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Sci-Fi'zzzzz - 2/8/2007 11:22:24 PM   
Doctor Manhattan


Posts: 341
Joined: 25/9/2006
From: Mars
Hihihihihihihihihihihihi. In recent weeks I've been dipping my toes into Sci-Fi and was wondering what to read next. I recently read Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep and A Scanner Darkly, simply because I enjoyed the movie adaptations. Safe to say I enjoyed both although I've been told that starting with Philip K Dick might be throwing myself in at the deep end. I've heard Issac Assimov and Aurthur C. Clarke are good but I don't know where to start. Not being made of money I can't order everything that looks good on amazon! Suggest some books kids and I'll take it upon your good authority that they're pleasant. Thaaaaaaanksthanksthanksssss.

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RE: Sci-Fi'zzzzz - 3/8/2007 12:05:54 AM   
clownfoot


Posts: 7914
Joined: 26/9/2005
From: The ickle town of Fuck, Austria
Three of my favourites would be Fahrenheit 451, I Am Legend and The Chrysalids. Like all good sci-fi they present a world not too disimilar from the current reality, albeit slightly twisted into a hellishly dystopian vision. You'll recognise elements of modern society in there, but the way such elements are used makes for some chilling reading. Indeed the way aspects of the bible are mis-interpreted by the people of Waknock in The Chysalids simply mirrors something very much apparent in the world today, making the themes somewhat universal. Much better than a fantastical escapist world/space opera in my mind. 

I'd start with I Am Legend - Vampires and the last man alive? Fantastic stuff.   

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RE: Sci-Fi'zzzzz - 3/8/2007 12:27:01 AM   
Doctor Manhattan


Posts: 341
Joined: 25/9/2006
From: Mars
Cool cool, thanks. I'm hitting up amazon as we speak!

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Post #: 3
RE: Sci-Fi'zzzzz - 3/8/2007 12:51:54 AM   
bozo


Posts: 2507
Joined: 1/11/2006
From: HM Prison Slade
John Wyndham is perfect for beginners - The Chrysalids, The Web, The Secret People, The Kraken Wakes - all classics. Perhaps early Chrichton is also a good place to start - The Andromeda Strain, Sphere. Then you go to Asimov and Clarke. I'd skip Bradbury if I were you. But your final stop should be Dan Simmons - he is the king of sci-fi at the moment.

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RE: Sci-Fi'zzzzz - 3/8/2007 12:52:53 AM   
bozo


Posts: 2507
Joined: 1/11/2006
From: HM Prison Slade
quote:

ORIGINAL: clownfoot

Three of my favourites would be Fahrenheit 451, I Am Legend and The Chrysalids. Like all good sci-fi they present a world not too disimilar from the current reality, albeit slightly twisted into a hellishly dystopian vision. You'll recognise elements of modern society in there, but the way such elements are used makes for some chilling reading. Indeed the way aspects of the bible are mis-interpreted by the people of Waknock in The Chysalids simply mirrors something very much apparent in the world today, making the themes somewhat universal. Much better than a fantastical escapist world/space opera in my mind. 

I'd start with I Am Legend - Vampires and the last man alive? Fantastic stuff.   


Great book, hardly sci-fi.

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Post #: 5
RE: Sci-Fi'zzzzz - 3/8/2007 12:57:19 AM   
Doctor Manhattan


Posts: 341
Joined: 25/9/2006
From: Mars
Ah thanks guys. More posts! I'm now compiling a list of sci-fi books to read.

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Post #: 6
RE: Sci-Fi'zzzzz - 3/8/2007 3:04:18 AM   
clownfoot


Posts: 7914
Joined: 26/9/2005
From: The ickle town of Fuck, Austria
quote:

ORIGINAL: bozo

quote:

ORIGINAL: clownfoot

Three of my favourites would be Fahrenheit 451, I Am Legend and The Chrysalids. Like all good sci-fi they present a world not too disimilar from the current reality, albeit slightly twisted into a hellishly dystopian vision. You'll recognise elements of modern society in there, but the way such elements are used makes for some chilling reading. Indeed the way aspects of the bible are mis-interpreted by the people of Waknock in The Chysalids simply mirrors something very much apparent in the world today, making the themes somewhat universal. Much better than a fantastical escapist world/space opera in my mind. 

I'd start with I Am Legend - Vampires and the last man alive? Fantastic stuff.   


Great book, hardly sci-fi.


Hmm, volume 2 of the SF Masterworks would disagree with you...

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Post #: 7
RE: Sci-Fi'zzzzz - 3/8/2007 3:25:08 AM   
Lazarus munkey


Posts: 1650
Joined: 20/3/2006
From: out of nowhere
quote:

ORIGINAL: bozo

John Wyndham is perfect for beginners - The Chrysalids, The Web, The Secret People, The Kraken Wakes - all classics. Perhaps early Chrichton is also a good place to start - The Andromeda Strain, Sphere. Then you go to Asimov and Clarke. I'd skip Bradbury if I were you. But your final stop should be Dan Simmons - he is the king of sci-fi at the moment.


