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(Gizmodo)   Twenty one books that forever changed science fiction and fantasy   ( io9.gizmodo.com) divider line
    More: Interesting, science fiction, Philip K. Dick, Arthur C. Clarke, Samuel R. Delany, book, science fiction writer, hugo award, Cover art  
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9140 clicks; posted to Geek » on 17 Jun 2017 at 11:06 PM (18 weeks ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2017-06-17 10:54:38 PM  
Good enough but they forgot H. Beam Piper.
 
2017-06-17 11:06:45 PM  
Three others that come to mind...
The Lensman saga - created and inspired space opera...
Enders game - influential even though I can not read it anymore due to the opinions of the author...
And Elric of Melnibone.. The anti-conan who lead to a very different view of fantasy.
However, I would add that I am not sure what I would take off to put any of them up.
 
2017-06-17 11:12:06 PM  

RuneSaint: Enders game - influential even though I can not read it anymore due to the opinions of the author...


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Armor_(novel)

upload.wikimedia.org
 
2017-06-17 11:16:42 PM  

RuneSaint: Enders game - influential even though I can not read it anymore due to the opinions of the author...


Such a shame. The whole quartet of books is fantastic. In fact, I might be the only person in the world who actually prefers Children of the Mind to Ender's Game.
/will still read them despite my massive disagreements with nearly all of OSC's "politics"
 
2017-06-17 11:18:15 PM  
List fails without Battlefield Earth.

/jk
 
2017-06-17 11:20:14 PM  
A Wrinkle In Time was pretty influential to me as a kid.
 
2017-06-17 11:21:29 PM  

JasonOfOrillia: List fails without Battlefield Earth.

/jk


I think I should try to read that. After all, I've seen the movie five times. For the search of subliminal messages, for the lolz, for the dad to see his reaction to such crap, and for the fact it was the only shiat on one afternoon.

/there's worse movies. They haven't made a Avengers movie based on the old British show. Reports of such are as real as Highlander sequels.
 
2017-06-17 11:23:32 PM  
Whoever decided that Sci Fi and Fantasy should go together deserves a kick in the crotch.

/Fantasy sucks
//and I'm sure you (yes you) are there saying "No way, Sci Fi is the one that's terrible!"
 
2017-06-17 11:24:53 PM  
Hunger Games is on the list but

img.fark.net

...isn't?
 
2017-06-17 11:25:18 PM  
The number one should be:
t2.gstatic.com

(Don't. Just don't.)
 
2017-06-17 11:25:26 PM  

toejam: A Wrinkle In Time was pretty influential to me as a kid.


The first SF book I read...probably the first SF many of us read.

I haven't read 3, 13, 14, and 17, but I've read The Forever War probably 15 times.
 
2017-06-17 11:25:35 PM  
img.fark.net
 
2017-06-17 11:26:38 PM  
I only recently read the Forever War and really liked it. I followed it up with Way Station and found it just as enjoyable.

I love it when Amazon has crazy sales on books!
 
2017-06-17 11:27:10 PM  

Practical_Draconian: JasonOfOrillia: List fails without Battlefield Earth.

/jk

I think I should try to read that. After all, I've seen the movie five times. For the search of subliminal messages, for the lolz, for the dad to see his reaction to such crap, and for the fact it was the only shiat on one afternoon.


The movie is great, bad science fiction. I've watched it several times also.
 
2017-06-17 11:29:45 PM  

MightyPez: I only recently read the Forever War and really liked it. I followed it up with Way Station and found it just as enjoyable.

I love it when Amazon has crazy sales on books!


Agreed!  I thought that someone had picked up the movie rights for The Forever War. Haven't heard of Way Station, I'll have to check it out.
 
2017-06-17 11:31:32 PM  
Has anyone ever finished Dhalgren.

I've tried and just can't make it thru.
 
2017-06-17 11:31:34 PM  
Moon is a Harsh Mistress.
Made a change from 'pulp' juvenile stories to larger issues and had group marriages and blended families.


