Reader's Corner

bioreplica's picture
bioreplica
April 13, 2008 - 6:33pm
I have just turned the last page of «Dies the Fire» (S.M. Stirling 2004 ROC). A good read all in all. Excellent post apocalypse description. The twist : All electronic devices and firearms are inoperable after a blinding white flash.

I'm looking for something else to read. SF mainly (hard, soft, anticipation)
Your suggestions are welcomed.

My most enjoyable SF Book list:
1- The Player of Games (Ian M. Banks)
2- Hyperion Trilogy (Dan Simmons)
3- Mars Trilogy (Kim Stanley Robinson)
4- When Gravity Fails (George Alec Effinger)
5- Stainless Steel Rat (Harry Harrison)

Old School
6- Counter-Clock World (Philip K. Dick - 1967)
7- City (Clifford D Simak - 1944)
8- Anything by Brian Aldiss (AI)
9- Anything by J. G. Ballard (Atrocity Exhibition)
«Language is a virus from outer space» William S. Burroughs
Comments:

Gergmaster's picture
Gergmaster
April 13, 2008 - 6:57pm
Hey if you like Hard Sci-Fi with a twist of dark future in it look for the author named Alastair Reynolds. He is famous for his Revelation Space Series which I have two of the six books he had and they were awesome. Start either The Prefect or Chasm City. Both are considered the prequels even though they were written after the fact.

Other good sci-fi books are the Star Wars New Jedi order series (read about half of the 21 books) pretty good and the best part is they are written by a group of writers who basically agreed to put together the project. Each book closely follows the other making them very easy to read. Need to start with Vector Prime and go from there.
Confucious Says:
     Man with one chopstick go hungry.
     Man who eat many prunes get good run for money.
     Man who live in glass house should change clothes in basement.

Corvus's picture
Corvus
April 13, 2008 - 7:39pm
Reynolds proved to me that "hard" science fiction can also be exciting.  I second the recommendation to check out the series beginning with Revelation Space.
If you wish to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first invent the universe. -- Carl Sagan

Sam's picture
Sam
April 15, 2008 - 9:44am
I enjoyed 2010 and 2061. If you have not read Starship Troopers (Heinlein) you should, if you like military/combat sci-fi. The Han Solo Chronicles (I think that is what they are called -- three Han Solo books) -- NOT HARD SCI FI, but very entertaining and actually, for me, added some gritty realism to the Star Wars Universe. Actually, if you havn't read Alien and Aliens, give it a shot -- sure, you know the story, but the books had a bunch of neat extra details in it. I have a bunch of others, but can't think of them at the moment.

Gergmaster's picture
Gergmaster
April 15, 2008 - 5:44pm

Yeah Starship Troopers was pretty good. Or you could read the books by R.A. Salvatore (Legend of Drizzt). Other goods books are ones by Kevin J. Anderson (Saga of the Seven Suns).

Confucious Says:
     Man with one chopstick go hungry.
     Man who eat many prunes get good run for money.
     Man who live in glass house should change clothes in basement.

Procene's picture
Procene
April 16, 2008 - 7:15am
Here are some of my favorites:

Starship Troopers
Ender's Game
Rendevous with Rama
I, Robot
Dune

I agree with Sam about the Han Solo trilogy; I enjoyed them immensely.  I also really liked Timothy Zahn's "Heir to the Empire" trilogy for Star Wars: Heir, Dark Force Rising, and the Last Command.  I thought Admiral Thrawn was one of the most interesting, and coolest, villians ever created.

Will's picture
Will
April 16, 2008 - 3:01pm
Gergmaster wrote:
Hey if you like Hard Sci-Fi with a twist of dark future in it look for the author named Alastair Reynolds. He is famous for his Revelation Space Series which I have two of the six books he had and they were awesome. Start either The Prefect or Chasm City. Both are considered the prequels even though they were written after the fact.

Other good sci-fi books are the Star Wars New Jedi order series (read about half of the 21 books) pretty good and the best part is they are written by a group of writers who basically agreed to put together the project. Each book closely follows the other making them very easy to read. Need to start with Vector Prime and go from there.


EU?! Ew!

Seriously, the only good NJO books were the three Force Heretic books, starting with Remnant. Gilad Pellaeon is officially my fav Star Wars character.

The best EU novels are the Clone Wars books, particularlly Shatterpoint...Stover's a hell of a writer, excellent characters(Chalk, Nick Rostu and Kar Vastor in particular), and I'd love to see some of his non-SW fiction.

 

"You're everything that's base in humanity," Cochrane continued. "Drawing up strict, senseless rules for the sole reason of putting you at the top and excluding anyone you say doesn't belong or fit in, for no other reason than just because you say so."