Excellent book! As are: War Of The Worlds and Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency.

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Post #: 8
RE: Sci-Fi'zzzzz - 3/8/2007 7:17:52 AM   
Lydia_H


Posts: 3799
Joined: 26/11/2006
I don't really read Sci-Fi but check out 'Roadside Picnic' by Arkady and Boris Strugatsky ... I haven't read it  Although I've wanted to for ages. Tarkovsky's incredible film 'Stalker' was based on this story, and next year there will be a full film adaptation I think.

If you read it let me know if it's any good Has anyone else read it?



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RE: Sci-Fi'zzzzz - 3/8/2007 8:45:41 AM   
ilovebeerme


Posts: 4531
Joined: 30/9/2005
From: Magic Beans

I'd start with Consider Phlebas by Ian M Banks. Then maybe go for the Nights Dawn trilogy by Peter F hamilton (stars with The Reality Dysfunction), and then either the Hyperion cantos by Dan Simmons or the Mars trilogy by Kim Stanley Robinson. All classic sci-fi, plenty to keep you going and all fantastic.


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RE: Sci-Fi'zzzzz - 3/8/2007 9:37:31 AM   
MOTH

 

Posts: 3479
Joined: 3/10/2005
From: Sittin' on the dock of the bay
Try these on for size - all classic sci-fi with a range of themes and ideas

The Day of the Triffids - John Wyndham
The Forever War - Joe Haldeman
The Stars My Destination - Alfred Bester
Rendezvous with Rama - Arthur C Clarke
Foundation - Isaac Asimov
Brave New World - Aldous Huxley
Earth Abides - George R Stewart
Ender's Game - Orson Scott Card

If none of these catch your fancy check out winners of the Hugo and Nebula awards as well as the SF Masterworks Series.

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Post #: 11
RE: Sci-Fi'zzzzz - 3/8/2007 9:49:30 AM   
homersimpson_esq


Posts: 20117
Joined: 30/9/2005
From: Springfield
Agree with the Consider Phlebas suggestion - any Iain M. Banks.
Once you've read a few, you'll be ready for the Gap Series by Stephen Donaldson. A fantastic 5 book series that is intricate, involved, frightening, and fascinating. The first book is short and a tougher read than the rest - if you read that one, you'll be fine.
If you like the Gap series, I'd recommened the Chronicles of Thomas Covenant - the finest realised fantasy world since Lord of the Rings. His word usage is hypnotic.


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RE: Sci-Fi'zzzzz - 3/8/2007 10:13:40 AM   
ilovebeerme


Posts: 4531
Joined: 30/9/2005
From: Magic Beans

Dying Earth by Jack Vance is also great and the Foundation series is very good, although the last couple weren't as good.

Of course there is always Dune, but everybody, sci-fi fan or not, should read that because it's just superb.


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RE: Sci-Fi'zzzzz - 3/8/2007 10:40:45 AM   
Spartacus

 

Posts: 1593
Joined: 8/11/2005
From: Middle England
quote:

ORIGINAL: ilovebeerme


I'd start with Consider Phlebas by Ian M Banks. Then maybe go for the Nights Dawn trilogy by Peter F hamilton (stars with The Reality Dysfunction), and then either the Hyperion cantos by Dan Simmons or the Mars trilogy by Kim Stanley Robinson. All classic sci-fi, plenty to keep you going and all fantastic.



As much as I love this series, dear God it's a push to get into the first book.

You could also check out the other 2 series by Hamilton, There's the Greg Mandel series and the commenwealth series (Misspent Youth, Pandora's Star and Judas Unchained)


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Post #: 14
RE: Sci-Fi'zzzzz - 3/8/2007 12:11:30 PM   
bozo


Posts: 2507
Joined: 1/11/2006
From: HM Prison Slade
quote:

ORIGINAL: Lydia_H

I don't really read Sci-Fi but check out 'Roadside Picnic' by Arkady and Boris Strugatsky ... I haven't read it  Although I've wanted to for ages. Tarkovsky's incredible film 'Stalker' was based on this story, and next year there will be a full film adaptation I think.

If you read it let me know if it's any good Has anyone else read it?




I have, and it's one of the best sci-fi novels ever written. Anything from the brothers, really. They're not as easily accessible as, say, Asimov or Clarke, but their fiction is brilliant and unique - an incredible concoction of inventive sci-fi and brave fantasy. 

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Post #: 15
RE: Sci-Fi'zzzzz - 3/8/2007 11:41:44 PM   
Lydia_H


Posts: 3799
Joined: 26/11/2006
Yeah I heard it's a deeply philosophical book. Have you seen Stalker?