And for fantasy. The "Lion Witch and Wardrobe"  should be there and other CS Lewis books like Perelandra ...even more than Harry Potter.
And WTF? No John Carter of Mars? No Tarzan?  No Lewis Carol?
Tell you what get back to me a hundred years and tell me of ANYTHING from Potterverse (And I love HP books) has same type of impact as Lewis Carol. Phrases "we've gone through the looking glass" "All the Kings Men" "down the rabbit hole" "Mad Tea Party" that are in our cultural DNA we often don't even recognize the source.
 
2017-06-17 11:33:16 PM  

UncleDirtNap: MightyPez: I only recently read the Forever War and really liked it. I followed it up with Way Station and found it just as enjoyable.

I love it when Amazon has crazy sales on books!

Agreed!  I thought that someone had picked up the movie rights for The Forever War. Haven't heard of Way Station, I'll have to check it out.


Forever Peace and Forever Free are the sequels.  I don't really recommend either.
 
2017-06-17 11:33:33 PM  

Practical_Draconian: JasonOfOrillia: List fails without Battlefield Earth.

/jk

I think I should try to read that. After all, I've seen the movie five times. For the search of subliminal messages, for the lolz, for the dad to see his reaction to such crap, and for the fact it was the only shiat on one afternoon.

/there's worse movies. They haven't made a Avengers movie based on the old British show. Reports of such are as real as Highlander sequels.


I read it many many years ago. The first half, if I recall, isn't far off from the movie in regards to plot. Hits the same story beats and as far as I remember every scene in the movie appears in the book at one time or another. Its mostly just more drawn out and verbose about it. But the book goes further after the defeat of the Psychlo's. So if you're curious about what happens to Earth after the Psychlo's are kicked off it then just skip to the halfway point of the novel or thereabouts and go from there.

/Don't recommend it.
//It's very badly written.
 
2017-06-17 11:33:34 PM  

UncleDirtNap: MightyPez: I only recently read the Forever War and really liked it. I followed it up with Way Station and found it just as enjoyable.

I love it when Amazon has crazy sales on books!

Agreed!  I thought that someone had picked up the movie rights for The Forever War. Haven't heard of Way Station, I'll have to check it out.


Exclusive: Jon Spaihts Updates on The Forever War Movie
 
2017-06-17 11:34:06 PM  

toejam: A Wrinkle In Time was pretty influential to me as a kid.


That too. It was one my first introductions to "SF"
Also...Mom read it to us aloud when were were kids. A chapter a night for a summer.
 
2017-06-17 11:34:17 PM  

optikeye: Moon is a Harsh Mistress.
Made a change from 'pulp' juvenile stories to larger issues and had group marriages and blended families.


And for fantasy. The "Lion Witch and Wardrobe"  should be there and other CS Lewis books like Perelandra ...even more than Harry Potter.
And WTF? No John Carter of Mars? No Tarzan?  No Lewis Carol?
Tell you what get back to me a hundred years and tell me of ANYTHING from Potterverse (And I love HP books) has same type of impact as Lewis Carol. Phrases "we've gone through the looking glass" "All the Kings Men" "down the rabbit hole" "Mad Tea Party" that are in our cultural DNA we often don't even recognize the source.



I think at least one Phillip K Dick book should make the list.
 
2017-06-17 11:36:39 PM  
Harry Potter and Hunger Games? LOL. No.


The Martian Chronicles is a collection of loosely related fictional stories depicting humanities struggle

When writing about writing one should be able to write competently.
 
2017-06-17 11:37:11 PM  

TedCruz'sCrazyDad: optikeye: Moon is a Harsh Mistress.
Made a change from 'pulp' juvenile stories to larger issues and had group marriages and blended families.


And for fantasy. The "Lion Witch and Wardrobe"  should be there and other CS Lewis books like Perelandra ...even more than Harry Potter.
And WTF? No John Carter of Mars? No Tarzan?  No Lewis Carol?
Tell you what get back to me a hundred years and tell me of ANYTHING from Potterverse (And I love HP books) has same type of impact as Lewis Carol. Phrases "we've gone through the looking glass" "All the Kings Men" "down the rabbit hole" "Mad Tea Party" that are in our cultural DNA we often don't even recognize the source.


