Sunday, August 12, 2012

Laundry Days and Scribblin'

I'm sitting in the WashWorld, got two big loads in the washer and Wayne and Herb are here so the old guys currently rule the place.  Talking to old guys is about politics and the world usually is much more relaxing than talking to the youngers.  Old guys know that there is a lot of slippage between the way that they feel that the world should be and the way that the world actually runs.  The really rational even realize that they might not have all the answers and just watch the mime show.

So, Mistah Charlie asked me about Science Fiction in a comment on an earlier post about my suggestions for science fiction.  So, this here post will run down a couple of reads that I tend to re-read and I feel have real value.  Realize here that my tastes aren't quite normal and some of these are probably "speculative fiction" rather than pure science fiction.  I will try to load disclaimers into the text here.

  1. (SpecFic) The Baroque Cycle by Neal Stephenson;  In my mind this is a huge, rambling, epic about the beginning of the Scientific age.  Three big books with the main characters being Isaac Newton's college roommate, the king of the Vagabonds, and a rescued odalesque from the Topkapi palace.  
  2. (SciFic) Pandora's Star and Judas Unchained;  by Peter Hamilton.  Has to be one of my favorite space operas.  Fast paced with references to the big issues of classic science fiction, longevity, spaceflight, and hyperspace.
  3. (FantasyFic) The Recluse stories by Modesitt.  One of the huge, multi-volume epics of an alternate universe where magic exists in the form of order and chaos and an extremely subtle cautionary tale about the use and abuse of natural resources.


russell1200 said...

My head swims with suggestions without narrower parameters.

Various genre attract the top writers at different times. Frighteningly enough, I think Romance novels are probably getting more than there fair share of the best writers at the moment.

Science fiction was a world beating genre in the 1980s. What you look for is where the young writers are gravitating toward. The older retirees, who can bankroll their writing with their retirement with their pension will go one way, but it is the starving artist crowd that pushes the envelope.

If it was not brought up in the earlier discussion, it is hard to not mention Gibson's Neromancer.

Joel said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
mistah charley, ph.d. said...

Thanks for the suggestions. Science fiction novels I read during the 20th century, and have re-read with pleasure since then, include Software by Rudy Rucker and Citizen of the Galaxy by Robert Heinlein. One I am tempted to seek out to re-read, as I become more pessimistic about the medium-term future, is Miller's Canticle for Leibowitz.