Sffgeek Sffgeek's Comments

Sffgeek's comments from the Sci Fi Aficionados group.

Note: Sffgeek is no longer a member of this group.

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48322 Traci wrote: "How much was it? I think I got most of mine for about $20. But I might not remember. I love Poul Anderson so tend to buy without thinking. They've been out for quite a bit so maybe that one is hard..."

Sorry, should have been specific, I'm talking mass-market paperback. Which is selling for more than the hardback!!

Geoff wrote: "If you read ebooks you can buy if for $6 from the publisher at www.baen.com"

No, I want to match the other volumes in the series on my book shelf. I like real books.
48322 The title says it all. This is the middle one of the first trilogy of re-prints. Does anyone know why it is the mass-market paperback so expensive?
Nov 08, 2011 01:26PM

48322 It is worth mentioning that of the 14 novels that won both Hugo and Nebula up to 1990 (which seems to be the Masterworks cut-off date), only 7 appear as Masterworks.
Of 28 that won only one of the awards, just 11 are Masterworks.
So by limiting ourselves to Masterworks we are losing the chance of about half of the best SF. But that is still a lot to go at...

(BTW Mark, I have an Excel spreadsheet I've compiled with this info on, if you need any help.)
Nov 02, 2011 10:04AM

48322 Edmond wrote: "Folks,

This may have been mentioned elsewhere but I'd like to point out the existence of a couple of interesting websites for those interested in SF. If you like hard science fiction Atomic Rockets is a must read..."

It certainly is! Thanks for that!
Oct 30, 2011 03:12AM

48322 To be honest, I would have thought most of the Hugo winners would be accessible by that age (I was reading them at 9). The real question is what is the objective of the reading list? Simple pleasure, appreciation of literary worth, or didactic moralising (though not, I hope, political correctness). All of these (and more) can be found in the genre.
Oct 24, 2011 07:18AM

48322 Kevin wrote: "Jack wrote: "I'd like to nominate On Basilisk Station by David Weber"
I don't think the group will read this because another group is doing a group read of the whole series..."

Which group?
48322 What are the rules on changing my vote? (I fancy Norstrilia even more than Terminal World.)
Oct 22, 2011 04:26AM

48322 It's interesting to see the effects of crowd sourcing on the average rating. Especially now we've seen the differences in approach from just the few people on this thread.

Doing a quick straw poll on my shelves. On my "to-read" shelf the ave ratings run from 3.38 to 4.40 (apart from one that only has two ratings). On my "possibles" shelf (= probably going to buy at some point) the range is very similar: 3.48 to 4.38. So if there are enough reviews, most books I'm interested in seem to end up in a range of 0.5 either side of 4.

On the other hand, my "not read" shelf (= books I bought (probably cheap) but may never get round to reading) the great majority have ratings in the range 3.00 to 4.1

So it looks like it comes down to half a star. Rated by a reasonably large number of people, most books will end up with 3 to 4.5 stars. The good ones will be 3.5 to 4.5, the less good will be 3.0 to 4.0. Of course there's that tricksy overlap from 3.5 to 4.0...

Incidentally, over 417 ratings I given an average of 3.73 - pretty much in the zone for GR as a whole, but high for the responders to this thread (see below). But, considering that I've given 5 stars 110 times, I look as though I give a much wider range than most people - more 5's but also more 1's and 2's.

Did a quick look at the last few posters on this thread. Avg ratings are:
Mark: 3.11
Richard: 3.37
J.P.: 3.48
CD: 3.49
Kathy: 3.50
sffgeek: 3.73
Kurt: 4.07
Karen: 4.15 (small sample - only 34 ratings)
48322 Maggie wrote: "Geek-Again-you have to pick just one!"

Sorry! New to this.

Previous posts were ones I've read, so how about this:
Terminal World by by Alastair Reynolds

(I've actually got A Canticle for Leibowitz, but never read it - it just looks too depressing!)
Oct 20, 2011 01:25PM

48322 Maggie wrote: "lol geek-you have to pick one!
A lot of good ones there..."

OK - Gateway by Fred Pohl
Oct 20, 2011 01:01PM

48322 I didn't realise that there was an awards page in GR here: http://www.goodreads.com/award
It's got Hugos and Nebulas all listed - excellent!
Oct 20, 2011 12:48PM

48322 Nichole wrote: "I have recently changed...or rather better defined my rating system. For me, a 5 star book is a book that I absolutely LOVE. Its a book that I know I will want to read again...."

