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100 Science Fiction Books You Just Have to Read

Discussion in 'Issues Around the World' started by ethics, Aug 16, 2004.

  1. ethics

    ethics Pomp-Dumpster Staff Member

    Not my list, but thought I'd share it. Actually, I agree with this one more than I've ever agreed with a list. Although, Science Fiction for me has to question, have the mind wander, even laugh at the paradox.

    1 Childhood's End Arthur C. Clarke
    2 Foundation Isaac Asimov
    3 Dune Frank Herbert
    4 The Man in the High Castle Philip K. Dick
    5 Starship Troopers Robert A. Heinlein
    6 Valis Philip K. Dick
    7 Frankenstein Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley
    8 Gateway Frederik Pohl
    9 Space Merchants Frederik Pohl
    10 Earth Abides George R. Stewart
    11 Cuckoo's Egg C.J. Cherryh
    12 Star Surgeon James White
    13 The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch Philip K. Dick
    14 Radix A. A. Attanasio
    15 2001: A Space Odyssey Arthur C. Clarke
    16 Ringworld Larry Niven
    17 A Case of Conscience James Blish
    18 Last and First Man Olaf Stapledon
    19 The Day of the Triffids John Wyndham
    20 Way Station Clifford D.
    21 More Than Human Theodore Sturgeon
    22 Gray Lensman E.E. "Doc" Smith
    23 The Gods Themselves Isaac Asimov
    24 The Left Hand of Darkness Ursula K. Le Guin
    25 Behold the Man Michael Moorcock

    The rest of the list here: http://listsofbests.com/list/29/

    I am only saddened that <i>Glory Season</i> didn't make it.
  2. Sierra Mike

    Sierra Mike The Dude Abides Staff Member

    Heh-heh, so good to see Berserker on the list...now only if Hammer's Slammers could make it!

    Also good to see one of my perennial faves, Startide Rising on deck, as well.

  3. joseftu

    joseftu ORIGINAL Pomp-Dumpster

    There are only three books on that list that I haven't read!

    Perhaps I should get a life?

    (I can excuse myself, because I teach Science Fiction every semester ;))

    No real argument with any of those, although (of course) they left out a lot of my favorites, and a big neglect of the recent British invasion--in fact, a big neglect of <b>anything</b> recent! (There doesn't seem to be anything after 2000)

    And I <b>certainly</b> wouldn't call <i>Alice in Wonderland</i> SF!
  4. Frodo Lives

    Frodo Lives Luke, I am NOT your father!

    I have only 3 books on that list that I have read. :happy:

    I guess it can't be that good of a list because I don't see even 1 Star Wars book. :haha:
  5. ShinyTop

    ShinyTop I know what is right or wrong!

    Totally agree, Joe. I hate the way most book stores have SF and Fantasy together. Arghhhhhhhhhhhh!
  6. IamZed

    IamZed ...

    There were about 20 I havent read. I have a mountain of SF books left even after the ex took her favorites. Havent been keeping up though, and its starting to show. I rerun stuff now. Last night it was the First Men in the Moon. Tonight Ill start on Dancers at the End of Time. Time to go out and buy a Hugo/Nebula collection and get caught back up on who is good now.
  7. joseftu

    joseftu ORIGINAL Pomp-Dumpster

  8. ShinyTop

    ShinyTop I know what is right or wrong!

    I guess you have posted it before but it just registerd that you are teaching SciFi. Has anybody told the NYT. Even those clowns should be willing to expose somebody being paid for teaching SciFi. I imagine the students are more willing than most to discuss it, too. What a rip off. Government double dippers have nothing on you.

  9. joseftu

    joseftu ORIGINAL Pomp-Dumpster

    That's nothing--I'm even working on a textbook! :)

    (And by the way, in my class, if you use the term "SciFi" instead of "SF," you get to see the teacher's angry face! <img src="http://socrates.bmcc.cuny.edu/jugoretz/angryfire.gif">)

    Seriously, a 1996 study identified over 400 colleges and universities which offer courses in SF. The idea that it's not a valid literary genre is rapidly fading--and the history and purposes of that idea make a fascinating subject with which to open the class.

    These days I generally teach the course online--so if any of you are interested in a 3-credit, upper level, literature elective, you're welcome to register (for the spring semester...the course is already full for the fall). ;)
  10. SixofNine

    SixofNine Jedi Sage Staff Member

    I love Downbelow Station by C.J. Cherryh - part of her Alliance/Union series. Good to see Ursula LeGuin on the list, and The Left Hand of Darkness is a great choice, but my personal choice is The Dispossessed (how might an anarchic society work? Read this book).

    It's also nice to see Greg Bear on the list, though I have several favorites above Blood Music, e.g., Eon and Darwin's Radio.

  11. Frodo Lives

    Frodo Lives Luke, I am NOT your father!

    I can't believe it has taken so long. As they (don't really know how they are) say 'fiction precedes reality', what is fiction today is fact tomorrow. The greats like H. G. Wells proved that fact, with fiction. :)

    Maybe we should change the name Science Fiction to Science Pre-Fact. :haha:
  12. ethics

    ethics Pomp-Dumpster Staff Member

    Jeez, you are like the only person I know who likes Cherryh. She is the only author that I have ALL of the books she has ever written.

    Cloud's Rider stuff was awesome too. Hellburner and Heavytime was outstanding Science Fiction.
  13. Steve

    Steve Is that it, then?

    Back in seventh grade, I wrote a great paper for my English class, contrasting the differences in the genre between "hard SF" (with rockets, robots, lots of technology, etc.) and "soft SF" (where the story was more about human interactions and the backdrop of SF was just used to help that exploration along). I got an "A+", my teacher was quite impressed, and I felt really good until about a week later, or so, I read an article in SF&F or Analog that was pretty much the same thing as my paper, only this one was written by Asimov or Heinlein, or one of those guys.

    So much for my "original" paper :)
  14. SixofNine

    SixofNine Jedi Sage Staff Member

    You're ahead of me if you've read all of the work of this prolific author. If you liked Hellburner and Heavy Time you must also like Merchanter's Luck, Rim Runners, Tripoint, and Finity's End.

    I have also read the Cyteen series (set in Union space), the first three or four from the Foreigner series, and almost all of the Chanur series. Love the Kif race from the latter series. Their idea of courtesy is to greet you with "Death to your enemies." :)


    <small>Edit: wish I could spell the first time around. </small>
  15. Frodo Lives

    Frodo Lives Luke, I am NOT your father!

    Here is a good SF novel you can read online for free:

    The Keepers of Forever.

    I highly recommend it to anyone. And it's free. ;) :)

    [WARNING: Some sexual content.]
  16. ethics

    ethics Pomp-Dumpster Staff Member


    The thing with Cherryh is I ADORE her writing. It's nothing like regular writing, it's a distinguished taste. It takes about a chapter to get in to the groove but when you do, it's a delicious treat.
  17. Steve

    Steve Is that it, then?

    Frodo, no offense, man, but I tried reading that. It was like reading "The DaVinci Code" or "Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil". The plot and storyline both seemed OK but the writing.....oy vey!
  18. Coot

    Coot Passed Away January 7, 2010

    Well, I see Frank Herbert on the list with Dune, but what was at least as good, if not better, was the trilogy that began with The Jesus Incident. It really does belong on the list, though I'm not sure who would have to come off ;)
  19. archidante

    archidante Banned

    You didn't list your very own bro

    Dante D'Anthony
    Tales from the Pandoran Age
  20. Jim Dunavant

    Jim Dunavant New Member

    The address of this novel is now The Keepers of Forever

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