Number one priority now is to get all the Strugatsky books, lucky this thread reminded me about Roadside Picnic


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Post #: 16
RE: Sci-Fi'zzzzz - 4/8/2007 12:40:25 AM   
bozo


Posts: 2507
Joined: 1/11/2006
From: HM Prison Slade
quote:

ORIGINAL: Lydia_H

Yeah I heard it's a deeply philosophical book. Have you seen Stalker?

Number one priority now is to get all the Strugatsky books, lucky this thread reminded me about Roadside Picnic



Well, they wrote during the communism era in the Soviet Union so they knew that each and every word had to pass through a sieve in order to be published. This resulted in some of the most complex, ambiguous and philosophically profound fiction ever written, full of clever subliminal messages.
I own Stalker, but I'm reluctant to watch it - no film can do the brothers's prose justice, even a Tarkovsky directed one. 

< Message edited by bozo -- 4/8/2007 12:41:56 AM >

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Post #: 17
RE: Sci-Fi'zzzzz - 4/8/2007 1:41:59 AM   
Doctor Manhattan


Posts: 341
Joined: 25/9/2006
From: Mars
Ah top stuff guys. Thank you muchly!

_____________________________

Bob: "Can you keep a secret? I'm trying to organize a prison break. We have to first get out of this bar, then the hotel, then the city, and then the country. Are you in or you out?"
Charlotte: "I'm in."

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Post #: 18
RE: Sci-Fi'zzzzz - 5/8/2007 1:24:15 AM   
sanchia


Posts: 18132
Joined: 3/1/2006
From: Norwich
As bozo said something easily accessible is Mindstar Rising by Peter F Hamilton.  A very well realised Sci Fi thriller set in a Britain which is alter by rising sea levels, global warming and the recovery from a tyranncal regime which had recently been overthrown.   The technology is extraolated from modern advances and theories and it is an intelligent and very good read and less hard Sci Fi that Hamiltons later work The Nights Dawn trilogy which is more hard sci fi.

Mindstar Rising is the first of the greg Mandel trilogy and they are all good but the third is probably the lesser book.

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Post #: 19
RE: Sci-Fi'zzzzz - 7/8/2007 11:37:28 AM   
BigKovacs


Posts: 3188
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From: Textile Street.
The Kovacs series by Richard Morgan and the rest of his work is all very good.

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RE: Sci-Fi'zzzzz - 9/8/2007 2:46:01 PM   
Fanboyslayer


Posts: 2448
Joined: 22/11/2005
quote:

ORIGINAL: ilovebeerme



Of course there is always Dune, but everybody, sci-fi fan or not, should read that because it's just superb.



Oh no don't do it to yourself goodness I laboured through this and boy was it hard work. My other half liked it though so if people waffleing on about ecology and interbreeding is your bag fill ya boots I say.

Can certainly recommend I Am Legend though, just brilliant. Would say definitely read it before the film comes out.

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RE: Sci-Fi'zzzzz - 9/8/2007 3:14:02 PM   
sharkboy


Posts: 6285
Joined: 26/9/2005
From: Belfast
There used to be a brilliant thread for sci-fi recommendations which unfortunately fell off the end of the forum - maybe Clowny's extensive search skills can turn it up?

Right, where to begin...

You'll not read a better space opera than Dan Simmons' Hyperion/Endymion cantos - absolutely incredible work.  His Ilium/Olympos double bill comes close too, mixing a future off-world civilisation with the Trojan war, greek gods and metaphysics.

While Simmons has written my favourite books in the space opera genre, my favourite author is Iain M Banks, whose Culture novels are huge, intelligent books with a fair degree of humour too.  Dip in pretty much anywhere - you'll not be disappointed.

I'd also recommend Banks' best pal Ken Macleod, particularly if you like your sci-fi with a political edge.  His first books (The Fall Revolution series) wore his socialist ideology proudly on their sleeves while still being great renditions of a dystopian future.  Lately the politics have been less prevalent, but not entirely absent.  Check out his Engines of Light trilogy too.

Moving into the field of "hard" sci-fi, the aforementioned Mars Trilogy by Kim Stanley Robinson are hard to beat.  They're very scientific though, to the extent that some NASA boffin described them as less novels, more handbooks for terraforming and colonisation!  Great reads nonetheless.  Elsewhere in this field, Stephen Baxter has done some great books with the emphasis on the "sci" rather than the "fi", Ben Bova's "Solar System" series is fun and easy to read, and Greg Bear is never less than entertaining.

Elsewhere, check out Spares and Only Forward by Michael Marshal Smith, The Sparrow and Children of God by Mary Doria Russell, Grass by Sherri S Tepper and Neuromancer by William Gibson.  And don't forget to pick up the Hitchhikers Guide to The Galaxy - surely one of the funniest books ever written!

