Richard Richard's Comments (member since Mar 23, 2009)

Richard's comments from the SciFi and Fantasy Book Club group.

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Jan 23, 2015 12:39AM

1865 Thanks Kim, much appreciated.
Jan 22, 2015 04:36PM

1865 I've just had a look through our Listopia list And I'm a little concerned that the list now shows 190 books whereas there are only 175 books on the clubs 'read' shelf. I definitely don't remember the club reading all of the Harry Potter books, therefore I have a sneaky suspicion that someone has mistakenly added their faves onto the list.

Kim, any chance of sorting the list out for us, I certainly use it to keep a running total of how many club books I've managed.

Favourite Quotes (28 new)
Dec 06, 2014 02:13PM

1865 From Marvin:

"Pardon me for breathing, which I never do anyway so I don't know why I bother to say it, oh God I'm so depressed. "

Can't help but hear Steven Moore's fantastic delivery. Almost all of my favourite quotes come from Marvin purely because of Steven Moore in the Radio Series, taken out of context they are just meaningless. Classic example from the Christmas special that linked the first and second series, Marvin in the head offices of Megadodo Publications on Ursa Minor:

"Hello Lift"

Cracks me up every time, but see what I mean out of context.
1865 MK wrote: "The Android's Dream by John Scalzi The Android's Dream by John Scalzi

A human diplomat creates an interstellar incident when he kills an alien diplomat in a most unusua..."

Thanks for the heads up. Just downloaded and listened to chapter one. My first foray into the world of audiobooks, very entertaining indeed.
1865 I've heard of Lord Dunsany. Never read anything by him though.

Didn't even manage to get a tenth of the way through part one of this epic. I think I preferred James May when he was setting fire to caravans on Top Gear. ;-)
Apr 11, 2014 01:21PM

1865 MK wrote: "What edition are you guys reading?

I have the Project Gutenberg ebook, and the Goodreads online feedbooks edition. Both say west ... although, both might be the same thing, for all I know! I don'..."

Just had a look at my Kindle edition and the Goodreads App ebook version, and they both have the same intro. This intro seems to contradict itself a little in that we are told that the 'Lady Vain' was lost at 107W, Prendick was picked up at 101W but "passed out of human knowledge" at 105E.
The project gutenberg on-line text has the same intro.

So either a slip on Herbert George's part or I'm missing something here.
Mar 21, 2014 12:57AM

1865 Coralie wrote: "I'm now up to 109."

Way to go Coralie. Only 50 shy of the club's bookshelves total!
Mar 20, 2014 10:23AM

1865 Couple of reads and a free add, though still a fairly recent read, has now taken me up to 72.
Might get stuck there for a while I'm afraid.
Which one first? (12 new)
Mar 15, 2014 10:07AM

1865 Dick and Mieville can't really usually be called easy reads, so between Wool and Leviathan Wakes I'd go for Wool first as it is in a more serialised form making it that little bit easier to get into without having to commit to the longhaul before you get a good payoff. Just my thoughts, others may of course differ.
1865 Not been a huge Gaiman fan in the past, American Gods and Good Omens: The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter, Witch being the only previous books I'd read by him, which were Ok but didn't make a big impression on me.
This little book however made a very large impression. Quiet yet shocking, simple yet subtly complex, charming and chilling at the same time. I doubt if there was much new for the genre in here but the storytelling style had me captured and wouldn't let go until I'd finished in one sitting. A very rare occurrence indeed for me.
Being a Dad of a 7 and 5 year old, living in rural England made it very easy to relate to all the characters in this little piece. Not quite 5 stars, but very nearly, the story seemed a bit too small for the full blown 'that was Amazing', but the style and feel of it gets pretty close for me.
Maybe I won't write Gaiman off just yet, he seems to be able to produce very varied works, and variety as they say is the Spice of Life.
Dec 28, 2013 02:40PM

1865 Checking out the bookclub list while thinking about the 2014 challenge.

Now up to 69

Still not counting that dreadful Dr Who book we attempted as a group.
Unfortunately we keep adding books faster than I can read them.

(Sorry about the Bill and Ted reference)
1865 Smallo wrote: "If remember correctly zombies in immortality inc. are minority group openly struggling for zombie rights. So broadly seek stories along that line...main premise is general homosapien population kno..."

Telepaths used as Police is a well trodden path but done very early and brilliantly in The Demolished Man by Alfred Bester. Pretty well regarded as a Classic in the genre for a multiple of reasons.
I can't recommend it highly enough.
Environment... (10 new)
Sep 25, 2013 04:48AM

1865 Try The Windup Girl by Paolo Bacigalupi. His setting is a fascinating post-scarcity Bangkok where calories are scarce and in the wider world all food production is tightly controlled by the calorie companies.
Very atmospheric and nicely written and imagined. Well worth a try.
Aug 20, 2013 04:31PM

1865 Pure parallel worlds from the old school with Ring Around the Sun by Clifford D. Simak. Might seem a bit dated and pastoral now but still a fine piece of work.

Alternate history with a hint of parallel worlds is the brilliant Pavane by Keith Roberts. Appears in David Pringle's 100 best SF novels and one of my favourites too.
Apr 30, 2013 03:15AM

1865 Kim wrote: "By the way Richard what is Campbellian SF?"

I was thinking of books heavily influenced or inspired by the late legendary editor of Astounding Science Fiction John W. Campbell. Would include authors such as Poul Anderson, Isaac Asimov, Alfred Bester, Hal Clement, Harry Harrison, Mack Reynolds, Clifford D. Simak and Theodore Sturgeon to name just a few.
By definition there could be a large crossover with the "Golden Age" theme.
Apr 29, 2013 04:26PM

1865 Showing my age now, but there's a good closed old thread where we all came up with a fair few ideas for themes. Thread ran for a couple of years and can be found here

My paltry contribution to it was this:

Sci Fi Exclusive Themes
Alternative History
Campbellian SF
Golden Age
Literary SF
New Wave
Space Opera

Psi or ESP
International (ie from a non English speaking part of the world)

There are a bunch of much better suggestions than mine on that old thread above, didn't seem fair to steal other peoples excellent ideas so posted the link instead.
Mar 25, 2013 08:46AM

1865 Thanks Kim. I love lists and putting ticks next to them!

Out of our read and currently reading shelves I've managed 60, or maybe 61 if we count a totally abortive attempt of the disaster that was our Dr Who pick. I've only got 3 of the rest on my TBR shelf.

I think my problem is I'm an awful bigot and usually end up not reading any of our Fantasy picks. Probably too stuck in my ways to change now, but I'll promise to try a little harder.
1865 As you mentioned the word 'embedded' could it be The Embedding by Ian Watson?
That's all about language. Don't remember all the details though, might be worth a look.
1865 Hrvoje wrote: "sounds a lot like it, I'll have to check it out and read it, but I think we're onto something ;)

Thank you Richard!"

If it is the one, and you like it, then you must check out his first book Only Forward. Dark and twisty, tech noir by the bucket load, fascinating and creepy as hell in parts. It's up there with my all time favourites, I consider it better than Spares, but that might just be me.
1865 Hrvoje wrote: "The genre is science fiction. I've read it in the late 90's. The book is set some time in the future. The target audience is undoubtedly adult.

We have a protagonist who is a war veteran, and also..."

The organ harvesting bit rang bells for me, and if I recall correctly the soldier stuff would fit as well with a book by one of my favourite authors.
Try Spares by Michael Marshall Smith.
Hope this is the one you were looking for.
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