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Who are the best science fiction/fantasy authors?
5/22/ | Myself

Posted on 05/23/2008 10:02:34 AM PDT by GSWarrior

There must be a lot of SF fans here. Who are you favorite authors or books? What are you currently reading?

I enjoy SF books that focus on character development over hard scifi themes. Robert Silverberg, IMO, is about the best there is. I also enjoy Gardner Duzois' short stories--some gut-wrenching stuff. Jack Vance's are also very entertaining. Orson Scott Card is pretty good too.

I am currently reading Altered Carbon, by Richard Morgan...it's kind of slow and hard to follow. Not likely to read his other novels.

I have enjoyed some, but not all, of Niven and Pournelle's works.


TOPICS: Books/Literature
KEYWORDS: fantasy; fantasysf; literature; scifi; sf
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1 posted on 05/23/2008 10:02:34 AM PDT by GSWarrior
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To: GSWarrior

Tolkien


2 posted on 05/23/2008 10:03:19 AM PDT by americanophile
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To: GSWarrior

A word of caution, 90% of them are crud. 90% of EVERYTHING is crud (Sturgeon’s Law).


3 posted on 05/23/2008 10:05:33 AM PDT by weegee (We cant keep our homes on 72 at all times & just expect that other countries are going to say OK -BO)
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To: GSWarrior

Three I can recommend wholeheartedly are Lois McMasters Bujold, Eric Flint, and John Ringo.

Ringo’s “The Last Centurion” rocks.


4 posted on 05/23/2008 10:05:41 AM PDT by No Truce With Kings (The opinions expressed are mine! Mine! MINE! All Mine!)
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To: GSWarrior; SunkenCiv
Ray Bradbury.

To SC: < |:P~

5 posted on 05/23/2008 10:06:09 AM PDT by martin_fierro (< |:)~)
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To: GSWarrior
Clarke
Heinlein
Asimov
Niven
Pournelle
James P. Hogan
Cook
Feintuch
Gerrold
Herbert


just to name a few...
6 posted on 05/23/2008 10:07:04 AM PDT by The Louiswu (Just say NO... to Hillary and O'Bama)
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To: GSWarrior

Asimov, Bradbury, Herbert (Dune)


7 posted on 05/23/2008 10:07:11 AM PDT by contemplator (Capitalism gets no Rock Concerts)
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To: No Truce With Kings

I loved the Posleen war series of John Ringo, one of my all-time favorite novels.


8 posted on 05/23/2008 10:07:15 AM PDT by Brett66 (Where government advances, and it advances relentlessly , freedom is imperiled -Janice Rogers Brown)
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To: GSWarrior
I asked a similar question on another board recently. Got a lot of interesting answers.

Anyway, I like Asimov. I can get through Heinlein. I'm currently enjoying Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card, and I've previously read his "Pastwatch", which I liked, too.

Just finished "2001" and it was sleep-inducing. "3001" was better, but not exactly a great read. (I haven't read the others.)

Fantasy, I liked the late David Gemmel's stuff. Lord of the Rings is a must-read if you wish to have a conversation with anyone on the topic of fantasy (and Harry Potter is/will be joining that).

Never read any of "The Wheel of Time" and I don't intend to.

Whoops. There's the bell. Gotta go. More later.

9 posted on 05/23/2008 10:07:29 AM PDT by Tanniker Smith ("We have top men working on it." "Who?" "Top. Men.")
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To: GSWarrior

Robert A. Heinlein


10 posted on 05/23/2008 10:07:34 AM PDT by Lancey Howard
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To: GSWarrior
I haven't read my Sci-fi/Fantasy in quite a while, but among my tops would be:


11 posted on 05/23/2008 10:07:49 AM PDT by mykroar (Repentence and Faith.)
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To: GSWarrior
Harry Turtledove

John Birmingham

Robert Heinlein

Orson Scott Card

12 posted on 05/23/2008 10:07:52 AM PDT by buccaneer81 (Bob Taft has soiled the family name for the next century.)
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To: GSWarrior; Borges

Thomas Ligotti and Jorge Luis Borges.


