BSFA long-lists: Goodreads and LibraryThing stats

I’m glad to see the BSFA long-lists are out, always a fun start to one’s reading year (except that at present I am overwhelmed by Clarke submissions).

But these long-lists are long. 18 for Best Book for Younger Readers; 32 for Best Non-Fiction; 36 for Best Artwork; 68 for Best Novel (down from 74 last year); and a stonking 77 for Best Short Fiction. I have to wonder how useful any long-lists as long as this can really be. I also wonder to what extent such an open nominations process can be exploited for marketing purposes. There is still some desirable kudos to being a BSFA long-listed author, even if the barrier to achieving that status is rather low.

As I have done before, I’ve looked at the Goodreads and LibraryThing statistics for the two most relevant categories, Best Book for Younger Readers and Best Novel, ranked by the geometrical average of the number of Goodreads users who have rated each book, and the number of LibraryThing users who have recorded owning it.

For Best Book for Younger Readers, I have bolded the top five in each column. The only book to get all four numbers in bold is All That’s Left in the World, by Erik J. Brown.

 Goodreads LibraryThing
 ratersav ratingownersav rating 
Only A Monster, by Vanessa Len157073.914433.67
Her Majesty’s Royal Coven, by Juno Dawson79483.893773.78
Violet Made of Thorns, by Gina Chen91893.653044
All That’s Left in the World, by Erik J. Brown117204.31874.12
This Vicious Grace, by Emily Thiede64834.12254.11
Zachary Ying and the Dragon Emperor, by Xiran Jay Zhao23244.19894.22
The Kindred, by Alechia Dow12063.68634.17
Beasts of Ruin, by Ayana Gray8594.2594
Unraveller, by Frances Hardinge5644.22474.2
Illuminations, by T Kingfisher7214.19294.06
Mindwalker, by Kate Dylan5844.23344
Survive the Dome, by Kosoko Jackson6163.62304
Osmo Unknown and the Eightpenny Woods, by Catherynne M. Valente2334.36334.5
Secret of the Stormforest, by L.D. Lapinski2784.369
The Comet, by Joe Todd-Stanton1634.48114
Loki: A Bad God’s Guide to Taking The Blame, by Louie Stowell894.3664
Born Andromeda, by K.M. Watts253.6853
The Fox’s Tower, by Sam Thompson00

And here’s the Best Novel long-list, with the top quintile in each column in bold. Again only one book manages this in all four columns: Babel, by R. F. Kuang.

 Goodreads LibraryThing
 ratersav ratingownersav rating 
Sea of Tranquility, by Emily St. John Mandel1121064.1515734.07
Babel, by R. F. Kuang453304.3613104.24
The Cartographers, by Peng Shepherd425993.679383.52
Daughter of the Moon Goddess, by Sue Lynn Tan378404.188613.95
Upgrade, by Blake Crouch525603.845803.78
To Paradise, by Hanya Yanagihara275833.795363.86
Nettle & Bone, by T Kingfisher218934.246044.29
How High We Go in the Dark, by Sequoia Nagamatsu248533.895253.83
What Moves the Dead, by T. Kingfisher202603.984414.07
Lapvona, by Otessa Moshfegh222003.593253.36
The Book Eaters, by Sunyi Dean145683.724663.98
Amongst Our Weapons, by Ben Aaronovitch103844.353943.99
Sundial, by Catriona Ward96413.812413.86
Spear, by Nicola Griffith31964.142464.02
Eyes of the Void, by Adrian Tchaikovsky58874.221314.02
Stone Blind, by Natalie Haynes40244.031733.82
The Grief of Stones, by Katherine Addison32074.332124.16
Eversion, by Alistair Reynolds35654.041683.96
Ocean’s Echo, by Everina Maxwell27354.231423.91
Our Lady of Mysterious Ailments, by Tendai Huchu21153.971594.06
Leech, by Hiron Ennes22543.71243.57
Goliath, by Tochi Onyebuchi10943.311503.57
Time Shelter, by Georgi Gospodinov27124.08563.64
Light Years From Home, by Mike Chenn17973.57664.1
A Half-Built Garden, by Ruthanna Emrys8413.711203.4
The Spear Cuts Through Water, by Simon Jimenez10004.27964.21
Children of Memory, by Adrian Tchaikovsky16174.16574.58
The Moonday Letters, by Emma Itaranta11623.82693.63
The Path of Thorns, by Angela Slatter11624.09584.06
Stars and Bones, by Gareth Powell9743.7593.29
The Men, by Sandra Newman9743492.54
Under Fortunate Stars, by Ren Hutchings8434.01554.05
Braking Day, by Adam Oyebanji8544.02523.84
Venomous Lumpsucker, by Ned Beauman8103.88503.88
The Red Scholar’s Wake, by Aliette de Bodard4653.65604.18
Unraveller, by Frances Hardinge5644.22474.2
The Circus Infinite, by Khan Wong3933.62453.5
City of Last Chances, by Adrian Tchaikovsky3324.04414.25
The Immortality Thief, by Taran Hunt3724.23344
The This, by Adam Roberts2573.92453.9
Echoes of Eternity, by Aaron Dembski-Bowden6054.53155
Mischief Acts, by Zoe Gilbert2403.98323.75
Picard: Second Self, by Una McCormack2394.26175
Beyond the Burn Line, by Paul McAuley1453.66283.5
Flight of the Aphrodite, by Simon Morden1983.99163.83
Glitterati, by Oliver K. Langmead1443.73193.92
Plutoshine, by Lucy Kissick1124.1163.5
Expect Me Tomorrow, by Christopher Priest743.65234
A Fractured Infinity, by Nathan Tavares743.76153.5
Cold Water, by Dave Hutchinson654.37174.75
The Green Man’s Gift, by Juliet E. Mckenna1354.4564
HellSans, by Ever Dundas893.8483
Mage of Fools, by Eugen Bacon324.03223.22
Embertide, by Liz Williams484.4694.25
Jackdaw, by Tade Thompson474.115
In the Heart of Hidden Things, by Kit Whitfield434.214
The Way the Light Bends, by Lorraine Wilson274.4144
Resilient, by Allen Stroud234.174
Night Ivy, by E. D. E. Bell174.293
Celestial, by M. D. Lachlan213.192
The Coral Bones, by EJ Swift94.784
On the Brink, by R. B. Kelly44.755
Ocean of Stars, by John Dodd123.921
Empathy, by Hoa Pham141
It Doesn’t Have to Be This Way, by Alistair Mackay674.640
From Death to Dawn, by Chele Cook134.540
Cast Long Shadows, by Cat Hellisen163.880
Harpan’s Worlds, by Terry Jackman130

It is interesting to note that some of these books have had more nominators for the BSFA awards than they have registered owners on Goodreads or LibraryThing. Not pointing any fingers, but I think there may be a couple of cases of friends and family helping out here.