and assume no one thinks that either REBEL MOON or THE RETURN OF THE GREAT DEPRESSION is the optimal starting point.

And on the Sad Puppy front, Mad Genius Dave Freer just asks the question that I did about the Toad of (formerly) Tor, only he asks it about the Guardian as well.

The chances of a ‘hit’ piece, intended to denigrate, on an American populist author with little impact on his British scene, in a publication that tends to Ahrt, are slim. The chance of it happening the very day that the Hugo Nomination shortlist is released, targeting an audience who might possibly go to LonCon, but probably would not have heard of Larry Correia? In other words, to poison minds well before they saw their voter packets…

The chance that this happened purely by accident – about the same as a fully armed nuclear missile turning into a Sperm whale a few seconds before impact.

Let’s get to a second fact. Just the facts. A year later, TNH launched a furious tirade on her blog, ‘Making Light’… attacking the Sad Puppies for sweeping the Hugo Noms. Threatening to bring down retribution for being nominated. Now coming from such a powerful person in Traditional Publishing, and one with… shall we say wide influence (the links are… telling) this is fairly serious bullying. Abuse of power.

But the important thing is WHEN IT HAPPENED.

It happened BEFORE the embargo was lifted.

These facts lead inexorably to a question so simple and so obvious I can’t see how anyone can miss it asking it:


I think this pair of tweets from 2013 will explain a lot. Notice the connection between David Barnett, John Scalzi, and Damien Walter. And then notice who publishes David Barnett. Still dubious about a quiet circle of conspiracy centered around Tor Books?