Friday 15 April 2016

I don't care about your vampire politics!

Just in case future historians perusing the blog archives - presumably trying to understand the terrible things I did to all those people - wonder why I suddenly started giving my impressions of books without pictures in them, I am attempting to read what are considered the 100 best sci-fi books of all time, but such a list is obviously a malleable and fluid thing, prone to late entries from fly-by-night flavors of the week, so I typed "100 greatest science fiction novels" into Google and picked a list from a random website - because there are a lot of top 100 lists and they don't all agree - and pasted it into a text file on my desktop and never looked back.
Although I probably should have looked back after reading the dreadfully dull Starship Troopers, though a rewatch of the film adaptation convinced me that science fiction was worth giving another go and I got stuck into the Foundation Trilogy and now A Princess of Mars, which is the tale of the enigmatic John Carter, whose first person account of his interplanetary travels never gets tired of telling you how awesomely manly he is - though to be fair he goes on to recount how he beat up the planet Mars, so I can sort of understand why the man would have a high opinion of himself.  He's a bit of an imperialist scumbag, too, smiting his way through the natives like a walking smallpox until he finds himself a bit of posh Martian tottie to lay some eggs with - but his tale is an enjoyable romp with some good world-building along the way, even if the politics of the text don't bear up to modern scrutiny.

Should you be wondering, the full list is as follows, with books I have managed to read so far being bolded - yeah I know there's only 12 of them so far, but I am reasonably sure I have actually read one or two of the others:

Frank Herbert - Dune
Orson Scott Card - Ender's Game
Isaac Asimov - The Foundation Trilogy
Douglas Adams - Hitch Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy
Robert A Heinlein - Stranger in a Strange Land
George Orwell - 1984
Ray Bradbury - Fahrenheit 451
Arthur C Clarke - 2001: A Space Odyssey
Philip K Dick - Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?
William Gibson - Neuromancer
Isaac Asimov - I, Robot
Robert A Heinlein - Starship Troopers
Larry Niven - Ringworld
Arthur C Clarke - Rendezvous With Rama
Dan Simmons - Hyperion
Joe Haldeman - The Forever War
Aldous Huxley - Brave New World
H G Wells - The Time Machine
Arthur C Clarke - Childhood's End
Robert A Heinlein - The Moon is a Harsh Mistress
H G Wells - The War of the Worlds
Ray Bradbury - The Martian Chronicles 
Kurt Vonnegut - Slaughterhouse Five
Ursula K Le Guin - The Left Hand of Darkness
Neal Stephenson - Snow Crash
Niven & Pournelle - The Mote in God's Eye
Orson Scott Card - Ender's Shadow
Orson Scott Card - Speaker for the Dead
Michael Crichton - Jurassic Park
Alfred Bester - The Stars My Destination
Philip K Dick - The Man in the High Castle   
Isaac Asimov - The Caves of Steel   
Frederik Pohl - Gateway   
Roger Zelazny - Lord of Light   
Stanislaw Lem - Solaris   
Jules Verne - 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea   
Michael Crichton - The Andromeda Strain   
Kurt Vonnegut - Cat's Cradle   
Philip K Dick - Ubik   
Carl Sagan - Contact   
Madeleine L'Engle - A Wrinkle In Time   
Isaac Asimov - The Gods Themselves   
John Wyndham - The Day of the Triffids   
Vernor Vinge - A Fire Upon the Deep 
Walter M Miller - A Canticle for Leibowitz   
Kim Stanley Robinson - Red Mars 
Anthony Burgess - A Clockwork Orange   
Robert A Heinlein - Time Enough For Love   
Ursula K Le Guin - The Dispossessed   
Isaac Asimov - The End of Eternity   
Mary Shelley - Frankenstein   
Daniel Keyes - Flowers for Algernon   
L Ron Hubbard - Battlefield Earth   
Jules Verne - Journey to the Center of the Earth   
Philip Jose Farmer - To Your Scattered Bodies Go   
Peter F Hamilton - The Reality Dysfunction 
Neal Stephenson - The Diamond Age   
Philip K Dick - A Scanner Darkly   
David Brin - Startide Rising
Kurt Vonnegut - The Sirens of Titan   
Margaret Atwood - The Handmaid's Tale
Greg Bear - Eon
Iain M Banks - Use of Weapons 
John Scalzi - Old Man's War 
Arthur C Clarke - The City and the Stars   
Michael Crichton - Sphere
Alfred Bester - The Demolished Man
Robert A Heinlein - The Door Into Summer
Alastair Reynolds - Revelation Space
Harry Harrison - The Stainless Steel Rat
Iain M Banks - Player of Games
Edgar Rice Burroughs - A Princess of Mars
Connie Willis - Doomsday Book
Cormac McCarthy - The Road
Robert A Heinlein - Citizen of the Galaxy
Gene Wolfe - The Fifth Head of Cerberus
C S Lewis - Out of the Silent Planet
Dan Simmons - Ilium
Philip K Dick - The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch
Richard Morgan - Altered Carbon
John Wyndham - The Chrysalids
Niven & Pournelle - Lucifer's Hammer   
Robert A Heinlein - Have Space-Suit - Will Travel   
Edwin A Abbott - Flatland   
Clifford Simak - Way Station   
Suzanne Collins - The Hunger Games   
Arkady & Boris Strugatsky - Roadside Picnic   
Ursula K Le Guin - The Lathe of Heaven   
John Brunner - Stand on Zanzibar    
Richard Matheson - I Am Legend    
Stanislaw Lem - The Cyberiad    
Neal Stephenson - Anathem    
Clifford Simak - City   
Julian May - The Many-Colored Land
Robert Louis Stevenson - Strange Case of Dr Jekyll & Mr Hyde   
Philip K Dick - VALIS    
Orson Scott Card - Xenocide 
David Brin - The Postman   
Theodore Sturgeon - More Than Human   
Arthur Conan Doyle - The Lost World

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