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Topic: Favorite "literary" sci-fi/fantasy?

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Subject: Favorite "literary" sci-fi/fantasy?
Date Posted: 8/14/2009 10:37 AM ET
Member Since: 4/13/2009
Posts: 285
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I just discovered Jasper Fforde's "Thursday Next" series (first book The Eyre Affair) from a thread on the Hidden Gems board and would recommend it to anyone who likes Terry Pratchett's style of writing.   It's an alternative Earth-type stories with time travel and literary police and. . .well,  you just have to read them. 

Since it is shelved with the "regular" books and not the sci-fi/fantasy books, I probably would have never tried it if it hadn't been for the PBS recommendation.  Which made me wonder if there is other "literary" sci-fi /fantasy out there that I'm missing.  Does anyone have a favorite?

Date Posted: 8/14/2009 12:25 PM ET
Member Since: 4/18/2009
Posts: 1,376
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Well there's always Kurt Vonnegut. . . brilliant, funny writer with a core of cynical humanism that is surprisingly hard to find. My personal favorite is Cat's Cradle because it was my first Vonnegut; of course many people read Slaughterhouse Five in school; but my favorite slightly less common Vonneguts are Breakfast of Champions and Sirens of Titan.

Date Posted: 8/14/2009 10:43 PM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
Posts: 15,485
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Nina Kiriki Hoffman. 

Paul H. (PaulH) - ,
Date Posted: 8/15/2009 12:13 AM ET
Member Since: 6/27/2008
Posts: 146
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If you don't mind 19th century literature...

Robert Louis Stevenson The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde

Mary Shelley Frankenstein

Bram Stoker Dracula

Mark Twain A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court

Anything by Jules Verne

 ETA: Hey look... I hit 100 posts! :) 

Last Edited on: 8/15/09 12:16 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 9/5/2009 2:44 PM ET
Member Since: 1/16/2009
Posts: 112
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Thanks for bringing Jasper Fforde to my attention.  Just finished "The Eyre Affair" and loved it.  Fortunately had read "Jane Eyre" and remembered enought to appreciate the book, although I am sure some of the literary references flew right over my head.  Have the nexct Tuesday Next on my wish list as the local library doesn't have it.  

Recently read Heinlein's "Glory Road" and noticed several references that the book that I has apparenbtly skipped the first time I read the book.  Decided to slow down and lis thtem, and then look them up.  Finished with two pages of things to look up.  Am I the only one, or do a lot of people just skip over such things?  



Date Posted: 9/5/2009 3:02 PM ET
Member Since: 4/18/2009
Posts: 1,376
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Am I the only one, or do a lot of people just skip over such things?


For me, it depends on my mood, how often those things come up, and how important they seem to be to the story. So, for instance, reading Elizabeth Bear's Blood and Iron I didn't bother, because the references were coming far too frequently and I didn't want to read the novel sitting at my computer. Plus, I've read her before and trusted that the story would make sense even without the references, though I knew it would have been enhanced if I knew them. On the other hand, in Jacqueline Carey's Kushiel series I do look up the references, because there aren't that many that I'm not familiar with already or that I can't figure out from the text. But I will admit, since I read mainly for escapism, if an author throws too many references at me that are over my head and which are necessary to the plot, I tend not to read that person again, because it just isn't worth it to me.

Date Posted: 9/5/2009 9:36 PM ET
Member Since: 10/13/2008
Posts: 5
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Along the same lines, has anyone read "Pride and Prejudice and Zombies" yet?  Any good?