Antenna (antennapedia) wrote,

Oh noes! SF novels I have read

From vampry via mireille719. The most significant SF/F novels from 1953-2006 according to Time. Bold the ones you have read, strikethrough the ones you read and hated, italicize those you started but never finished and put a star next to the ones you love.

1. The Lord of the Rings, J.R.R. Tolkien*
2. The Foundation Trilogy, Isaac Asimov
3. Dune, Frank Herbert
4. Stranger in a Strange Land, Robert A. Heinlein
5. A Wizard of Earthsea, Ursula K. Le Guin
6. Neuromancer, William Gibson
7. Childhood's End, Arthur C. Clarke
8. Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?, Philip K. Dick
9. The Mists of Avalon, Marion Zimmer Bradley
10. Fahrenheit 451, Ray Bradbury
11. The Book of the New Sun, Gene Wolfe
12. A Canticle for Leibowitz, Walter M. Miller, Jr.
13. The Caves of Steel, Isaac Asimov*
14. Children of the Atom, Wilmar Shiras
15. Cities in Flight, James Blish
16. The Colour of Magic, Terry Pratchett*
17. Dangerous Visions, edited by Harlan Ellison
18. Deathbird Stories, Harlan Ellison
19. The Demolished Man, Alfred Bester
20. Dhalgren, Samuel R. Delany
21. Dragonflight, Anne McCaffrey
22. Ender's Game, Orson Scott Card
23. The First Chronicles of Thomas Covenant the Unbeliever, Stephen R. Donaldson
24. The Forever War, Joe Haldeman*
25. Gateway, Frederik Pohl
26. Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, J.K. Rowling*
27. The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, Douglas Adams *
28. I Am Legend, Richard Matheson
29. Interview with the Vampire, Anne Rice
30. The Left Hand of Darkness, Ursula K. Le Guin
31. Little, Big, John Crowley
32. Lord of Light, Roger Zelazny
33. The Man in the High Castle, Philip K. Dick
34. Mission of Gravity, Hal Clement*
35. More Than Human, Theodore Sturgeon* (novella is better)
36. The Rediscovery of Man, Cordwainer Smith
37. On the Beach, Nevil Shute
38. Rendezvous with Rama, Arthur C. Clarke
39. Ringworld, Larry Niven*
40. Rogue Moon, Algis Budrys (isn't this a novella?)
41. The Silmarillion, J.R.R. Tolkien
42. Slaughterhouse-5, Kurt Vonnegut
43. Snow Crash, Neal Stephenson*
44. Stand on Zanzibar, John Brunner
45. The Stars My Destination, Alfred Bester*
46. Starship Troopers, Robert A. Heinlein
47. Stormbringer, Michael Moorcock
48. The Sword of Shannara, Terry Brooks
49. Timescape, Gregory Benford
50. To Your Scattered Bodies Go, Philip Jose Farmer

All of these are on the shelves in the house. If you want a strong education in SF&F, all you need do is camp out in our home for a year and read.

An odd list in some ways. I mean, why is LeGuin on there twice and Vernor Vinge not at all? But it covers most of the ground.

I've read some PKD (Valis, The transmigration of Timothy Archer), but not the ones they mention. I've read short stories by authors like Clarke, Moorcock, and Delany. It is my contention that SF is often at its strongest in shorter forms. For instance, the original novellas of "Ender's Game", "Baby is Three", "Rogue Moon", and the Lester Del Rey classic "Nerves" are all better than the novel versions. The short SF novels of Larry Niven are more fun & memorable than the four-digit-page-count lummoxes of Peter Hamilton. (I mean, I could probably recount the entire story of Protector to you in some embarrassing detail, but I can't remember a single damn thing that happened in that entire Hamilton novel I read last year. Uh, something about souls really existing?)

By skipping short stories, you also skip over some fantastic authors who wrote in the era of short stories. Like C. M. Kornbluth.
Tags: meme, science fiction
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