The Mars Trilogy by Kim Stanley Robinson. Can't recommend it enough.
You know what to do...
Hyperion / The Fall of Hyperion by Dan Simmons
The Shrike is the ultimate Grendel in my opinion.
Revelation Space and its sequels by Alastair Reynolds are the best sci-fi I've read lately.
Armor by John Steakly and Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card. Although the rest of the books in the Ender series get kind of.. out there. The first is definitely a good read.
I have been on a John Scalzi kick lately reading through Old Mans War trilogy, and Redshirts.
Might be a little difficult to find in print if you like physical books, but the Paratwa trilogy by Christopher Hinz is probably my second favorite series ever (behind The Black Company). First book is called Liege-Killer, and the premise is that back in the last war that made Earth mostly uninhabitable, they used genetically engineered assassins called Paratwa, a person that has two bodies but one consciousness. I mean literally one being that just happens to be in two places at once, like your right hand and your left hand working in unison without you having to even think about it. This made them the ultimate killing machine, masters of disguise and infiltration, etc. and often used to kill (and often assume the identity of) prominent figures. Reemul, the Liege-Killer, was the one that was sent out to kill other rogue Paratwa, so obviously he was the baddest of the bad. Supposedly most/all of the Paratwa were destroyed decades ago, but someone secreted Reemul away and put him in cryogenic stasis, and now he's been awakened to a world not used to Paratwa. Dun dun dun!!!
There is quite a bit of political intrigue and maneuvering mixed in with the all-out carnage of the Paratwa, along with a fairly unique take on what life would be like in such a world. I've read the book probably five different times at least, and the entire series three times I think. I have recommended it to like ten different people with varied tastes over the years, and every single one of them has liked it and wanted to read the other two books. So if you like sci-fi at all, I don't think you'll be disappointed.
Altered Carbon and the sequels!
Anyone read Peter F. Hamilton's Void series? If so, how is it?
Hamilton's stuff is definitely in the space opera category of sci-fi with lots of fantastical stuff as opposed to the more grounded in reality books of someone like Alistair Reynolds. They are fun books with some cool concepts though it just depends what type of sci-fi you are looking for.
In addition to the suggestions so far I'd throw out two older authors Alfred Bester, mainly The Demolished Man and The Stars My Destination originally titled Tiger, Tiger; and Roger Zelazny who's stuff influenced a lot of later sci-fi and fantasy authors.
Day Eight series by Ray Mazza. The author is a friend of mine, and despite that bias I still think the series is amazing, without knowing him. It's worth checking out if you're looking for something new. It's sci-fi, but as the author says, it's the sort of sci-fi you can read without having to be a sci-fi fan, if that makes sense?
Anyways, look into it; pretty cheap on kindle and paperback.
Hyperion Cantos already mentioned so I'll throw out some of Simmons other great works, Ilium and Olympos. Fucking goooooooooooooooood.
A Fire Upon the Deep and A Deepness in the Sky by Vernor Vinge.
A Fire tied for the Hugo in 1993 and Deepness won in 2000. Absolutely incredible books set in the same world but essentially completely stand-alone. A Deepness wrestles with the idea of space empires set where it is impossible to break the light speed barrier. A Fire deals with the problems that can arise when superhuman intelligences can intermingle with mere mortal intelligence.
The Gap series is a good, fast read. Kinda graphic though.
Robert Heinlein - grok
Isaac Asimov - robots
Arthur C. Clarke - Hal
Are there any decent SF novels revolving around military fleet combat/warfare?
Most David Weber books are exactly that (Honor Harrington, etc.). In particular the ones he did with Steve White. There is a 4 book series of Insurrection, Crusade, In Death Ground, and The Shiva Option which are pretty damn good, and have a lot of space battles as well.
Also, there are lots of Warhammer 40K books that deal with space combat, but if you don't like that universe you probably wouldn't want to read the books. And it is hit or miss as to whether or not they are any good.
An overlooked book, and a bit tough to find, Alexander Besher's 'Rim: A Novel of Virtual Reality' was a good read, a great blend of Sci Fi with Asian cultures and mythologies.
Does anyone else use Goodreads?
I've really enjoyed M. John Harrison, both the Kefahuchi Tract series and the novels from Viriconium that I have read so far.