—Judith and Garfield Reeves-Stephens, Federation

bioreplica's picture
bioreplica
April 16, 2008 - 4:49pm
Heinlein! He is a GOD of SF. From a time when SF was about ideas not about space opera. I dare you to go to the public library and try one of these three books:
  • Stranger in a Strange Land is so good!
  • I Will Fear No Evil is twisted
  • Friday challenging
I'm looking for novel SF ideas. Generally, I stay away from franchise litterature like Star Wars (although I confess I have read - and enjoyed - many of these books many years ago). So, anyone out there with suggestions?
«Language is a virus from outer space» William S. Burroughs

TerlObar's picture
TerlObar
April 16, 2008 - 6:18pm
Heinlein definitely.  I like The Moon is a Harsh Mistress as well.  I've always liked Asimov (Robot series more than the Foundation ones) and Niven (anything) as well.  I also really like Downbelow Station by C.J. Cherryh and Fred Saberhagen's Beserker books.  Those are the ones that come immediately to mind.
Ad Astra Per Ardua!
Webmaster - The Star Frontiers Network & this site
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Gergmaster's picture
Gergmaster
April 16, 2008 - 6:39pm
bioreplica wrote:
Heinlein! He is a GOD of SF. From a time when SF was about ideas not about space opera. I dare you to go to the public library and try one of these three books:
  • Stranger in a Strange Land is so good!
  • I Will Fear No Evil is twisted
  • Friday challenging
I'm looking for novel SF ideas. Generally, I stay away from franchise litterature like Star Wars (although I confess I have read - and enjoyed - many of these books many years ago). So, anyone out there with suggestions?


The scary part about his was that he was originally considered a childrens' author. But, the publisher decided to cut him short when he wrote the book Starship Troopers and made it like adult science fiction because of what was talked about in the book.
Confucious Says:
     Man with one chopstick go hungry.
     Man who eat many prunes get good run for money.
     Man who live in glass house should change clothes in basement.

Will's picture
Will
April 18, 2008 - 12:40pm
Heinlein started out writing juvie SF fiction(Space Cadet, Tunnel To Mars, etc) but graduated to much-gritter fare, only to end things on a note of senility.

Faves of his are Starship Troopers, Beyond This Horizon, Stranger in a Strange Land, and, yes, The Number of the Beast...his best short story, however, remains his first, And He Built a Crooked House, where his protagonist constructs a four-dimensional house years before Doctor Who.

Another good novel trilogy is Steve Perry's first, the Matador trilogy(The Man Who Never Missed, Matadora, and The Machievelli Interface).

And, of course, there's the classic, E.E. "Doc" Smith's Lensman series(Triplanetary, First Lensman, Galactic Patrol, Grey Lensman, Second-Stage Lensman, and Children of the Lens) which, while a product of their time in many ways, are well-written stories with decent characterization, and the science is spot-on.

Of course, for a novel more relevant to today, one needs look no further than Farenheit 451, by Ray Bradbury. With its descriptions of enforced illiteracy, mandatory dumbing down of the schools, multimedia Presidential campaigns and, of course, the insidious influence of television on society(and vice-versa), this almost could have just as easily been written in the last twenty years as back in the 1950s.

"You're everything that's base in humanity," Cochrane continued. "Drawing up strict, senseless rules for the sole reason of putting you at the top and excluding anyone you say doesn't belong or fit in, for no other reason than just because you say so."


—Judith and Garfield Reeves-Stephens, Federation

Will's picture
Will
April 18, 2008 - 12:42pm
TerlObar wrote:
Heinlein definitely.  I like The Moon is a Harsh Mistress as well.  I've always liked Asimov (Robot series more than the Foundation ones) and Niven (anything) as well.  I also really like Downbelow Station by C.J. Cherryh and Fred Saberhagen's Beserker books.  Those are the ones that come immediately to mind.


The novels set in Cherryh's Downbelow universe are especially good.

Asimov is a better short story writer than novelist, IMO, while Niven and Pournelle's Footfall is an outstanding read.

"You're everything that's base in humanity," Cochrane continued. "Drawing up strict, senseless rules for the sole reason of putting you at the top and excluding anyone you say doesn't belong or fit in, for no other reason than just because you say so."


—Judith and Garfield Reeves-Stephens, Federation

Rick's picture
Rick
May 18, 2008 - 10:31am
Somebody's mentioned the Downbelow Station series, so the Chanur series by C.J. Cherryh are also very good, got to be my favourite Sci-Fi author. Also look out for the Confederation series by Peter F. Hamilton, especially the Nights Dawn Trilogy - a bit off-beat but very good.

Also have a look at a short story by John Ringo and Victor Mitchell called A Ship named Francis, it's in the Honor Harrington series, in the Service of the Sword. It is hilarious; sick, twisted and so funny, I can't wait to put it into a game.

"But, Sir," the bosun said, regretting the words even before they left his mouth, "we don't have any thumbscrews."

"That, Bosun," the XO replied in a low, mad whisper, "is why they give us machine shops!"


ArtMic's picture
ArtMic
November 14, 2009 - 12:44am
How about The stainless steel rat series and deathworld series by Harry Harrison. And don't forget Hammer's Slammers by drake, I loved them all.

