kit (mizkit) wrote,

SFBC significant SF novel meme

Below is a Science Fiction Book Club list most significant SF novels between 1953-2006.

The meme part of this works like so: Bold the ones you have read, strike through the ones you read and hated, italicize those you started but never finished and put a star next to the ones you love.

1. The Lord of the Rings, J.R.R. Tolkien
2. The Foundation Trilogy, Isaac Asimov
3. Dune, Frank Herbert
4. Stranger in a Strange Land, Robert A. Heinlein *
5. A Wizard of Earthsea, Ursula K. Le Guin
6. Neuromancer, William Gibson
7. Childhood's End, Arthur C. Clarke
8. Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?, Philip K. Dick
9. The Mists of Avalon, Marion Zimmer Bradley
10. Fahrenheit 451, Ray Bradbury
11. The Book of the New Sun, Gene Wolfe
12. A Canticle for Leibowitz, Walter M. Miller, Jr.
13. The Caves of Steel, Isaac Asimov
14. Children of the Atom, Wilmar Shiras
15. Cities in Flight, James Blish
16. The Colour of Magic, Terry Pratchett
17. Dangerous Visions, edited by Harlan Ellison
18. Deathbird Stories, Harlan Ellison
19. The Demolished Man, Alfred Bester
20. Dhalgren, Samuel R. Delany
21. Dragonflight, Anne McCaffrey * (hi, i'm a girl)
22. Ender's Game, Orson Scott Card
23. The First Chronicles of Thomas Covenant the Unbeliever, Stephen R. Donaldson
24. The Forever War, Joe Haldeman
25. Gateway, Frederik Pohl
26. Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, J.K. Rowling
27. The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, Douglas Adams *
28. I Am Legend, Richard Matheson
29. Interview with the Vampire, Anne Rice
30. The Left Hand of Darkness, Ursula K. Le Guin
31. Little, Big, John Crowley
32. Lord of Light, Roger Zelazny
33. The Man in the High Castle, Philip K. Dick
34. Mission of Gravity, Hal Clement
35. More Than Human, Theodore Sturgeon
36. The Rediscovery of Man, Cordwainer Smith
37. On the Beach, Nevil Shute
38. Rendezvous with Rama, Arthur C. Clarke *
39. Ringworld, Larry Niven
40. Rogue Moon, Algis Budrys
41. The Silmarillion, J.R.R. Tolkien
42. Slaughterhouse-5, Kurt Vonnegut
43. Snow Crash, Neal Stephenson
44. Stand on Zanzibar, John Brunner
45. The Stars My Destination, Alfred Bester
46. Starship Troopers, Robert A. Heinlein *
47. Stormbringer, Michael Moorcock
48. The Sword of Shannara, Terry Brooks *
49. Timescape, Gregory Benford
50. To Your Scattered Bodies Go, Philip Jose Farmer

There are a couple on this I'm not sure about; I may have read A WIZARD OF EARTHSEA when I was about twelve, but I can't actually remember, so I've left it unmarked. Same with DO ANDROIDS DREAM..., and THE STARS MY DESTINATION. On the other hand, I've marked TO YOUR SCATTERED BODIES GO, because I've read a lot of PJF even if I can't remember if I've read that one *specifically*. It's very possible I read THE COLOUR OF MAGIC, because in the late 80s I read a bunch of the early Discworld books and didn't like any of them, and the only one I can verifiably say I read was MOVING PICTURES, which apparently left the worst taste in my mouth, and therefore the only definable memory.

Some of them are just embarrassments for not having read; FAHRENHEIT 451 and SLAUGHTERHOUSE-5, for God's sake; how can I have not read those? Some--like THE MISTS OF AVALON--I'd read enough by the writer by the time I found that book to know there was no point in trying; I wasn't going to finish it, because I was desperately unlikely to like it. I couldn't get through THE LORD OF THE RINGS; there's not a lot of chance I'll ever read THE SILMARILLION (even if I like to say that word).

Every time I see one of these lists I think, man, I really should make some effort to read everything on this. I haven't yet done so, and possibly I should just let nwhyte do it instead (since he does that sort of thing), but I suppose that wouldn't expand *my* mind much. :)

You know what would be more interesting to me, she said, typing as she thought. What would be interesting to me would be to see the top 50 SF books as selected by the readers and writers I know (and the top 50 fantasy, for that matter), to see what I've missed from their points of view. I wonder if LibraryThing has a widget that allows for that to be discerned.
Tags: memes, reading
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