13 posted on 05/23/2008 10:08:23 AM PDT by wideawake (Why is it that those who call themselves Constitutionalists know the least about the Constitution?)
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To: GSWarrior

E.E. “Doc” Smith. Heinlein. Barbara Hambly. Linnea Sinclair. Asimov. Clarke. David Weber. In any order :)


14 posted on 05/23/2008 10:08:30 AM PDT by mewzilla (In politics the middle way is none at all. John Adams)
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To: GSWarrior
If you liked Pournelle's military SF, you will probably like David Drake and John Ringo

Let's not forget Robert Heinlein. While some of his post-stroke fiction was below par, "The Moon is a Harsh Mistress" was a classic

15 posted on 05/23/2008 10:08:58 AM PDT by PapaBear3625 ("In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act." -- George Orwell)
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To: contemplator

Asimov had some pretty good characters, such as those in the “Foundation” and “I, Robot” series of books.

Too bad the man was a raving, Kool-Aid drinking leftist...


16 posted on 05/23/2008 10:09:43 AM PDT by ssaftler
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To: PapaBear3625

Of all the Heinlein books I have read I enjoyed Moon the most.


17 posted on 05/23/2008 10:10:41 AM PDT by GSWarrior
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To: GSWarrior

C.S. Lewis.. “Screwtape Letters” is the ultimate Sci-Fi..


18 posted on 05/23/2008 10:11:16 AM PDT by hosepipe (CAUTION: This propaganda is laced with hyperbole....)
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To: Tanniker Smith

I enjoyed Pastwatch immensely. Great book.


19 posted on 05/23/2008 10:11:55 AM PDT by GSWarrior
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To: GSWarrior

Roger Zelazny (I belive he is now deceased) has several extremely entertaining works out.


20 posted on 05/23/2008 10:12:16 AM PDT by willgolfforfood
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To: GSWarrior
The three greatest fantasy authors of all time, without question, are:

Al Gore
L. Ron Hubbard
Joseph Smith

21 posted on 05/23/2008 10:13:13 AM PDT by NewJerseyJoe (Rat mantra: "Facts are meaningless! You can use facts to prove anything that's even remotely true!")
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To: GSWarrior

Stephen Donaldson’s 3 Thomas Covenant series (First Chronicles, Second Chronicles, Final Chronicles)—3 books in each set. Lots of sci-fi/fantasy along the lines of Tolkien, but with a modern twist...he also wrote futuristic sci-fi space operas, which I really didn’t care much for, but some people seem to like it.

Anne McAffrey’s PERN/Dragon Riders series (many many books) which her son has now taken over writing. Again, sci-fi, some space opera stuff, fantasy stuff. Very good series too!

Of course, pretty much everything by Ray Bradbury.


22 posted on 05/23/2008 10:13:33 AM PDT by pillut48 (CJ in TX --Soccer Mom and proud Rush Conservative with no dog in the presidential race now *sigh*)
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To: GSWarrior

The recently departed Robert Jordan (The Eye of the World series and others).


23 posted on 05/23/2008 10:14:20 AM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet (McCain could never convince me to vote for him. Only Hillary or Obama can!)
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To: GSWarrior
I recommend this book...if you can find it.
24 posted on 05/23/2008 10:14:36 AM PDT by GSWarrior
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To: ssaftler
Asimov had some pretty good characters, such as those in the “Foundation” and “I, Robot” series of books. Too bad the man was a raving, Kool-Aid drinking leftist... atheist!!!
25 posted on 05/23/2008 10:14:40 AM PDT by night reader (NRA Life Member since 1962)
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To: americanophile

I agree with many of the names listed so far. I would add Gene Wolfe. His Book of the New Sun series is among my favorites.


26 posted on 05/23/2008 10:16:10 AM PDT by shempy
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To: GSWarrior

The Forever War by Joe W Haldeman is a fantastic book

The Amber Series by Zelazny is great too.