Greg Bear has always been good. Forge of God/Anvil of Stars has probably been my favorite from him.
I use Goodreads as well, although I only have a couple of friends on there (forever alone) so the most use I get out of it is new releases by authors I've rated each month, which comes in a handy email. If we all want to be Goodreads friends I'll post mine as well, once someone tells me where the link is
EDIT: Think I figured it out, you have to edit your profile and enter something to personalize your url. At least, that's the only way I could figure out to do it. So here's mine, add me if you want:
Last edited by Void; 12-18-2012 at 09:06 PM.
+1 for Hinz's Paratawa series. Those were some of the best book I've ever read. Very unique.
Way of Kings by Sanderson is probably the best Fantasy novel written in the last 10+ years. It's amazing.
If you're a giant robot fan, the first 3 "Classic" battletech books by Michael Stackpole are also great reads, though a bit hard to find.
Warrior: En Garde, Warrior: Riposte, and Warrior: Coupe.
Been listening to Hamilton's first Void book. It's not bad. I love the idea of bionetics. Sure wish we had 'em now.
Weber- harrington or the books he did with White, his Dahak Series (first two books-third book is more "fantasy" in nature(planet that lost tech. all books combined into empire from the ashes)
Campbell's Lost Fleet series
john ringo's looking glass series that he did with travis "doc" taylor(Darpa employed rocket scientist, and star of rocket city rednecks). it starts alt-earth and ends up with space travel & space marines.
John Ringo's Troy Series (starts alt earth and ends with planetoid battle stations in space.
lets see what else has not been listed...
well going to old pulp fiction, the Perry Rhodan Series (it is dated-tech wise, starts out in the late 1960's) and only 130ish books got translated.
I've been reading the Deathstalker series recently. Not great, but not bad. Kind of filler reading as you're looking for something better.
Iain M. Banks new Culture novel see's him back on solid form. He has kept me entertained since his first novel "wasp factory" and I got a creeping sense of woe that his growing wealth (well deserved!) had lead to the loss of his mojo.
Seems its back to his best with "The Hydrogen Sonata".
Great North Road. It's set in a similar universe as in the Pandora/Void series (travel from planet to planet is done through gates), but not quite the same. The first part reads as a kinda police procedural (but with much advanced technology) and gets pretty epic towards the end. Highly enjoyed it!
One suggestion I got from the old board that I really liked was Book of the New Sun.
Excellent SciFi reads
Dan Simmons - Hyperion series, Illium, and Olympos. The best Sci FI you will ever read hands down.
Orson Scott Card, Enders Game. The others in the series, and the Bean series are good books, however it is like comparing Dune to its Sequels, they all pale in comparison.
Robert A. Heinlein - Starship Troopers
Richard K. Morgan - Altered Carbon, Broken Angels, and Woken Furies. Market Forces and Black Man were ok books
Roger Zelazny - Lord of Light, this is perhaps one of the best books of all times, and is on par with the likes of Hyperion as far as quality of the read.
Peter F hamilton - The Commonwealth Saga (excellent space opera), Fallen Dragon, The Night's Dawn series are all reasonably good books.
Hannu Rajaniemi - The Quantum Thief
Larry Niven - A Mote in God's Eye, and to a less extent The Gripping hand. The ringworld series are also good.
Herbert - Dune, skip the other books, none of them even remotely compare.
John Scalzi - Old Mans War is excellent the rest of the seriers are ok.
There is one series with a good amount of space combat, but it' name fails me. I will put it in here once I remember.
If you Like Halo read Greg Bear - Cryptum
I heavily recommend this one, especially for anyone born in the 80s http://www.amazon.com/Ready-Player-O...ady+player+one
And as always a personal favorite, http://www.amazon.com/Ultimate-Hitch...+to+the+galaxy
The first two books from the void series by Hamilton, Pandora's Star and Judas Unchained are both really good. I thought that the last three got increasing dull. The fantasy stuff was just super dull. I do however, want to be like Gore Burnelli when I grow up.
I am currently reading Alastair Reynolds new one, Blue Remembered Earth. It is very different than everything else I've read by him, and not really in a good way. Its more about family politics than spaceships.
Hamilton's Great North Road ended up being pretty good, especially after how drawn out the Pandora's star series got to be. I just got finished reading In Fury Born by David Weber, pretty decent pulp Sci-fi and a good stand alone if you don't have the time to read his Safehold or Honor Harrington series.
