Best First Novel 1 Tea with the Black Dragon R. A. MacAvoy This was a charming first novel about a man who is really a dragon and how he helps a woman look for her missing daughter in then-modern day America. I think that MacAvoy had a novella published last year but there was a long dry spell between that and the previously published work, WINTER OF THE WOLF (1993). 2 The Blackcollar Timothy Zahn If I read this, I forgot it. Zahn is prolific and successful to this day. 3 A Rumor of Angels Marjorie B. Kellogg I did not read this. Kellogg doesn't seem to have been particularly prolific but she is still being published. 4 King's Blood Four Sheri S. Tepper One of a vast number of Tepper books that I have not read. My impression is that Tepper's core market is not male SF readers like myself. There are many people who can be described as "not a male SF reader like James Nicoll" and so Tepper has enjoyed at least a quarter centuy of success to date. 5 Starrigger John DeChancie When humans reach Pluto, they discover something like a Tipler device  on its surface, left there by advanced aliens who knew how to handle all of the technical issues that you will spot after you look at the article I linked to. Our hero is an interstellar trucker who learns that a lot of nasty people believe that he has a map to the interstellar road system. This was good dumb fun (the trucker really is literally a trucker) but the second book in the series ends on an infuriating cliffhanger. His comic fantasy never did anything for me so while he has lots of books out, I have only read a few of them. His most recent material appears to be Witchblade tie-ins. Ah, well, better that than TAROT: WITCH OF THE BLACK ROSE tie-ins (Don't google that from work). 1: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tipler_device 6 The Shadow of the Ship Robert Wilfred Franson This was an odd book about a human starfarer marooned on an alien world whose inhabitants have a low tech method for traversing interstellar distances. He joins a caravan travelling from planet to planet. If he ever had a second SF novel, I did not see it. 7 Harpy's Flight Megan Lindholm I did not read this. My impression is that Lindholm's fiction did not sell all that well and that she was forced to rebrand herself as Robin Hobb. I prefer her Lindholm books. 8 Anvil of the Heart Bruce T. Holmes Is this the one where muscular but not necessarily all that bright humans overcome their inhumanly intelligent post-human offspring? As far as I know, Holmes is a successful musician but this was his only SF novel. 9 The Forest of App Gloria Rand Dank I did not read this. Dank does not appear to have had any other books published 10 Ratha's Creature Clare Bell I also did not read this. Bell's career as an SF writer is on-going.
- Old Tea Leaf Reviews 4: 1984 Locus Poll Best First Novel
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