Edited to add: I saw an addendum to Rosemerry’s post over on her blog and learned that this list is part of a published book. I don’t recall reading that on Rosemerry’s blog at the time, but that could just as easily have been my goldfish memory at play as much as it could be that Rosemerry herself didn’t know.
At any rate, the authors of the book 100 Must-Read Science Fiction Novels, Stephen E. Andrews and Nick Rennison, requested that Rosemerry remove the list from her blog. They haven’t contacted me, but I think it’s only fair that I follow suit. As Rosemerry stated, if these two authors have websites, I’d also love to link to them.
I had read that lists were not copyrightable and it was on this basis that I made the post, but since I am no expert on this aspect of copyright law, I will defer to politeness in respecting the author’s wishes. I’ve left up only those I’ve read or watched and my commentary on them. Hopefully, that satisfies copyright issues and the author’s concerns.
Rosemerry also posted the back cover blurb on her site, and I thought I would add that as well since it looks particularly interesting. Here goes:
Want to become a science fiction buff or expand your reading in your favourite genre? 100 Must-Read Science Fiction Novels is a good place to start! From the publishers of the popular Good Reading Guide comes a guide to some of the finest science fiction novels ever published. With 100 of the best titles fully reviewed and a further 500 recommended, you’ll quickly become an expert on the world of science fiction.
Yeah, I’m already convinced that, for a science fiction fan, this would be an interesting read. Plus it would give me great ideas for other well-written novels to read that I haven’t already read. Which, in turn, would also introduce me to authors I haven’t yet discovered which I could very well highly enjoy.
Plus there’s the geek factor. Seriously. Being informed on the arguably top one hundred science fiction novels of all times? That rates a person serious geekery! Being knowledgeable about the next 500? Oh, you seriously need a pocket protector and punch cards from the 1970s.
I saw a post about this over at Puttin’ Words on Paper and thought, hey, great idea! And since lists and ideas aren’t copyrightable, I thought I’d copy Rosemerry in putting the list up here. And the titles you see below that are bolded and green, I’ve read the book. Where it’s green and not bolded, I’ve seen the movie (Oh, the horror!) And I’ve added commentary, too. Of course.
ETA: List amended to include only those I’ve actually read.
- I, Robot (1950) Isaac Asimov. Read the book years and years and years ago and also saw the Will Smith movie of the same name.
- Foundation (1953) Isaac Asimov. Read the book years and years and years ago.
- Timescape (1980) Gregory Benford. Hey, I read that only a couple of years ago, along with The Demolished Man.
- The Demolished Man (1952) Alfred Bester
- Fahrenheit 451 (1953) Ray Bradbury. Another one that’s so long ago that I don’t really remember much. I think it’s time I read it again.
- A Clockwork Orange (1962) Anthony Burgess. Saw the first, oh, five minutes of the movie when I was 16 in an English class. I promptly walked out – the subject matter was, in my opinion, inappropriate for someone of my age and sensibilities.
- Ender’s Game (1985) Orson Scott Card. One of my favourite books by one of my favourite authors.
- Childhood’s End (1953) Arthur C. Clarke
- Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? (1968) Philip K. Dick
- Neuromancer (1984) William Gibson
- Starship Troopers (1959) Robert A. Heinlein. Yeah, I’ll probably get tomatoes thrown at me, but I enjoyed both the book and the movie. Sad, I know…
- Dune (1965) Frank Herbert. Another one that’s been so long – for both the book and the movie – that I think I need to watch/read again and soon.
- Brave New World (1932) Aldous Huxley. Probably read during high school, along with The Chrysalids and other such stuff.
- Flowers for Algernon (1966) Daniel Keyes. Yeah, I think I read this before puberty hit. And then saw the movie that was based on the book – Charlie, I think. And then the Bollywood version that’s partially based on the book called Koi… Mil Gaya with Hrithik Roshan.
- Solaris (1961) Stanislaw Lem. Saw the very badly done movie with George Clooney.
- I Am Legend (1954) Richard Matheson. Saw the Will Smith movie. Disappointing ending. Very disappointing ending.
- Ringworld (1970) Larry Niven. Excellent book. Interesting premise. Worth revisiting.
- Nineteen Eighty-Four (1949) George Orwell. Are there still people around who haven’t read it?
- Red Mars (1993) Kim Stanley Robinson. Admittedly, this is one of his books that got me hooked on the rest of his books.
- The Man in the Maze (1969) Robert Silverberg. I’m a huge Robert Silverberg fan. His stuff is just plain fun.
- Journey to the Center of the Earth (1864) Jules Verne. Read the book, saw at least one rendition of it as a movie.
- The Time Machine (1895) H.G. Wells. Read the book, of course, and watched two versions of it as a movie. The recent one with, uh, what’s his face, and an older one. I’m pretty sure. Not absolutely positive, but fairly so.
- The Island of Dr. Moreau (1896) H.G. Wells. Ah, the more recent version of the movie with that old guy, what’s-his-face, was vaguely disturbing, probably because I believed the character he created. Which really only serves to show how good of an actor he is. Nevertheless…
- The War of the Worlds (1898) H.G. Wells
I’m surprised that there are so many I haven’t not just read, but heard of. Methinks I’m going to have to get my hands on more classic science fiction.
So I’ve read a sum total of 21 (if I can count, and that’s open for debate) and seen the movies for an additional three.
- Humorous Science Fiction
- Top 100 Must-Read Fantasy Novels
- Search Phrases That Lead People to My Site
- Speculative Fiction database
- Banned Book Week
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