Currently reading Blackout/All Clear by Connie Willis for a sci-fi literature class. It's different, somewhat slow, and in a WWII context which sounds abhorrent to me by definition. But it's actually pretty decent. I like her writing style, and she's extremely adept at portraying anxiety, for what that's worth.
Frank Herbert has many more worthwhile reads. I particularly liked the Whipping Star/Dosadi Experiment duo and The Santaroga Barrier.
Another really good read is The Parafaith War by L. E. Modesitt, Jr, there are a couple of other books that tie into the same time line as this book, but you would be hard pressed to call them a sequel.
Otherworld by Tad Williams is the best cyberpunk I've ever read. Snowcrash by Neal Stephenson is solid, but it's harder to find a sympathetic character.
I haven't read anything by Tad Williams, but I'll probably pick those up if I see them anywhere.
My favorite "cyberpunk" novel is definitely Schismatrix by Bruce Sterling. There are also a few short stories in the same universe which are equally good, and there is a publication (Schismatrix Plus I think) that comes with the novel and the short stories.
Ditto on the previously mentioned Armor and The Gap.
Someone mentioned Space battles and I'd suggest David Feintuch's Seafort Saga books. Basically Horatio Hornblower in space, though a bit of warning, the books can get kind of depressing, as the protagonist is regularly kicked in the balls and stomped in the face, though he absolutely never gives up. Kind of like a Captain America in a space ship.
Also they made it into an MMO
Last edited by Merkins4Brazil; 01-23-2013 at 09:36 AM.
Gateway by Fredrik Pohl
Winner 1978 Hugo- Very quick read but has some great sci fi/mind fucks-- It is VERY relevant even though it was written in the 70's
Big fan of the Deathstalker series, its a bit of a guilty pleasure though. You know its crap, but its a FUN read!
I had never read a Philip K Dick book prior to a few weeks ago, but on a whim I bought and read The Zap Gun. It's a pretty entertaining story, albeit it could use a good editing to remedy some of the problems the story had with serialization. It's witty, and offers some great insights and parodies of the Cold War. I think I gave it a 3 or 3.5/5 on LibraryThing for being entertaining enough, but lacking real substance and having issues with lengthy and unnecessary prose due to serialization.
Because of that I did go to the store to pick up another PKD book, The Man Who Japed. It's another one that isn't super popular, but I wanted to give it a shot as it has an interesting premise.
Any thoughts on PKD, The Zap Gun, or The Man Who Japed?
PKD is certainly my favorite scifi author. The Man Who Japed is one of few books that I haven't read, though. In his case, the most popular novels are the definitely among the best (A Scanner Darkly and The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch are probably my favorite.) Out of the less popular, I think The Zap Gun rates pretty highly, although I really like Galactic Pot Healer as well.
In the general scheme of scifi, PKD was definitely a trailblazer. Some of the settings and concepts he used were familiar, but he was definitely asking different questions from his contemporaries. Reality, identity, conception of time ... Dick certainly valued the perception of his characters more than the technology and events. I don't think it is difficult to see these themes in The Zap Gun.
In a more personal sense, I really enjoy reading PKD because (with the exception of a couple novels) it seems to me like Dick writes because the result hold answers for him. That's why his best novels are those that come from the heart. A Scanner Darkly and Confessions of a Crap Artist are probably the best examples. While there are many fictional layers, both these novels come from some level of personal experience and it seems to me like he is trying to find meaning by looking at his life from an alternate, omniscient perspective.
I could talk about PKD all day. I just hope they stop making terrible movie adaptations of his novels/short stories (not talking about Blade Runner).
Last edited by T-rex; 02-04-2013 at 02:13 AM. Reason: drunk
Just read Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep for the first time and might've come thiiiiiiis close to becoming a nihilist. Powerful shit.
For anyone really interested in scifi, pick up the Wesleyan Anthology of Science Fiction. Is a compilation of many of the best short stories I've ever read, and just happens to also be all science fiction.
That does look like an interesting list, but a bit lacking. They chose "We Can Remember It for You Wholesale" and "Supertoys Last All Summer Long" because they have movies based on them, they are far from the best by Dick and Aldiss.
