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Books > Sci-fi Set in the Future-Now?

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message 1: by Jack (new)

Jack (fitzkreiner) | 2 comments Does anyone know of any science fiction set in 2012? (Or, more broadly, the last five years/next five years?)

I've just picked up Arthur C. Clarke's The Ghost from the Grand Banks, which is set in 2012, and thought it might be interesting to theme some of my reading in that direction. The contrast between idea and reality when it comes to expectations of the future is always fun, especially seen through the writing of different authors.

...or maybe that's just me. Do you prefer sci-fi that hasn't reached it's sell-by date yet?

The Wikipedia "Works of fiction set in 2012" page and its later fellows weren't much help (excepting that Future History by Heinlein is set in 2012) so whatever you can recommend would be much appreciated!


message 2: by Jp36 (new)

Jp36 | 13 comments I found this old post with what might turn out to be some leads for you:

http://ask.metafilter.com/167383/Help...-


I get a kick out of older sci-fi where they dreamed maybe a little too 'big'. I think more modern writers 'learned' and would put their predictions farther out than their predecessors to 'future' proof' their work. Save those writers keeping things 'contemporary' for some event/tech that changes everything.

'Expired' sci-fi is as close as we can get to traveling back in time ourselves and looking to the future.


message 3: by Glyn (new)

Glyn | 1 comments -"The Forever War" by Joe Haldeman (the conflict begins in 1996, but the events stretch way into the future)

-"Player One" by Douglas Coupland (not sure if it's SF, exactly, but it is apocalyptic and takes place in 2010)

-If you haven't read it yet, the early stories in "I, Robot" by Asimov take place in 1996, 2015, etc.

That's all I can think off from the top of my head! Hopefully I'll be able to think of more later. Also, I find it really interesting/amusing when old books are set in the "future", our present. Like you said, it's fun to see the expectations!


message 4: by Jaime (new)

Jaime | 61 comments Well - Wm Gibson rather cannily left out any hard chronological markers in his Sprawl stories but, as he has frequently pointed out in interviews, there was still a Soviet Union - the collapse of which has left the trilogy as a kind of Alternate History. I'm pretty sure the Bridge novels have dates which in 2012 have rendered them 'stale' for want of a better word.
SF has usually been about the time it's being written (I know I'm far from the first to point that out) except for hyper-galactic work from the likes of Baxter, Benford, Reynolds, Clarke back in the day, etc. I see SF as more of a thematic and story-telling toolkit than any kind of vehicle for serious predictions. Besides, some of those pulp-era tales with a tropical Venus, an inhabitable Mars and multiple alien races within our Solar System are still fun to read...


message 5: by Peter (new)

Peter (wire-154) | 23 comments John Brunner's Stand on Zanzibar is set in 2010. Published in 1968, the focus is more on the possible political, social, and economic situations that could be caused by overpopulation, rather than on speculation about advances in the 'hard' sciences.
(Not that there's no hard science in the book, there is, I just don't think it's 'hard sf'.)

Probably because of this focus on societal change rather than technological change, 30 plus years old and it's still not dated.


message 6: by Phillip (new)

Phillip Goodman the cory doctorow novel 'makers' which i'm currently reading is set in the next few years, not referred to a specific year but just called 'the teens' so 2013 plus, i think the 'predictions' in it will likely prove to be true, first published in 2009.


message 7: by Phillip (new)

Phillip Goodman ofcourse theres Arthur C. Clarke's second space odyssey book 2010 i think its called


message 8: by Jack (new)

Jack (fitzkreiner) | 2 comments Thanks to everyone so far for suggestions!

Jaime wrote: SF has usually been about the time it's being written (I know I'm far from the first to point that out) except for hyper-galactic work from the likes of Baxter, Benford, Reynolds, Clarke back in the day, etc. I see SF as more of a thematic and story-telling toolkit than any kind of vehicle for serious predictions. Besides, some of those pulp-era tales with a tropical Venus, an inhabitable Mars and multiple alien races within our Solar System are still fun to read...
"


Oh, sure! I think that that (SF being about the time it's written no matter when it's actually set) is what draws me to a lot of the older SF. Like JP36 said above, it's a way to journey into the issues and expectations of the past. I love some of those old pulp stories for the window they give into the past more than for anything they may have to predict about the future.


message 9: by Phillip (new)

Phillip Goodman cory doctorow always insists that he doesn't write about the future, philip k dick clearly wrote about the present for the most part, or the potential future of not too many years time


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