seawasp (seawasp) wrote,
seawasp
seawasp

That SF/F list, you know the one...

SO I do the meme... Bold the ones you've read. I may add notes.



1. The Lord Of The Rings Trilogy, by J.R.R. Tolkien : I know some people who hate this one, but I feel any fan of fantasy should at least give it a good try. You don't have to finish it -- I'm no evangelical on this matter.

2. The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy, by Douglas Adams: Read it and the next two, came to the conclusion that everything worthwhile he'd pretty much done to death in the first book. KTHXBYE.

3. Ender's Game, by Orson Scott Card: A really good book IMCGO, and also one of my favorite thought experiments for exploding the Chinese Room.

4. The Dune Chronicles, by Frank Herbert: What do they mean "Chronicles"? There was a marvelous book called "Dune". I love that book. Wish he could've written a sequel or two.

5. A Song Of Ice And Fire Series, by George R. R. Martin: Judging from the buzz, never likely to read it, either. Don't like people killing off the characters I like, at least not often.

6. 1984, by George Orwell: Blame high school for this one. Member of my elite "Bounce" category.

7. Fahrenheit 451, by Ray Bradbury: tried this one, didn't get far.

8. The Foundation Trilogy, by Isaac Asimov: Read the first three and some of the follow-ons. He should've stuck to the first three

9. Brave New World, by Aldous Huxley: Read it, didn't find it particularly good OR bad.

10. American Gods, by Neil Gaiman: Not yet. Maybe one day.

11. The Princess Bride, by William Goldman: Book and movie are both good.

12. The Wheel Of Time Series, by Robert Jordan: I read the first book, then just never got around to the others, finally realized he either had no idea where he was going or was deliberately stretching the hell out of it so there was no point.

13. Animal Farm, by George Orwell: Again, blame school for this one. I don't think this one QUITE bounced but it was close.

14. Neuromancer, by William Gibson: Of the trilogy I preferred Mona Lisa Overdrive. I wish Gibson were as edgy and prescient as he gets credit for.

15. Watchmen, by Alan Moore: Pretty impressive, though that huge plot hole kinda detracts from it overall.

16. I, Robot, by Isaac Asimov: Interesting -- this isn't a novel, a collection of short stories.

17. Stranger In A Strange Land, by Robert Heinlein: Read it, as I've read almost everything by RAH (except the posthumous novel). I consider SiaSL to be the book that first shows the clear signs of the cliff his writing was about to drop off of.

18. The Kingkiller Chronicles, by Patrick Rothfuss

19. Slaughterhouse-Five, by Kurt Vonnegut

20. Frankenstein, by Mary Shelley: read it a LONG time ago.

21. Do Androids Dream Of Electric Sheep?, by Philip K. Dick: I've read some other things by him but I don't think that was one of them.

22. The Handmaid's Tale, by Margaret Atwood

23. The Dark Tower Series, by Stephen King: Read the first one, started the second, decided I didn't care. The "Hey Jude" really put me off in the first book and as soon as I came across it again I was outta there.

24. 2001: A Space Odyssey, by Arthur C. Clarke: Book much better than movie. Yes, they were done at the same time but Clarke's a better writer than Kubrick was a filmmaker, at least for this one.

25. The Stand, by Stephen King: Both versions. This is one of the King books I consider a coulda-been. It was ALMOST really really good, but blew it in a couple places. Why it rates so highly I don't know.

26. Snow Crash, by Neal Stephenson: A damn fine book! I loved this one.

27. The Martian Chronicles, by Ray Bradbury: Not my favorite Bradbury, but I did read it.

28. Cat's Cradle, by Kurt Vonnegut

29. The Sandman Series, by Neil Gaiman: I should probably read this sometime. It sounds interesting.

30. A Clockwork Orange,
by Anthony Burgess: Tried, stopped after some time. Movie sucked too.

31. Starship Troopers, by Robert Heinlein: One of RAH's best, at least IMCGO. I've read this one several times, as compared with SiaSL which I read, I think, twice.

32. Watership Down, by Richard Adams: What amazes ME is that there are people who don't consider this fantasy. I mean, you have rabbits with a complex civilization, legends, old tales, active gods, and rabbits that not only talk but form clear plans and understand the rudiments of technology!