27 posted on 05/23/2008 10:16:18 AM PDT by rivercat (The first thing we do, let's kill all the lawyers. - William Shakespeare)
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To: GSWarrior

David Weber, for his strongly themed stories of the struggle of good against evil. He’s not afraid to describe evil in terms of collectivism and tyranny. And he does a damn good job of it.

Plus, nobody does space battles as well as he does, IMHO.

For sheer wonder, try Sean Williams and Shane Dix’ Geodesica series. Greg Bear, with his Eon/Eternity series is also one of my favorites.

Most anything by Charles Stross makes for great reading.


28 posted on 05/23/2008 10:17:47 AM PDT by Noumenon (The only thing that prevents liberals from loading us all into cattle cars is the power to do it)
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To: GSWarrior

I’m partial to Heinlein. Job is one of the best SF works ever IMO.


29 posted on 05/23/2008 10:17:52 AM PDT by Squawk 8888 (TSA and DHS are jobs programs for people who are not smart enough to flip burgers)
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To: GSWarrior
George R.R. Martin's series that starts with “A Game of Thrones”.

Edgar Rice Burroughs “A Princess of Mars”, “The Gods of Mars” and “The Warlord of Mars” (ERB is more famous for Tarzan, but John Carter of Mars is one of the best SciFi series ever, very anti-Communist, anti-racist, very “this is what it means to be a MAN.”).

Also Scott Lynch's “The Lies of Locke Lamorah”, an amazing first book by a promising new author. Check it out!

30 posted on 05/23/2008 10:18:08 AM PDT by allmendream (Life begins at the moment of contraception. ;))
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To: GSWarrior
If you like military science fiction, try the Honor Harrington series by David Weber. The first one is On Basilisk Station, available FREE! at www.baen.com. There are many other books in the Baen Free Library, and sample chapters from the current line are available too.
31 posted on 05/23/2008 10:18:55 AM PDT by nina0113 (If fences don't work, why does the White House have one?)
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To: Tanniker Smith

Asimov is a great storyteller but I find his penchant for social engineering to be more than a little off-putting.


32 posted on 05/23/2008 10:19:37 AM PDT by Squawk 8888 (TSA and DHS are jobs programs for people who are not smart enough to flip burgers)
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To: GSWarrior
Neal Stephenson.

I cannot recommend him highly enough.

CyberPunk and historical fiction/fantasy.

A solid conservative!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neal_Stephenson

33 posted on 05/23/2008 10:20:50 AM PDT by Unassuaged (I have shocking data relevant to the conversation!)
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To: GSWarrior

Oops - can’t leave out Iain M Banks.

Against a Dark Background
The Player of Games
Consider Phlebas
Look to Windward
Use of Weapons

Home runs, all of them. Just re-read Consider Phlebas - every bit as goos as the first time around.


34 posted on 05/23/2008 10:21:19 AM PDT by Noumenon (The only thing that prevents liberals from loading us all into cattle cars is the power to do it)
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To: nina0113
"Honor Harrington series"
I got through 9 of them before I gave up (took a break) - really good but I needed something a little lighter...
35 posted on 05/23/2008 10:21:31 AM PDT by The Louiswu (Just say NO... to Hillary and O'Bama)
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To: GSWarrior

I haven’t read any of his SF titles, but Harry Turtledove’s alternate histories are quite good.


36 posted on 05/23/2008 10:21:49 AM PDT by Squawk 8888 (TSA and DHS are jobs programs for people who are not smart enough to flip burgers)
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To: GSWarrior
James P. Hogan
Inherit the Stars and Gentle Giants of Ganymede - a very good read with a happy ending. Reminded me of Clarke or old Heinlein.
37 posted on 05/23/2008 10:22:47 AM PDT by The Louiswu (Just say NO... to Hillary and O'Bama)
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To: hosepipe
C.S. Lewis.. “Screwtape Letters” is the ultimate Sci-Fi..

a friend and i were just discussing Screwtape Letters yesterday... she is reading it for the first time... C.S. Lewis was certainly ingenious... so creative and clever in this writing...

