Amph ~Official Suggestion Thread~ New to Sci-Fi/Fantasy? No Problem!

Discussion in 'Archive: SF&F: Books and Comics' started by Zebra3, Jan 6, 2006.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Zebra3 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 28, 2004
    star 5
    Thanks to Mastadge for letting me create this thread :)

    So are you new to the worlds of Science Fiction and Fantasy and you don't really know where to begin? No problem! Just ask in this thread to get some excellent ideas from other users here.

    Or have you read everything by an author and want to try another? Or have you read every single book in a series and want to branch out. This is still the place for you!

    Just ask away. You'll get some excellent suggestions :)
  2. Juliet316 Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Apr 27, 2005
    star 7
    Okay, I'll bite.

    Most of my Sci - Fi reading has come from the Trek line with just smatterings of other Sci - Fi over the years. I would like to try some Sci - Fi outside of Trek but I don't know who's good and who's not (and I realize that who people feel is good is completely subjective).

    So what I guess I'm asking is, what would you recommend for me to read outside of Star Trek?
  3. emilsson Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 5, 1998
    star 6
    If you appreciate Star Trek for its take on science, the future of humans and so, I recommend Isaac Asimov's Foundation-books. Asimov has a great way of making themes like the survival of human civilisation very interesting.
  4. Zebra3 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 28, 2004
    star 5
    I haven't read too much sci-fi lately. But I will suggest Dune by Frank Herbert for anyone who asks. I haven't read the others in the series but the first one is excellent. It has an amazing amount of heart, politics, war, fate and a variety of other themes. Pretty heavy, but worthwhile, book.

    I'd also suggest H.G. Wells's War of the Worlds. Most of the book is a raw and gut wrenching story about survival and what people do in infuriatingly stressful situations. The ending's a bit sappy though but overall a great story.
  5. Juliet316 Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Apr 27, 2005
    star 7
    Is it similar/different from the serials/TV shows/Movies?
  6. citizenjohn Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 4, 2001
    star 5
  7. Zebra3 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 28, 2004
    star 5
    If you want to see a good film adaptation of Dune you need to watch the Sci-Fi channel miniseries. It's on DVD right now and was very well done. Don't watch the older version of it because it's awful. They also made a sequel to that one too, Children of Dune, but I've never seen that one.

    I haven't seen any film adaptations of War of the Worlds, but I've heard that the most recent one is pretty good. But it's set in current times and not in the late 1800's like in the book.
  8. RolandofGilead Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jan 17, 2001
    star 7
    If you're just starting out with Sci-fi/Fantasy, I'd recommend the father of it all Jules Verne. His writing can be a little sophomoric at times, but his stories still hold up some 200 years later. I just finished reading 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, and Journey to the Center of the Earth and thouroughly enjoyed them.
  9. Cobranaconda Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 3, 2004
    star 7
    For Sci-Fi, Brave New World would have to be my recommendation. It's just truly brilliant, and still manages to capture my imagination every time I read it.

    Also, War of the Worlds is good (Though I actually preferred Jeff Waynes musical version :p ), and I've heard lots of good stuff about Dune, but never read it myself.
  10. JamesBatista Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jul 13, 2005
    star 1
    I apologize if this a stupid question: but can comics be recommended here as well?
  11. Zebra3 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 28, 2004
    star 5
    Of course they can! :)

    I love comics too and some of them are better written than some of the literature I've read.
  12. Ender Sai Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 18, 2001
    star 9
    For Fantasy:

    1) The Icewind Dale Trilogy by RA Salvatore - Yes, that RA Salvatore, churlishly spurned by fickle SW fans after Vector Prime! The original Drizzt books, they introduced the character that's as cool as Boba Fett was before the prequels. ;)

    2) A Song of Fire And Ice series by George RR Martin - it will make reading other fantasy difficult because the characterisation is second to none and the plot will suck you in ruthlessly.

    3) The Dragonlance Saga by Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman - the first book reads like a D&D campaign but the quality of the second - Dragons of Winter Night - is a massive step up and it's still a fantastic saga to this day.

    E_S
  13. Twinky_Stryder Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 16, 2003
    star 4
    I'm venturing back into fantasy literature after a long absense. As for Sci-Fi I've generally limited that to SW and Douglas Adams and don't feel bothered about reading any more. I just prefer the more organic and, well, old feel you get with fantasy.

    Right now I'm reading The Black Magician Trilogy by Trudi Canavan, and really really liking it, is there a thread in this forum on that trilogy? Was just wondering.

    Anyway, I want to really get stuck into some good fantasy, but didn't really know where to start, any suggestions?