I think at least one Phillip K Dick book should make the list.


His short stories mostly changed Hollywood. I mean 90 percent of SF movies now are mostly based on a actually PKD story and want to be a PKD story.
 
2017-06-17 11:37:12 PM  
If they had to put a dystopian novel on there it needs to be 1984 instead of Hunger Games. There's a reason we refer to events as Orwellian and not Collinsian. Also for epic fantasy Tolkien pretty much covers the massively influential books. Game of Thrones? Not so much.
 
2017-06-17 11:38:40 PM  

Renob: RuneSaint: Enders game - influential even though I can not read it anymore due to the opinions of the author...

Such a shame. The whole quartet of books is fantastic. In fact, I might be the only person in the world who actually prefers Children of the Mind to Ender's Game.
/will still read them despite my massive disagreements with nearly all of OSC's "politics"


In that vein the Hyperion novels should be on there. At least Simmons didn't start out having odious beliefs.  Or at least if they were there he kept them to himself.
 
2017-06-17 11:40:45 PM  

optikeye: TedCruz'sCrazyDad: optikeye: Moon is a Harsh Mistress.
Made a change from 'pulp' juvenile stories to larger issues and had group marriages and blended families.


And for fantasy. The "Lion Witch and Wardrobe"  should be there and other CS Lewis books like Perelandra ...even more than Harry Potter.
And WTF? No John Carter of Mars? No Tarzan?  No Lewis Carol?
Tell you what get back to me a hundred years and tell me of ANYTHING from Potterverse (And I love HP books) has same type of impact as Lewis Carol. Phrases "we've gone through the looking glass" "All the Kings Men" "down the rabbit hole" "Mad Tea Party" that are in our cultural DNA we often don't even recognize the source.


I think at least one Phillip K Dick book should make the list.

His short stories mostly changed Hollywood. I mean 90 percent of SF movies now are mostly based on a actually PKD story and want to be a PKD story.


He had a lot of great ideas, but was not a great writer.
You'll notice that the movies are loosely based on his books.
 
2017-06-17 11:40:47 PM  

Stone Meadow: UncleDirtNap: MightyPez: I only recently read the Forever War and really liked it. I followed it up with Way Station and found it just as enjoyable.

I love it when Amazon has crazy sales on books!

Agreed!  I thought that someone had picked up the movie rights for The Forever War. Haven't heard of Way Station, I'll have to check it out.

Exclusive: Jon Spaihts Updates on The Forever War Movie


Yea I just saw that. I hope they stick to the book's roots and don't make it a strick action movie.
 
2017-06-17 11:40:51 PM  

Practical_Draconian: JasonOfOrillia: List fails without Battlefield Earth.

/jk

I think I should try to read that. After all, I've seen the movie five times. For the search of subliminal messages, for the lolz, for the dad to see his reaction to such crap, and for the fact it was the only shiat on one afternoon.

/there's worse movies. They haven't made a Avengers movie based on the old British show. Reports of such are as real as Highlander sequels.


I'm holding out hope the someday we'll see another Ghostbusters movie. It'll be the first one since Ghostbusters II (1989).
 
2017-06-17 11:41:04 PM  

optikeye: Moon is a Harsh Mistress.
Made a change from 'pulp' juvenile stories to larger issues and had group marriages and blended families.


I liked that one.  I need to check out some other Heinlein stuff.  I've watched the Starship Troopers movie, but never read the book, and I see the list mentions Stranger in a Strange Land, I suppose that should also be on my list.
 
2017-06-17 11:41:30 PM  
Gateway by Frederick Pohl should be on there some where.
 
2017-06-17 11:42:40 PM  

Fingerware Error: Good enough but they forgot H. Beam Piper.


Space Vikings greatly influenced Harlee.
 
