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message 1: by Heather (last edited Aug 29, 2013 11:39AM) (new)

Heather | 8 comments Mod
If someone came to you and was not familiar with the genre where would you have them start? What are some of your favorite sci-fi/fantasy books?

message 2: by Anna (new)

Anna | 1 comments I am much more familiar with fantasy than scifi, but I would point them towards the classics first. I honestly believe that all persons should begin with Tolkien. The whole world opens up from there.

message 3: by Heather (new)

Heather | 8 comments Mod
Just a casual observation but there seems to be more female writers of fantasy than sci-fi...any idea what's up with that??? And again, just a casual beginner's observation, I've in no way attempted to research the veracity of that claim!

message 4: by Forrest (new)

Forrest | 2 comments It's true, sci-fi is traditionally a boy's club and fantasy is all girly girl daydreams (wah wah wah). It's part of the whole 'science is for boys, imagination is for girls' dichotomy we've inherited. Oh and it's all white people. And it really blows. Ursula K. Leguin is prolly the strongest female sci-fi writer, Octavia Butler is huge too (and is a black woman for that matter).

message 5: by Forrest (new)

Forrest | 2 comments Anyways, the old fogeys used to say, 'learn your ABCs- Asimov, Bradbury, and Clark.' But it really depends on what hypothetical reader person is looking for:

Hard Science Fiction: Asimov, Clark, but Joe Haldeman is contemporary and way less dry- recommend The Accidental Time Machine, The Forever War

Cool Sci-Fi: Bradbury is so so wonderful- read anything but Farenheit 451;
Philip K. Dick for the mind fucks- A Scanner Darkly, Flow My Tears the Policeman Said;
Harlan Ellison is dark and bitter but hugely insightful and imaginative, also he's a closet Clevelander- Deathbird Stories;
Alfred Bester is super-inventive and he's got a really fast and raw pulp style- Stars My Destination;
Roger Zelazney is a great everyman's writer- Lord of Light for a super-cool Hindu/Buddhist space opera.
Um . . . I'll stop now.

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