  14. Raven Administrator Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Oct 5, 1998
    star 6
    In books, the leading fantasy series these days are Harry Potter and A Song of Ice and Fire; both get better as they go on. In comics, I strongly recommend Fables to everyone, even if they don't like comics. Amazing series.
  15. NYCitygurl NSWFF Manager

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Jul 20, 2002
    star 9
  16. Excellence Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 28, 2002
    star 7

    I'm fishing for unspoiler feedback on the Sucession duology: The Risen Empire, and The Killing of Worlds. Is it good reading? I'm starving for space opera, there's so little of it, and most of it worthless.
  17. MarcusP2 Games and Community Reaper

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Jul 10, 2004
    star 6
    For those looking for some light fantasy (nothing epic on the scale of ASoIaF etc) I heartily recommend the six Sparhawk books by David Eddings. The first three are better, but all are good.
  18. Excellence Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 28, 2002
    star 7

    I've heard mixed reviews over the Eddings' material. I lack a good review that's coldly objective, absent the biased sentiments of their fond childhood memories when this spurred their fantasy lust. I almost bought some, discovering the newer books were young adult. It was close, I tell you, close!

    I'm so suspicious of old books, and their limited vocab and stiff voice. Can anyone help me please, what did the couple do that's so highly regarded, that few other writers couldn't show as well?
  19. Zebra3 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 28, 2004
    star 5

    If you're more interested in light fantasy (I'm not really into anything epic or hard core so I can't suggest anything there) then I would suggest starting with a few books either in the Dragon Lance or Forgotten Realms series.

    For Dragon Lance you might want to try Dragons of Autumn Twilight, Dragons of Winter Night, and Dragons of Spring Dawning.

    For Forgotten Realms you might want to start off with Shadowdale, Tatras, Waterdeep, Prince of Lies and Crucible: The Trial of Cyric the Mad.
  20. Excellence Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 28, 2002
    star 7

    I'm actually tempted to read that Avatar trilogy, when deities were kicked out of the sky and the roster was reshuffled, but I've seen too many frown-class reviews on it. Sounds like a kicker, but was it truly breezy?
  21. Zebra3 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 28, 2004
    star 5
    Breezy? Not quite sure what you mean by that Ex. Most of the Forgotten Realms is light fatasy. Nothing particularly deep. Just fun adventure stories and that's all they're meant to be. But I have to admit that I had a lot of trouble reading Shadowdale and Tantras. For some reason I always have problems reading anything by Scott Ciencin. I could also barely get through The Night Parade. But Waterdeep was written by Troy Denning and is much better than the first two books. Prince of Lies and Crucible are both excellent.

    I really suggested the Avatar series because it, like those DragonLance books I suggested, is the major story around which pretty much everything in FR revolves. A ton of books make reference to it in some way or another.
  22. VadersLaMent Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Apr 3, 2002
    star 9
    Anything by Asimov.

    Most anything by Arthur C. Clarke.

    Ray Bradbury's The Illustrated Man

    I recommend ben Bova's Asteroid Wars trilogy for good hard scfi, but I didn;t like the way it ended.

    Robert Howard's original Conan.

    When Gravity Fails, A Fire In The Sun, and The Exile Kiss by George Alec Effinger, good cyberpunk.

    Larry Niven: Most of the Man-Kzin War stories are good, 3 out of 4 Rongworld books are good, and IMO Protector is his best book.

    Lord Soth is the Darth Vader of Dragonlance. Knight of the Black Rose and Spectre of the Black Rose are two good books starring the character with the second being superior.

    If you can find them in used book stores there is a D&D series called Endless Quest books which are fantasy for young readers that are set up like the Choose Your Own Adventure series. Most of the Endless Quest books are fun to read through but there are a few stinkers in there.

    Recently I've read Allen Steele's Coyote trilogy and my nitpicks on it are minimal, it's a very good read.

  23. Excellence Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 28, 2002
    star 7

    But why must Forgotten Realms be written light with brevity? Why not focus on two main ongoing series, where events and books are loosely connected to one another, but with deeper writing. I actually wouldn't mind reading a FR book, despite the despicable cliche elf and dwarf and dragon I'm sure to headbutt into. But why not make the books deeper? Costs more, in time and new sale qantities?
  24. Zebra3 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 28, 2004
    star 5
    Surprisingly :rolleyes: Ex, not everyone likes to read material wherein you find deep philosophical discussion every which way. Not everyone likes epic fantasy. Forgotten Realms (and other shared fantasy worlds like it) fills a niche in the market of readers who WANT light fantasy reading. I know I certainly wouldn't want to find Forgotten Realms turned into anything like, let's say, Robert Jordan or George Martin.
  25. jangoisadrunk Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 7, 2005
    star 4
    I've read several Ben Bova novels. The Mars duology is my favorite; however, I've never even heard of the Asteroid Wars trilogy. I'll keep an eye out for it.

    I'm also interested in Allen Steele's Coyote trilogy. I almost bought book two (the only one they had) a few weeks ago, but got Alastair Reynolds' Revelation Space instead. Anyone who hasn't read that needs to check it out asap. It totally transended the average sci-fi novel experience for me.
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.