38 posted on 05/23/2008 10:23:18 AM PDT by latina4dubya
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To: PapaBear3625

I hated “The moon Is a Harsh Mistress”.. However, “Glory Road” in great. And, if I were to be limited to ONE SF Book on a desert island, “Starship Troopers” would have to make the short list.


39 posted on 05/23/2008 10:23:24 AM PDT by chesley (Where's the omelet? -- Orwell)
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To: The Louiswu

I loved Lucifer’s Hammer, Footfall, and The Mote In God’s Eye but I hated the Gripping Hand...only read the first 100 pages and had to set it aside.


40 posted on 05/23/2008 10:23:51 AM PDT by GSWarrior
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To: GSWarrior

In terms of Fantasy..

Weis & Hickman and Tad Williams


41 posted on 05/23/2008 10:24:46 AM PDT by HamiltonJay
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To: NewJerseyJoe

Al Gore isn’t in the same class as the other two. They made their stuff up by themselves. Al Gore just hitched a ride on a wagon already moving, and became the driver.


42 posted on 05/23/2008 10:25:15 AM PDT by chesley (Where's the omelet? -- Orwell)
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To: GSWarrior
A new player with a nice old style
Orphanage by Robert Buettner - this is now a 3 book series with the 4th coming in November.
43 posted on 05/23/2008 10:25:15 AM PDT by The Louiswu (Just say NO... to Hillary and O'Bama)
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To: Unassuaged

Is Terry Pratchett worthwhile? I get a sense he is anti-religion. Not sure I want to read him.


44 posted on 05/23/2008 10:26:22 AM PDT by GSWarrior
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To: GSWarrior
Lois McMaster Bujold - the Vorkosigan books. Start with Shards of Honor then Barrayar. Work through in order. The Chalion books are fantasy, pretty good but not as good as the Vorkosigan books, and the Sharing Knife series is merely competent fantasy.

I love the Man-Kzin War series.

And Prayers for the Assassin by Robert Ferrigno. Sequel was good and a third is coming out.

Orson Scott Card's Alvin the Maker series.

And I still have a soft spot for Podkayne of Mars.

Here's a question - what are the biggest unanticipated changes in SF, from 70, 50, 30 years ago? I vote for the changed role of women, and the ubiquity of computers, as opposed to robots.

45 posted on 05/23/2008 10:26:56 AM PDT by heartwood
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To: GSWarrior
Another vote for Niven and Pournelle, particularly their early stuff (e.g., Niven's Known Space, The Mote in God's Eye, Pournelle's King David's Spaceship). I tend to read oddball stuff by second-tier authors so I'm not sure I can give you a useful list, but I do enjoy character development so maybe this will be useful. Some authors I've enjoyed include Cynthia Felice, Wayland Drew, Paul O. Williams, Richard S. McEnroe, Margaret Davis, and George R. R. Martin and Lisa Tuttle's book Windhaven. Most of those authors are out of print, though Windhaven was recently republished, as was Paul O. Williams post-holocaust Pelbar Cycle. From a fantasy angle, take a look at George R. R. Martin's A Song of Fire and Ice series and Holly Lisle.
46 posted on 05/23/2008 10:27:11 AM PDT by Question_Assumptions
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To: GSWarrior

anybody here ever read The Master and Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov? very strange... very Russian...


47 posted on 05/23/2008 10:27:31 AM PDT by latina4dubya
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To: GSWarrior

All of them! :)


48 posted on 05/23/2008 10:28:32 AM PDT by Species8472 (He who can lead you to believe an absurdity, can lead you to commit an atrocity)
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To: Squawk 8888

I used to like Turtledove until I read his World War series. I haven’t read anything by him since.

Was there ever a more loathsome protagonist than Sam Yeager?


49 posted on 05/23/2008 10:28:59 AM PDT by chesley (Where's the omelet? -- Orwell)
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To: GSWarrior

R.A. Lafferty, Theodore Sturgeon, Robert Aickman.


50 posted on 05/23/2008 10:29:40 AM PDT by Rocko ( "Where's the global warming? It's freezing in here." -- Bob Dylan)
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