33. Dragonflight, by Anne McCaffrey: I had fun reading these, back in the day. I missed certain Unfortunate Implications entirely. This is something I'm very good at, which allows me to enjoy books I might not otherwise.

34. The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress, by Robert Heinlein: Possibly the best of his novels aside from his juveniles, which deserve high places on the list.

35. A Canticle For Leibowitz, by Walter M. Miller: I've READ it but I don't remember much about it, beyond the illuminated manuscript that's actually a circuit diagram.

36. The Time Machine, by H.G. Wells: One of Wells' deserved entries, for one of the subgenres he essentially invented.

37. 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea, by Jules Verne: And followed by Verne's seminal super-science work. Do not -- I cannot emphasize this strongly enough, DO NOT read any of the earlier translations, or editions based off them. The 1993 Naval Institute translation with annotations is my favorite, though I've been told there are a couple other recent good ones. All the older ones were apparently based off of one or two translations which were not only of mediocre quality, but censored/cut up to ONE QUARTER of the original work.

38. Flowers For Algernon, by Daniel Keys: God I hated this one.

39. The War Of The Worlds, by H.G. Wells: And here Wells gets his second founding work, this time in the Alien Invasion subgenre.

40. The Chronicles Of Amber, by Roger Zelazny: Ha! I voted for this one. A deserved high place for one of the most imaginative concepts I've ever read. This thing had sensawunda in ton-lots, along with a Noir flair that made it pretty unusual.

41. The Belgariad, by David Eddings: I *think* I started this once but I can't for the life of me remember.

42. The Mists Of Avalon, by Marion Zimmer Bradley: I've read OTHER stuff by MZB, but not this one.

43. The Mistborn Series, by Brandon Sanderson: Never heard of it, actually.

44. Ringworld, by Larry Niven: A very good book, but shame about the sequels.

45. The Left Hand Of Darkness, by Ursula K. LeGuin: Like MZB, I've read others by her but not this one. I did try once but bounced off it. (this is NOT the same as being in the Bounce category)

46. The Silmarillion, by J.R.R. Tolkien: I love this kind of stuff. Other people hate it.

47. The Once And Future King, by T.H. White: Much better than the Disney version.

48. Neverwhere, by Neil Gaiman: Gaiman again, and again, nope.

49. Childhood's End, by Arthur C. Clarke:
 This one didn't QUITE make it into the bounce category, but it came close. Hated it.

50. Contact, by Carl Sagan: Surprisingly good, I thought. His trick at the end annoys mathematicians, though.

51. The Hyperion Cantos, by Dan Simmons: I read Hyperion, started the next one, said the eight deadly words. I don't even quite know why I finished the first one. Perhaps it's because I was hoping for more Shrike and less wangst. It would definitely have been better with Daleks.

52. Stardust, by Neil Gaiman: You hound me, Gaiman! But you have yet to capture me!

53. Cryptonomicon, by Neal Stephenson: No, haven't read that one.

54. World War Z, by Max Brooks: No, and unlikely to. Zombies, not my thing at all.

55. The Last Unicorn, by Peter S. Beagle: I really DO have to get around to this one sometime.

56. The Forever War, by Joe Haldeman: I read this, and I remember ABSOLUTELY NOTHING about it. Not a blessed thing. Maybe it's protective amnesia.

57. Small Gods, by Terry Pratchett: Pratchett does not work for me at all. I've read three Pratchetts plus one short story someone pushed at me, and they're all like "and? It's not particularly funny and I can't take it seriously, either."

58. The Chronicles Of Thomas Covenant, The Unbeliever, by Stephen R. Donaldson: A surprising series. At the VERY EDGE of my tolerance, I finished the first trilogy, dragged through all the Covenant scenes by the Land itself and the other characters. Then in the second trilogy Covenant's first words to Lord Foul *made my day*. I haven't yet dared get any of the later add-ons; I'm afraid of what he's going to do to the Land THIS time.

59. The Vorkosigan Saga, by Lois McMaster Bujold : I've read a couple books in this series. It's pretty good, but it didn't grab me by the throat and force me to read more.

