What is this list?
This is the 2010 Westeros.org Book List! It is a list of books generated from the results of a vote on the westeros.org forums, in which voters were asked to supply a list of their twenty favourite “genre” books – the genre in question being the one based on “science fiction” and “fantasy”, although no strict limits were placed on content.
This should not be viewed as, per se, a “greatest F&SF books of all time” list. I don’t think it’s possible to arrive at one of those through a popular vote with diverse voters (there were nearly 100 ballots submitted), as the range of books read by different voters will be so unhomogenous that real comparison is impossible.
What CAN be created from a popular vote is a recommendations list; as a result, the intention has been to create not a “correct” list but a “diverse” or “inclusive” list – every reader from the same demographic as the voters should find books here worth reading and more than worth reading, and every book here should be worth reading for at least one prospective reader. Nobody is likely to adore every book on this list, but hopefully everybody might adore something.
There are three lists presented here: a Greats List, a 21st Century List, and a Main List. The Main List contains 101 genre works published in or prior to 2000; the Greats List is a subset of that list (the same books reoccur in the Main List); the 21st Century List is a short list containing books published in 2001 or later.