2017-06-17 11:46:34 PM  
t2.gstatic.com

This one should be in the top 10, IMHO.

/ anyone who's played "Fallout" will recognize its influence....
 
2017-06-17 11:47:12 PM  
A lot of the stuff I love has already been covered upthread, so I'm here to nominate Glen Cook.  His Dread Empire and Black Company series did a lot to move fantasy fiction down from kings and princes to the gritty grunts in the trenches.

He has some good SF out there, too, particularly 'A Matter of Time'.

Richard K. Morgan, Walter Jon Williams, and the two guys writing 'The Expanse' as James S. A. Corey are cranking out some damn good hard SF, but it's a bit early to say if they'll end up changing the genre.  And in any case, they are standing on the shoulders of those who came before.

Maybe John W. Campbell, for services to the genre, and for tales like 'Forgetfulness', and the Arcot / Wade / Morey stories?
 
2017-06-17 11:48:02 PM  

RuneSaint: Three others that come to mind...
The Lensman saga - created and inspired space opera...
Enders game - influential even though I can not read it anymore due to the opinions of the author...
And Elric of Melnibone.. The anti-conan who lead to a very different view of fantasy.
However, I would add that I am not sure what I would take off to put any of them up.


100% Ender's Game

Also might want to add the self publishing success of Michael Sullivan w Riyria Chronicles, etc.

(currently listening to Wind Up Girl in my car)
 
2017-06-17 11:48:31 PM  

fusillade762: Harry Potter and Hunger Games? LOL. No.


I could see the argument for those in that their huge success drew in a lot of readers who may not have been previously interested in the genre.  They also spawned plenty of imitators, for better or for worse.

elpresidenteALO:. Also for epic fantasy Tolkien pretty much covers the massively influential books. Game of Thrones? Not so much.

The ASOIAF books are a pretty far cry from Tolkien.  As they mention in TFA they break the mold a bit for fantasy novels when it comes to moral/ethical complexity.
 
2017-06-17 11:49:24 PM  
img.fark.net


Winner winner chicken dinner

/Or wiener wiener?
 
2017-06-17 11:50:39 PM  
Oh, and anything by 'Pel Torro' should be on the list - as a shining example of how NOT to write.
 
2017-06-17 11:51:27 PM  
I'm really disappointed none of Asimov's robot novels appeared on the list (but then I suppose there isn't 1 particular novel that applies.. more a group of novels and short stories).

It's a bit stupid having Hunger Games on there.  Is "forever changed" being replaced by "very popular"?
 
2017-06-17 11:52:38 PM  

MightyPez: I only recently read the Forever War and really liked it. I followed it up with Way Station and found it just as enjoyable.

I love it when Amazon has crazy sales on books!


img.fark.net
It will fark you up and exalt you at the same time.

https://www.amazon.com/We-All-Died-Breakaway-Station/dp/0099388804/re​f​=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1497757767&sr=8-1&keywords=we+all+died+at+breakawa​y+station
 
2017-06-17 11:53:54 PM  

steelydanfan: [img.fark.net image 425x679]


Winner winner chicken dinner

/Or wiener wiener?


While on the subject of trash:

images.gr-assets.com

I Audible'd this one because it was a free selection, was apparently a best-seller, and hey, dragons.  What a waste of time.  It's pretty much a more poorly-written Twilight ripoff (which, really, is an achievement in and of itself) with dragons and dragon-slayers instead of vampires and werewolves.
 
2017-06-17 11:54:09 PM  

phaseolus: Hunger Games is on the list but

[img.fark.net image 220x330]

...isn't?


Agreed. List fails hard by omitting Brunner. In addition to Zanzibar, you have The Sheep Look Up for environmentalism instead of Windup Girl and Shockwave Rider for hacking and computer worms. Writer must be youngish. I'm only 39, but I grew up reading my father's SF library.
 
2017-06-17 11:54:23 PM  

enry: Whoever decided that Sci Fi and Fantasy should go together deserves a kick in the crotch.