60. Going Postal, by Terry Pratchett: See above RE Pratchett.

61. The Mote In God's Eye, by Larry Niven & Jerry Pournelle: Damn yes. One of the best First Contact stories ever.

62. The Sword Of Truth, by Terry Goodkind: Nope.

63. The Road, by Cormac McCarthy: I think I've HEARD of this, but nothing else.

64. Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell, by Susanna Clarke: My brain insists on making it "Mrs. Norrell" for some reason. In any event, never read it.

65. I Am Legend, by Richard Matheson: Read it, wasn't terribly bad.

66. The Riftwar Saga, by Raymond E. Feist

67. The Shannara Trilogy, by Terry Brooks: Read it, and the next four, and other things by Terry. I'm one of the few vocal defenders of this one I know. I like Terry's writing style and Shannara grew as he told it. The first trilogy also has Garet Jax, one of the ultimate of all badasses in fiction.

68. The Conan The Barbarian Series, by R.E. Howard: By CROM! Accept no imitations!

69. The Farseer Trilogy, by Robin Hobb: Heard of it, never read it.

70. The Time Traveler's Wife, by Audrey Niffenegger: Ditto

71. The Way Of Kings, by Brandon Sanderson: Not even sure I've heard of it.

72. A Journey To The Center Of The Earth, by Jules Verne: Indeed, and a lot of fun. I've referenced it in my own books twice.

73. The Legend Of Drizzt Series, by R.A. Salvatore: Nope.

74. Old Man's War, by John Scalzi

75. The Diamond Age, by Neil Stephenson

76. Rendezvous With Rama, by Arthur C. Clarke: I liked this one. Shame about the sequels. Have I said that before?

77. The Kushiel's Legacy Series, by Jacqueline Carey

78. The Dispossessed, by Ursula K. LeGuin: Read it, didn't care for it.

79. Something Wicked This Way Comes, by Ray Bradbury: THIS is my favorite Bradbury.

80. Wicked, by Gregory Maguire: Started it, realized I was reading an unclean abomination upon the earth, washed my hands afterwards.

81. The Malazan Book Of The Fallen Series, by Steven Erikson

82. The Eyre Affair, by Jasper Fforde

83. The Culture Series, by Iain M. Banks

84. The Crystal Cave, by Mary Stewart

85. Anathem, by Neal Stephenson

86. The Codex Alera Series, by Jim Butcher: Read some of the Dresden series but not this.

87. The Book Of The New Sun, by Gene Wolfe

88. The Thrawn Trilogy, by Timothy Zahn: 
One of the truly great villains of fiction, in true space-opera style.

89. The Outlander Series, by Diana Gabaldan: Holy crud. Isn't this the Massive Romance Novel series featuring a time-travelling girl meeting a character originally based off of Jamie MacCrimmon, former companion of the Second Doctor?

90. The Elric Saga, by Michael Moorcock: Read one or two. Elric's too much of a dick to spend time with.

91. The Illustrated Man, by Ray Bradbury: Didn't read this one.

92. Sunshine, by Robin McKinley

93. A Fire Upon The Deep, by Vernor Vinge: One of the New Sensawunda books, and one of the few books I've EVER read, then IMMEDIATELY started reading again. I think the sequel was BETTER.

94. The Caves Of Steel, by Isaac Asimov: The defining SF mystery, and one of my favorites.

95. The Mars Trilogy, by Kim Stanley Robinson

96. Lucifer's Hammer, by Larry Niven & Jerry Pournelle: Okay -- nothing N&P wrote in their heyday was unreadable -- but Footfall covered a lot of the same ground a lot better.

97. Doomsday Book, by Connie Willis

98. Perdido Street Station, by China Mieville

99. The Xanth Series, by Piers Anthony: not the WHOLE series. The first four or five; after that it was clear he wasn't going to go anywhere but down. The basic Anthony rule: first book is probably worth reading, but go no more than two more after that.

100. The Space Trilogy
, by C.S. Lewis: Read part of it; didn't hook me. OTOH, I love Narnia and the Screwtape Letters.



Of course the true tragedy is that *I* am nowhere on that list. 
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