"'Repent Harlequin!' Said the Ticktockman" is similarly not Ellison's best, but it is pretty good. If I had to chose something to represent Ellison it would probably be "I Have No Mouth But I Must Scream."
I understand that weren't trying to make a best ever list, though, because if it were it would be half Ellison and the rest Sturgeon.
Yeah, they seemed to be going for more of an all-around evenly distributed anthology based on theme. Even the index has the stories listed by alphabetical author, but then re-lists them into categories of Alien Encounters, Apocalypse/Post-Apocalypse, Artificial/Posthuman Life-Forms, Computers and Virtual Reality, Evolution and Environment, Gender and Sexuality, Time Travel and Alternate History, Utopias/Dystopias, and War and Conflict. They also seem to be trying to encompass the history of science fiction as well, starting with Jules Verne and going as recent as 2008.
Last edited by Kinkle; 02-11-2013 at 12:26 AM.
Finished the Void trilogy by Peter F. Hamilton. I liked it but I wasn't crazy about how the final confrontation went down. A bunch of people standing around talking? I was expecting some serious action. It was a good series overall, but the ending was bleh.
I just finished Old Man's War. I really enjoyed it. I realized that is the first non-school book I've read in almost a year, and I MISSED reading...read half the book in 3 hours today.
As far as a recommendation that I haven't seen yet: Santiago by Mike Resnick. Very very good book.
I'm surprised nobody has mentioned William Gibson yet. The Sprawl trilogy is probably still one of my favorites. On the other hand, I probably everyone has just assumed that everyone else has already read them.
Someone mentioned Larry Niven earlier. I haven't read his earlier work, but his latest, "Of Worlds," series is amazing. It starts at:
1) Fleet of Worlds
2) Juggler of Worlds
3) Destroyer of Worlds
4) Betrayer of worlds
And it's continuing. Sci-fi book about intergalactic politics, intrigue, alien races and a lot of interesting theories and well-put together conclusions.
They were fun for what they were though.
Last edited by Gask; 04-15-2013 at 10:41 PM.
His best stuff is his collaborations with Jerry Pournelle.
Long time lurker...some good scifi books to check into are:
Space naval combat series: To Honor You Call Us (Man of War series) by Harvey G. Phillips
Time traveling duel to the end, has two characters one traveling back through time and one traveling forward through time: Orion: A Novel by Ben Bova
John Ringo and David Weber - Empire of Man books (March Upcountry and so on). really fun reads if you like to see the evolutoin of warfare in fast pace.
David Weber is a guilty pleasure of mine. His writing and dialogue can be terrible at times but I still enjoy the books. The Honorverse books aren't bad but I really like his Safehold series.
Another Sci-Fi writer I like is Ian Douglas. The Star Carrier books are pretty decent for fleet action and space combat (4 books so far, not sure when 5 is coming out). His other big series is a trilogy of trilogies (The Heritage Trilogy, Legacy Trilogy and Inheritance Trilogy). These trilogies focus more on Marines and their role in space warfare against alien races and they're good reads. However, I strongly suggest stopping with book 8 (Galactic Corps). That books wraps up the series nicely and the last book (Semper Human) is trash compared to the rest of the books.
I tried the first book in the Lost Fleet series. I finished it but I won't be reading any more of them. I found it super boring.
Has anyone read the Hyperion books? I'm about 1/4 of the way through the first one:
Hyperion (Hyperion Cantos, #1) by Dan Simmons — Reviews, Discussion, Bookclubs, Lists
And so far it's decent, but seems quite a bit overly... wordy (?) at times. It feels like high-brow sci-fi or something, and I'm not sure how I feel about it.
Hyperion is good stuff. First book is pretty heavy on the philosophy and shit but the series gets a bit more linear and explanatory as it goes on. I don't actually remember if I ever read the 4th book, it's been a really long time.
Anyways, they're good stuffs. You can tell because Dan Simmons name is on the cover.
