Thursday, December 20, 2012

The Rainbow Reader Awards - The Very Best of 2012

Tomorrow is December 21, 2012—the date popularly regarded as the end-time of a 5,125-year-long cycle in the Mesoamerican Long Count calendar.  While Mayan scholars and crackpot pseudo-religious prognosticators differ on their learned interpretations of its significance, they all agree that it is a time in which transformative or cataclysmic events will occur.

Coincidentally, it’s also the day the first of my holiday guests begins arriving….

So, in an effort to clear my calendar such that I may properly get “in the holiday spirit” (i.e., ebrius funditus,) I hereby declare:

Yea verily, another year is officially gearing down, flipping on it’s bright yellow turn signal, and aiming its scrunched up little nose towards the exit ramp for Auld Lang Syne.

And as the year careens around the late December cloverleaf of festivities, I want to take you back through The Rainbow Reader reviews, and bestow the Very Best of 2012 Awards.

However, before we jump into the good stuff, I want to mention that in the last twelve months, I had the honor and privilege of reviewing 25 books; and was fortunate enough to post Guest Reviews from four amazing and talented authors – Kate Christie, Susan X. MeagherBarrett, and Ann McMan.  Additionally, fellow reviewer, Cat from Good Lesbian Books, stopped by to post her thoughts on one of her favorite pieces of historic lesbian fiction. And, last but not least, avid reader and budding humorist, Michelle Brooks donned her sparkly peep toe slingback Louboutin’s and took TRR out for a quick spin around the block.

Not a bad run for a twitchy little dyke and her super cool partners in crime, eh?

But seriously, as a reviewer, my most sacrosanct goal is to cover the full spectrum of lesbian literature, such that authors have an expanding platform to showcase their work, and readers can consistently find books and stories that they love.  To that end, in 2012 TRR took on a few mainstream books, a comic book, a couple of frisky whodunits, an award-winning blog opera, and a handful of humor, romance, erotica, social justice, and period works of fiction.

Heck, I even reviewed books about a zombie apocalypse, sorority girl vampires, and a pack of post-menopausal werewolves just to cover all the Lesfic bases.

And, much as I did last year, I want to extend special and sincere thanks to each and every one of my Victims (i.e., the brave and valiant authors) for having the guts, grit, and determination to make your work available.  It takes an amazing amount of talent to write a book, and it takes a constitution of steel to voluntarily become vulnerable to a world of readers and reviewers, and our myriad, sketchy opinions.   

I also want to thank you, The Readers, for stopping by to read my reviews.  Many of you have left comments on this blog, which I appreciate.  Many others have sent me emails or contacted me on Facebook, and I want to thank each of you for letting me know what you think. Well, except maybe for that one reader who hijacked one of my social media sites, questioned my ethics and credentials, and referred to me as (lower case) “the blogger”—that was a wee bit of an exaggerated response and it felt a skosh too personal.

But, them's the breaks in the glamorous world of Lesbian Literature.