/Fantasy sucks
//and I'm sure you (yes you) are there saying "No way, Sci Fi is the one that's terrible!"


They're essentially the same genre, Sparky. Just take Clarke's Third Law and expand it a bit.
 
2017-06-17 11:55:22 PM  

Forbidden Doughnut: [t2.gstatic.com image 430x648]

This one should be in the top 10, IMHO.

/ anyone who's played "Fallout" will recognize its influence....


Iguana on a stick makes a lot more sense now..But I'm not seeing much else unless you count the hubologists space ship.
 
2017-06-17 11:56:44 PM  
I'm surprised Dragonriders of Pern wasn't on there.  It pretty much standardized the new dragon mythos as wonderful beasts you could bond with and even ride, rather than mindless monsters
 
2017-06-17 11:57:32 PM  

Harlee: MightyPez: I only recently read the Forever War and really liked it. I followed it up with Way Station and found it just as enjoyable.

I love it when Amazon has crazy sales on books!

[img.fark.net image 300x499]
It will fark you up and exalt you at the same time.

https://www.amazon.com/We-All-Died-Breakaway-Station/dp/0099388804/ref​=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1497757767&sr=8-1&keywords=we+all+died+at+breakawa​y+station


Huh, no ebook. That's a rarity. I may need to get one of those analog dealies I see people using on the train
 
2017-06-17 11:59:23 PM  

Abe Vigoda's Ghost: optikeye: TedCruz'sCrazyDad: optikeye: Moon is a Harsh Mistress.
Made a change from 'pulp' juvenile stories to larger issues and had group marriages and blended families.


And for fantasy. The "Lion Witch and Wardrobe"  should be there and other CS Lewis books like Perelandra ...even more than Harry Potter.
And WTF? No John Carter of Mars? No Tarzan?  No Lewis Carol?
Tell you what get back to me a hundred years and tell me of ANYTHING from Potterverse (And I love HP books) has same type of impact as Lewis Carol. Phrases "we've gone through the looking glass" "All the Kings Men" "down the rabbit hole" "Mad Tea Party" that are in our cultural DNA we often don't even recognize the source.


I think at least one Phillip K Dick book should make the list.

His short stories mostly changed Hollywood. I mean 90 percent of SF movies now are mostly based on a actually PKD story and want to be a PKD story.

He had a lot of great ideas, but was not a great writer.
You'll notice that the movies are loosely based on his books.


I think Man in the High Castle ( Hugo winner in 1963 ) is a superior example of science fiction writing.
 
2017-06-18 12:04:35 AM  
img.fark.net
 
2017-06-18 12:06:32 AM  

New Farkin User Name: enry: Whoever decided that Sci Fi and Fantasy should go together deserves a kick in the crotch.

/Fantasy sucks
//and I'm sure you (yes you) are there saying "No way, Sci Fi is the one that's terrible!"

They're essentially the same genre, Sparky. Just take Clarke's Third Law and expand it a bit.


The funny thing is, intellectually I know this. But I always had an affinity for scifi and find fantasy utterly boring. I get why Neil Gaiman is an incredibly talented writer, but I walked away from Sandman appreciating the effort, but in the end finding it a little dull. The thought of re-reading or re-watching Lord of the Rings (or The Hobbit) fills me with dread.

But man I could go through Frank Herbet's Dune series over and over. And no, I never bothered with the Brian Herbert stuff. And from what I have heard, I'm the better for it.
 
2017-06-18 12:07:52 AM  

TuteTibiImperes: optikeye: Moon is a Harsh Mistress.
Made a change from 'pulp' juvenile stories to larger issues and had group marriages and blended families.

I liked that one.  I need to check out some other Heinlein stuff.  I've watched the Starship Troopers movie, but never read the book, and I see the list mentions Stranger in a Strange Land, I suppose that should also be on my list.


Heinlein went downhill fast in the last 3-4 novels. Read them in the order they were written, if you can. The short stories are mostly excellent.  TMiaHM is probably my favourite of his.
 
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