I tend to like all the same stuff that you do (no homo) so that's good to hear. All the reviews on it are awesome, I think I'm just getting frontloaded a giant plot sandwich right now.
its pretty good, its definitely high brow scifi in a style that reminded me a lot of Dune, especially with a heavy dose of religious injection. All wraps up pretty nicely I think, but probably feels a bit dated now in terms of tech applications.
trying to read the entire Ender series now, holy shit the books get progressively worse and worse. I just started skipping entire books (pirated torrent of all 15 or so books) because he backtracks to shit nobody gives a fuck about. Now the author is writing about how gay dudes secretly wanna have sex with women so they can make kids which is what every human wants, man I shoulda stopped at book 1. glad I didn't watch the movie in theaters and am gonna pirate the fuck out of it.
Hyperion is one of the best pieces of SF ever written, and unfortunately like Dune the rest simply do not compare to the first. However unlike Dune the Sequels to Hyperion do not suck nearly as badly, Endymion the third book is the series is definitely the weakest of the series but they are all still very good books. If you enjoy Hyperion I strongly suggest you read Illium and Olympos. I would also suggest Richard K Morgan Altered Carbon and Fallen Angel, I will be damned if I can remember the third novel.
Ironically I LOVED Richard k.Morgan and the first dune books but I just never enjoyed Hyperion I read it several times trying to see what I.missed but I just didn't enjoy it. Weird I know but I like reading in general.
MWS Natural "As an online discussion grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving black people approaches 1."
I finished Hyperion, and am about halfway through the second book. It is pretty good, but man is it wordy. I swear these books would be half as long if Simmons could cut down on the adjectives and descriptive narratives. I understand that he gets into his writing and wants to paint the most detailed picture that he can, but it gets a little tedious. Take this one sentence for example:
That's one sentence. And he writes like that a LOT. Pretty solid book otherwise, but sometimes I feel like I'm slogging through Gravity's Rainbow.Chronos Keep jutted from the easternmost rim of the great Bridle Range: a grim, baroque heap of sweating stones with three hundred rooms and halls, a maze of lightless corridors leading to deep halls, towers, turrets, balconies overlooking the northern moors, airshafts rising half a kilometer to light and rumored to drop to the world’s labyrinth itself, parapets scoured by cold winds from the peaks above, stairways—inside and out—carved from the mountain stone and leading nowhere, stained-glass windows a hundred meters tall set to catch the first rays of solstice sun or the moon on midwinter night, paneless windows the size of a man’s fist looking out on nothing in particular, an endless array of bas-relief, grotesque sculptures in half-hidden niches, and more than a thousand gargoyles staring down from eave and parapet, transept and sepulcher, peering down through wood rafters in the great halls and positioned so as to peer in the blood-tinted windows of the northeast face, their winged and hunchbacked shadows moving like grim sundial hours, cast by sunlight in the day and gas-fed torches at night.
Plus it's just cool.
I just finished Ender's Game (book not series) and..
I got a good laugh out of his naive version of the internet though. Things like that are always fun in old sci-fi. Yeah, a kid trolling message forums on the internet takes over the world. Emperor Lumie yo.
Last edited by Kreugen; 01-08-2014 at 05:06 PM.
I found Evan Curries Warrior's Wings series to be pretty good. Terms of Enlistment by Marko Kloos. Had a guilty pleasure reading Ready Player One by Ernest Cline.
Nostalgiadork checking in. I loved that book, read it all in a day. Of course, I recognized almost every single reference, so that probably helped the nostalgia.
Been reading a lot lately, going through the major sci fi / fantasy awards and picking from them.
Currently : Peter F. Hamilton - The Reality Dysfunction vol 2 (amazing)
Alexis Panshin - Rite of Passage (not that great)
Frederik Pohl - Man Plus (not that great)
Fritz Leiber - The Big Time (kinda shitty)
Gene Wolfe - The Book of the New Sun (awesome)
Vernor Vinge - A Fire Upon the Deep (awesome)
Robin Hobb - The Farseer Trilogy (decent)
Just discovered there's more volumes in the same universe as The book of the New Sun so I know what I'm reading next. I know there's more from Farseer as well but I'm not that excited about that.
Excerpt from Peter F. Hamilton's next book, based in the Commonwealth world:
The Timelost Forest extract from The Abyss Beyond Dreams | the unisphere | a site dedicated to the works of Peter F Hamilton
Due out in about 9/10 months.
I love hyperion and fall of hyperion! I'd skip over Endymion and the rise of endymion though. they aren't bad, but they are nowhere as good as the first two books. I read all 4 in a row though, could have been dan simmons fatigue.
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