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RE: Sci-Fi'zzzzz - 9/8/2007 3:31:17 PM   
Captain Black


Posts: 6657
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Was it one of these, Sharky?

http://www.empireonline.com/forum/tm.asp?m=29883
http://www.empireonline.com/forum/tm.asp?m=1143728








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Post #: 23
RE: Sci-Fi'zzzzz - 9/8/2007 4:21:04 PM   
Mr Terrific


Posts: 1639
Joined: 15/7/2006
quote:

Can certainly recommend I Am Legend though, just brilliant. Would say definitely read it before the film comes out.


I second and third that. Read the book and you will understand why some people don't like the choice of Will Smith as the lead character.

At the moment I am reading short stories by Ray Bradbury and liking them very much.

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Post #: 24
RE: Sci-Fi'zzzzz - 9/8/2007 9:27:30 PM   
bozo


Posts: 2507
Joined: 1/11/2006
From: HM Prison Slade
quote:

ORIGINAL: Mr Terrific

quote:

Can certainly recommend I Am Legend though, just brilliant. Would say definitely read it before the film comes out.


I second and third that. Read the book and you will understand why some people don't like the choice of Will Smith as the lead character.

At the moment I am reading short stories by Ray Bradbury and liking them very much.


Yeah, it's like casting Van Damme as Hamlet.

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Post #: 25
RE: Sci-Fi'zzzzz - 10/8/2007 8:07:38 AM   
sharkboy


Posts: 6285
Joined: 26/9/2005
From: Belfast
quote:

ORIGINAL: Captain Black

Was it one of these, Sharky?

http://www.empireonline.com/forum/tm.asp?m=29883
http://www.empireonline.com/forum/tm.asp?m=1143728




Yeah, the first link is the thread I was talking about - a good source of sci-fi recommendations for anyone wanting to explore the genre - I'm happy to see that at least my lists in each thread are consistent!


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Post #: 26
RE: Sci-Fi'zzzzz - 10/8/2007 5:12:02 PM   
BigKovacs


Posts: 3188
Joined: 6/4/2006
From: Textile Street.

quote:

ORIGINAL: bozo

quote:

ORIGINAL: Mr Terrific

quote:

Can certainly recommend I Am Legend though, just brilliant. Would say definitely read it before the film comes out.


I second and third that. Read the book and you will understand why some people don't like the choice of Will Smith as the lead character.

At the moment I am reading short stories by Ray Bradbury and liking them very much.


Yeah, it's like casting Van Damme as Hamlet.


Im not convinced either. Speaking of Richard Matheson give the shrinking man a crack. A man is sailing his brothers boat and is doused in a radioactive wave and starts shrinking, very slowly. Sounds dumb but its a very sad story as his freinds forget him and his family lose respect for him as his children start to tower over him, although the family cat suddenly seems very interested in him! There was a crappy 50's movie based on it that probably had something to do with the cold war but forget that, this is a surprisingly sad book with some great action peices that Matheson has a hand for. Nice and short troo.

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Post #: 27
RE: Sci-Fi'zzzzz - 15/8/2007 11:29:40 AM   
Achtung Englander


Posts: 895
Joined: 6/12/2005
Of the Sci Fi books I have read I would recommend most of the stuff written in the 70s. It could be considered as romantic pulp in the sense that the imagination was out there before the invention of the microchip reduced almost all modern Sci Fi to Star Trek, computers and "digitial effects"

Arthur C Clarke pre 1990s - all of his stuff is good before the nineties especially 2001, Rendevouz With Rama, Cradle and Imperial Earth. His latest good book is Light Of Other Days
Asimov - almost any of his stuff is brilliant
Philip K Dick - Bladerunner, Man In the High Castle, A Scanner Darkly etc etc
Robert Heinlein - Starman Jones, Door Into Tomorrow

If you check out ebay you can find some real bargains and some the stories are superb

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Post #: 28
RE: Sci-Fi'zzzzz - 2/9/2007 4:31:03 PM   
/Clarence\


Posts: 596
Joined: 18/6/2006
Has anybody read or even seen the new series of books out recently called "future sci fi classics" they dont have titles on the covers, just some abstract images and some felt material.

I wanted to know if any of them are worth buying.

< Message edited by /Clarence\ -- 2/9/2007 4:35:44 PM >


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Post #: 29
RE: Sci-Fi'zzzzz - 3/9/2007 12:33:36 AM   
musewitch


Posts: 540
Joined: 30/9/2005
From: No place in the 'verse
I cannot reccomend Rendezvous with Rama by Arthur C. Clarke and the Ringworld serise by Larry Niven to you enough.  Ringworld and the Ringworld Engeneers especialy.

Also worth mentioning is The Smoke Ring by Larry Niven.

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