Exactly! The trouble is that almost all of Pratchett's, Bujold's and Stross' books fall into that category. That's half of my 5 stars right there...
Oct 20, 2011 12:24PM

48322 SubterraneanCatalyst wrote: "... I'm not even going to bother to try to really input that completely on this site. Just what I find current and I can remember relatively easily..."

I've found that I have to keep adding books because they get Recommended, and shelving them as Read is the easiest way to get them replaced in the Recommended List.
Oct 20, 2011 12:16PM

48322 Here's my thoughts:

Recent authors:
Cosmonaut Keep - Ken MacLeod
Coyote - Allen Steele

Hugo Winners:
The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress - Robert A. Heinlein
Gateway - Frederik Pohl

Other Classics:
The Currents of Space - Isaac Asimov
Fourth Mansions - Raphael Aloysius Lafferty

(apart from the last one they're space opera / hard sf)
48322 Possibles (that I've read)
Last and First Men - Olaf Stapleton
Across the Sea of Suns (Galactic Center series) - Gregory Benford
The Shadow of the Torturer (The Book of the New Sun #1) - Gene Wolfe
The Dying Earth - Jack Vance (although this reads more like fantasy)
Oct 20, 2011 09:10AM

48322 Becky wrote: "I created an excel spreadsheet last week that listed all the Hugo and Nebula winners in chronological order by publication date..."

Yes, I've got a spreadsheet too, now. It'd be interesting to compare them, but I don't know how. There's plenty of information on the 'net, but not in the format I wanted. And there's always some borderline cases - like do you include withdrawn nominees?

I also wondered about merging the SF Masterworks, but as that's a commercial venture, with its own priorities, I decided against it. For instance, can they get the rights to all the award winners? And is their list skewed towards books that are out of copyright?

So I'm just going to use them as a source of the older books when I get round to buying them.
Oct 20, 2011 04:53AM

48322 I've just realised that I've given about a quarter of my books 5 stars. Now obviously I tend to read authors I really enjoy, and one of them (Pratchett) is very prolific. So it's not like I'm giving 5 stars to a quarter of all books read randomly. But it still seems it's probably too high.

What do the rest of you do? Do you have a notional percentage as a guide for 5 stars? Or, like me, do you find many books by your favourite authors "amazing"?
Robert Heinlein (46 new)
Oct 20, 2011 03:28AM

48322 My pennyworth:
First came across Heinlein as a youngster (in the 50s) with Starman Jones. I still remember much of it, including the first explanation I'd read of warp space. It made such an impression that I've now bought it (still to be re-read).

Other greats have already been mentioned: Stranger in a Strange Land, Glory Road, Farnham's Freehold.

I really liked Starship Troopers, so of course I hated the film, which took the title, but missed the point.

But Number of the Beast was an awful disappointment. It always seemed to me that he started one book, got bored and finished writing a different one. Without tying up the plot threads.

Yet two years later he published Friday which I really enjoyed. It's not a "Great Book", but the story-telling is superb - it just carries you away (well it did me anyway). A superb page-turner.
Oct 20, 2011 03:08AM

48322 Pia wrote: "It looks like you've got a lot of reading to do in your future..."

The trouble is, I'm a bit like a kid in a sweetie shop - with a bag full of sweets, but still loooking around to see if there's anything even more exciting on the shelves... I suppose that's why I've been interested in the award winners - are there any "new" authors (ie in the last 20 years!) that I haven't sampled.

One effect of being really old and crumbly, is that your perspective is different. Not only is any writer who first published after 1990 still only a beginner, but I still think of the Nebula Award is a new-fangled thing - it didn't start till I was at university!
Oct 19, 2011 03:11PM

48322 Pia wrote: "...Sffgeek, I'm curious if you've chosen to read anything from the lists yet?"

I'm really interested in this for longer term planning. I've already read 8 of the 22 Hugo+Nebula winners. Of the rest, I'm planning on buying The Domesday book, as I've never read Connie Willis. The others are for my longer-term reading list - I've currently got 22 on my to-read (ie soon) list, and 57 on my more-to-read list. Never mind the other 144 unread books I own but currently have no plans for...

I've probably read most of the winners and nominees from the 50's 60's and 70's - but I would have got them out of the library back then, and I can't remember them all(!)

EDIT: Although I've put the remaining 13 (?) joint winners on my possibles shelf (for future purchase), they're mostly dte - I've already read the ndte ones because those are what I prefer.
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