Gold is for the mistress-silver for the maid-copper for the craftsman cunning at his trade.But Iron-Cold Iron- is master of them all

Putraack's picture
Putraack
November 20, 2009 - 9:04pm
S.M. Stirling- The sky people.  Not space-y, but good planetary fiction.  There's a sequel I haven't read yet (In the courts of the crimson kings).  For Victorian-era alt-history, I also liked his Peshawar lancers.

Elizabeth Moon- I have trouble reading her stuff, her series' main protagonist is often too similar to the last series' heroine.  Trading in danger seemed like a neat start to a series, and it turned out OK.  I wanted it to go a different direction, so I mark it down a little.  Hunting party also had a good story, I was less interested in the sequels.

I've been a fan of David Weber's Honor Harrington, but less so as the series plodded on.

No one mentioned Dune yet?  Again, I liked the first far more than the rest.

I'm a fan of "old" Star Trek, my short list of the 6 best novels:
How much for just the planet? / John M.  Ford-- Funny beyond belief!
The final reflection / John M. Ford-- not funny, but a great book without Kirk/Spock/McCoy.
My enemy, my ally and The Romulan way by Diane Duane (there are 2 more sequels, they're OK)
Dreadnought! and Battlestations! by Diane Carey.

Not sci-fi, but I just finished The Caine mutiny last weekend, and I can't stop raving about it.  At least go see the flick.

ArtMic's picture
ArtMic
November 21, 2009 - 2:27am
I like alternative history. Harrison wrote some good ones. Guys going back to the civil war giving the south AK-47 and them trying to adapt future tech. Or the west of eden series of what if the rock didnt hit the earth and man evolved along beside dinos and a race of dino men. it had kinda disturbing inter-species sex scene... Kirk never did it like that hehehe
Gold is for the mistress-silver for the maid-copper for the craftsman cunning at his trade.But Iron-Cold Iron- is master of them all

jedion357's picture
jedion357
November 21, 2009 - 9:20pm
ArtMic wrote:
I like alternative history. Harrison wrote some good ones. Guys going back to the civil war giving the south AK-47 and them trying to adapt future tech. Or the west of eden series of what if the rock didnt hit the earth and man evolved along beside dinos and a race of dino men. it had kinda disturbing inter-species sex scene... Kirk never did it like that hehehe


I think HArry Turtledove wrote, "Guns of the South" the cover has Robert E Lee holding an AK 47 it was pretty good. He edited a great collection of short stories called "Alternative Generals" - one story asked the question if American had never broken away from the UK then what could the Crimean War have looked like and the story visited the charge of the Light Brigade but with Robert E. Lee in command of that charge.

Plus i rather loved his World at War stories where aliens invade during the middle of WW2 occassionally Turtledove will have a character that is very compelling and keeps me reading but not always.
I might not be a dralasite, vrusk or yazirian but I do play one in Star Frontiers!

ArtMic's picture
ArtMic
November 22, 2009 - 3:02am
yeah my fault got those two mixed up always.
Gold is for the mistress-silver for the maid-copper for the craftsman cunning at his trade.But Iron-Cold Iron- is master of them all

iggy's picture
iggy
December 12, 2009 - 2:33pm
If you want to go world hopping and get great ideas for new worlds read Alan Dean Foster:

"Midworld" The most savage jungle/forest you will meet.
"Sentanced to Prism" What a world of silicon based life could be like.
"Catchalot" Where are the sentients on an ocean world?

Or if you want to explore first contact from an alien point of view then read "Nor Qrystal Tears".

If you want to read the Flinx and Pip series, start with "For Love of Mother Not".

All of the Foster SF novels have very good world ideas in them.
-iggy

ArtMic's picture
ArtMic
December 19, 2009 - 8:27pm
Have you seen that Dan O'bannon passed away on the 17th! May he enjoy his eternal peace.

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dan_O'Bannon

Gold is for the mistress-silver for the maid-copper for the craftsman cunning at his trade.But Iron-Cold Iron- is master of them all

Zeram's picture
Zeram
December 27, 2009 - 6:12pm
Iggy wrote:
If you want to go world hopping and get great ideas for new worlds read Alan Dean Foster:

"Midworld" The most savage jungle/forest you will meet.
"Sentanced to Prism" What a world of silicon based life could be like.
"Catchalot" Where are the sentients on an ocean world?

Or if you want to explore first contact from an alien point of view then read "Nor Qrystal Tears".

If you want to read the Flinx and Pip series, start with "For Love of Mother Not".

All of the Foster SF novels have very good world ideas in them.


Just finished "Sentenced to Prism" within the last month.  A definite read.
Also take a look at "Icerigger".  The aliens in there remind me a lot of yazirians with with the membranes under the arms.  The aliens in the book uses them as sails to go across the ice.

I'm currently reading "McCade For Hire" which pulls in the first two books of the Sam McCade series which are "Galactic Bounty" and "Imperial Bounty" by William C Dietz.

Also check out Jack L Chalker's "Rings of the Masters" series. 

Also a thumbs-up for the old Heinlein books.  I am still reading through a stack I picked up at a used book store.