To determine my pick for the Science Fiction category, I ran a series of Head-to-Head contests between the five titles nominated. While the comments below each of the contest below are short, you can check out the full reviews I wrote for each of the titles by clicking on the clinks of the title in the #Head2Head subject lines. Please note, that I did not write a review for Crosstalk as I did not finish listening to it (see below.)
#Head2Head #1: Star Wars: The Force Awakens vs The Dispatcher
While I appreciate the challenges that are involved in producing a Star Wars audiobook and the shear sexiness of a Star Wars title in general; The Dispatcher comes out ahead for its originality (story,) excellent narration, and clean production values.
Winner of Round #1: The Dispatcher
#Head2Head #2: The Dispatcher vs The Book of the Unnamed Midwife
Scalzi’s novella left me screaming for more; but Elison’s post-apocalyptic vision, while heavy with import, suffered from a surfeit of story.
Winner of Round #2: The Dispatcher
#Head2Head #3: The Dispatcher vs Sleeping Giants
The Dispatcher holds it own against Sleeping Giants! I found both stories intriguing and the audios well produced; but while I crave more Dispatcher adventures, I found myself okay with waiting for the sequel, Waking Giants.
Winner of Round #3: The Dispatcher
#Head2Head #4: The Dispatcher vs Crosstalk
Concept, story, and execution are perfect in The Dispatcher; but while there was a great concept going for Crosstalk, poor story/execution and narrator issues made it unbearable for me to listen to. I ended up bailing on Crosstalk.
Winner of Round #4: The Dispatcher
My pick for the 2017 Armchair Audies in the Science Fiction category:
OTHER: I receive no monies, goods, or services in exchange for reviewing the product and/or mentioning any of the persons or companies that are or may be implied in this post.