The Guardian, on the last day of the last year, put up a list of books that one can look forward to this year. Most of it is pretty high-brow stuff, fiction and non-fiction both included. I doubt if I'll pick much (or anything at all) from Guardian's list.
One book, this year, that I am definitely looking forward to, as must be a large number of crazy muggles, is the seventh and final Harry Potter book. Rowling is reportedly still working on the book titled Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows but it is expected to be in the bookshops by July 2007. Fans will have to wait till then to find out if Harry Potter is bumped off (Don't fret, it's nothing to worry about).
Fans of fantasy fiction however don't have to wait till July 2007 to get their fix. Sometime before the marketing machine behind the final Potter book goes into overdrive, the third book of the very impressive Percy Jackson and the Olympians series will be available. The Titan's Curse, is scheduled for release on May 1, 2007 and I am eagerly looking forward to reading it (I am probably more eager for this book than I am for the final Potter). As I mentioned it here, the basic premise of the Percy Jackson books, because it is so much different from the usual fantasy fare, makes the books refreshing and interesting and I feel in Percy Jackson, both the books and the character, there are the makings of a classic in the fantasy genre. You can download the first chapter of The Titan's Curse as read by the author here.
There are also rumors that the third and final book of Christopher Paolini's Inheritance Trilogy will be published this year. Readers will remember that Book II of the series, Eldest, ends with an ominous twist that promises a dangerous journey into the heart of King Galbatorix's domain this time for a rescue and for revenge. And there are many questions to be answered: Who will be the third dragon rider? How will that change the power equations in Alagaësia? What is Eragon's Inheritance? Definitely a book to look forward to.
I am also hoping Samit Basu, this year, will come out with the final volume of The Gameworld Trilogy. The Simoqin Prophecies and The Manticore's Secret count amongst the best of what I have read in SF&F. And I love Basu's irreverent and subversive take on the genre and its conventions. In spirit I would compare Basu's books to the Percy Jackson series — very, very clever. But it's the kind of cleverness that makes you smile and grin in delight. Awesomely enjoyable and I confess, of all the books listed here, the one I most definitely don't want to miss. I fervently hope that the book is published this year.
2007 should be a good year for fans of fantasy fiction.
Which book are you waiting for?