So, with no further ado, I present The Rainbow Reader’s Very Best of 2012 Awards 

Book Title
After the Night
Rachel Dax
Self Published
Ida Lupino Award for Best Women’s Prison Romance of 2012
Ann McMan
Stanley Tools Award for Most Innovative Use of a Pry Bar in Literature
Almost Heaven
Susan X. Meagher
Brisk Press
Hazel Dickens Award for the Plot Advancing Use of Satellite Dishes in Mountaintop Literature
J.H. Williams III, Greg Rucka, W. Haden Blackman
D.C. Comics
Peppermint Patty Award for Excellence by a Lesbian Comic Book Character
Beebo Brinker
Ann Bannon
Gold Medal Books Naiad Press
Cleis Press
Gale Wilhelm Award for Near Miss Happy Endings in Period Pulp Fiction
Being the Steel Drummer
Liz Bradbury
Boudica Publishing
TRR Special Award for Use of “Shall” as an Auxiliary Verb in a Bondage Scene
Better Off Red
Rebekah Weatherspoon
Bold Strokes Books
Victoria’s Secret Award for Best Use of Moist Lace Panties
Camptown Ladies
Mari SanGiovanni
Bywater Books
Sholem Aleichem Award for Richest Rooftop Dialogue in Lesbian Fiction
Carry the One
Carol Anshaw
Simon & Schuster
TRR Special Award for Innovative Use of Elementary Mathematical Concepts in Mainstream Literature
Clara’s Story
Doreen Perrine
Bedazzled Ink
Lesbian Psychiatric Association (LPA) Award for Best Therapist Named Gary in a Lesbian Romance
Come and Go
Lee Harlem Robinson
Self Published
International Lesbian Temperance Union Award for Blog Opera Excellence in The City That Opium Built
Eat Your Heart Out
Dayna Ingram
TRR Special Award for Pioneering Use of a Cheating Ex-Stripper Girlfriend-Cum-Gun-Wielding Warrior Babe in a Zombie Apocalypse
Everything Pales in Comparison
Rebecca Swartz
Bella Books
Thomas Nashe Award for Best Use of the Red Herring Plot Device in a Romantic Thriller, Eh?
Faithful Service, Silent Hearts
Lynette Mae
Regal Crest
Tyne Daley Award for Best Tough & Chewy Butch with a .50 Caliber, Fully Automatic Rifle Loaded with Armor-Piercing-Incendiary-Tracer Ammo
Hidden Truths
L-Book e-Publisher
Bureau of Labor Statistics Award for the Highest Concentration of Lesbyterians Per Square Mile in 19th Century Oregon
In One Person
John Irving
Simon & Schuster
TRR Special Award for Softest Breasts on a Transgendered Librarian
L World
Taryn Rose
Ravenous Romance
Readers Award for Most Vagina Euphemisms in a 300 Page Book—Ever
Open Water
Pol Robinson
Bella Books
2012 Oolala Award for Use of “Repechage,” the Sexiest Word in All of Lesbian Fiction
Oranges and Lemons
Liz Bugg
Insomniac Press
Galdys Mitchell Award for Best Smokin’ Hot Love Interest with a Sketchy Past and Tantalizingly Firm Breasts
Clare Ashton
Self Published
Praelatura Sanctae Crucis et Operis Dei Award for Most Effective Use of Self-Flagellation in a Modern Gothic Romance
Piper’s Someday
Ruth Perkinson
Spinster’s Ink
TRR Top Dog of 2012—Awarded Posthumously to River the Amazing Tripod
KG MacGregor
Bella Books
2012 Walk The Talk Award for a Happy Ending with a Flashing Neon Caveat
Sarah, Son of God
Justine Saracen
Bold Strokes Books
Vasily Zvyozdochkin Award for Best Gender Bending Nested Thriller of 2012
Seminal Murder
Mary Vermillion
Regal Crest
TRR Special Award for Ballsiest Use of Semen as a Main Character in Lesbian Fiction
Silver Moon
Catherine Lundoff
Lethe Press
Maude Findlay Award for Best Ever Menopausal Storyline in Lesbian Fiction
Regal Crest
Ain't No Mountain High Enough Award for Greatest Incidence of Emotional Demons in Dramatic Fiction Featuring a Car Wash
The Girl’s Club
Sally Bellrose
Bywater Books
Barbara Barrie Award for use of “The Dreaded Bowel Disease” as a Non-Speaking Main Character
The Indelible Heart
Marianne K. Martin
Bywater Books
Pittmann Puckett Award for Addressing Social Conscience in Lesbian Fiction
The Sea of Light
Jennifer Levin
Plume Books
Esther Williams Award for Multiple Ah-Ha Moments In and Out of the Pool
The Way
Kristen Wolf
Crown Publishing
Orlando Award for Intense Consideration of Nature and Gender Roles
Touch Me Gently
D. Jackson Leigh
Bold Strokes Books
Charles Francis Xavier Award for the Promethean Use of Exploding Light Bulbs During Hot Lesbian Sex in a Southern Novel

Well, that's it for TRR in 2012—here’s wishing each and every one of you a safe, happy, healthy, and festive holiday season, and a 2013 full of joy, love, and wonder!

And, as always, thanks for stopping by The Rainbow Reader.