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Topic: Please help me find some new books to read

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Subject: Please help me find some new books to read
Date Posted: 1/12/2009 5:17 PM ET
Member Since: 7/12/2008
Posts: 9
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(First of all I'm sorry this has all run together, it sounds stupid but I can't figure out how to make a new line in this post-box hence the edits.) Hello, I am hoping some of you might be able to recommend some books to me. They can be either fantasy or sci-fi. I don't know what to read lately, I just re-read what I've already got. First, I am *really* interested in books that involve parallel worlds. Examples are: The Amber Chronicles, The Books of Myst, the Dark Tower, The Death Gate Chronicles, and Michael Moorcock's Eternal Champion books (Elric, etc). I am also interested in books that have interesting or unique settings--that are not just about elves, dwarves, dragons, vampires, and such. Examples of interesting settings could be Hyperion, The Mageworld Series, Wraeththu, Nighwatch, and Gene Wolf's Books of the New Sun. I'm not interested in: books where the characters are children/teens or children are largely involved in the story (exception: His Dark Materials) or books where romance is a major plot point (exception: Tinker). I have read and did not really care for A Game of Thrones, The Mirror of Her Dreams, The Dresden Files, and the Tales from the Nightside books. I do not like Mercedes Lackey, Terry Brooks, Terry Goodkind, David Eddings, or Laurell K Hamilton. My favorite authors are Michael Moorcock, Debra Doyle & James D. MacDonald, Dan Simmons, Gene Wolf, and Storm Constantine. I hope very much that someone is able to give me some suggestions!

Last Edited on: 1/12/09 5:20 PM ET - Total times edited: 2
Date Posted: 1/12/2009 6:57 PM ET
Member Since: 1/2/2008
Posts: 174
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I put your favorite authors into Literature-Map, and it suggested you might like Jack Vance, Vernor Vinge, Peter Hamilton, John Crowley, Lucius Shepard, Michael Swanwick, and Caitlin R. Kiernan.

Hope you find something!

Date Posted: 1/13/2009 4:45 AM ET
Member Since: 12/19/2005
Posts: 5,091
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Robin Hobb's Assassin series is very good.  Assassin's Apprentice, Royal Assassin and Assassin's Quest. The main character starts out as a child, but you shouldn't let that dissuade you from reading the book.  It's not a "coming of age" story or anything of that sort.  No elves, dragons or vampires here.

I enjoyed Michelle West's Sun Sword series, though it's not for everyone.  The first book is The Broken Crown.

Lois McMaster Bujold has a fantasy series: The Curse of Chalion, Paladin of Souls, and The Hallowed Hunt.  She also has a fantastic science fiction series, the Vorkosigan series.  The first book in that series is Cordelia's Honor, but I'd highly recommend any of the series.  You don't need to read them in order, each book can be read and enjoyed by itself.

Date Posted: 1/13/2009 10:51 AM ET
Member Since: 4/6/2006
Posts: 236
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Roger Zelazny's Amber series might suit you - it's 2 separate sets of 5 books.

Margaret

Date Posted: 1/13/2009 8:54 PM ET
Member Since: 7/12/2008
Posts: 9
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Thank you all for the suggestions, I appreciate them. I have already read one of the Assassin books and all the Vorkosigan and Amber series, but I will look into the other authors and books you all have recommended.

Date Posted: 1/15/2009 1:33 AM ET
Member Since: 10/7/2008
Posts: 857
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Since you said you like Dan Simmons, have you tried his duology  Ilium and Olympos?  It takes place on Mars and uses greek mythology and robots of all things.  Most interesting.

For parallel universes, try S. M. Stirling.  His stories are called alternate histories but I have learned to enjoy them thanks to my hubby.  He has two series that are connected by an event that sends the island of Nantucket back in time and in the current time renders all technology inert.  He does a great job with interesting characaters and detailed descriptions.  The first trilogy is called Island in the Sea of Time and the other one starts with Dies the Fire.

Date Posted: 1/15/2009 10:11 AM ET
Member Since: 11/17/2006
Posts: 182
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I recently finished Brandon Sanderson's Mistborn trilogy and thoroughly enjoyed it.  From what you said, it sounds like a good fit for you.  It's not your typical fantasy with elves, dwarves, wizards, etc, and it has a very creative, original, and well thought out world and "magic" system.   I highly recommend it.

Date Posted: 1/15/2009 11:58 AM ET
Member Since: 12/29/2008
Posts: 6,377
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I was just talking about this on another thread, but you should try Guy Gavriel Kay.  His Fionavar trilogy (The Summer Tree, The Wandering Fire, and The Darkest Road) are some of my favorite fantasy books of all time, and happily for you do involve parallel worlds.  I have read everything he has written in the fantasy genre, and think he's a really good writer, and I love his stand-alone books, too - but if you want to try him, I'd start with The Summer Tree to see how you do (it's not as long as some of his others, and does seem to fit into what you are looking for).  Good luck!

Date Posted: 1/16/2009 3:58 AM ET
Member Since: 12/19/2005
Posts: 5,091
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Seconding the Guy Gavriel Kay recommendation.  Very good stuff.

Date Posted: 1/16/2009 4:44 PM ET
Member Since: 12/29/2008
Posts: 272
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Some more books you could try are the Leven Thumps series by Obert Skye.  I've only read the first one so far, but I really enjoyed it and I think you might also...

Date Posted: 1/16/2009 9:35 PM ET
Member Since: 7/12/2008
Posts: 9
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Thanks again for all the additional suggestions, I will make a list and go see what I can find :)

Date Posted: 1/18/2009 2:38 PM ET
Member Since: 10/2/2007
Posts: 66
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Orson Scott Card....The Alvin Maker series. It does start out with children but is the story of tthe life of Alvin maker,set in a world similar to ours.Great series!

Date Posted: 1/19/2009 7:14 PM ET
Member Since: 2/24/2007
Posts: 6,447
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Piers Anthony has a series that is set in an alternate world. (The Adept series) Also the Xanth and Virtual Mode series.

John Varley's Titan, Wizard and Demon are sci fi. I really enjoyed them.

Tad Williams Otherland Series. Personally, I couldn't get into it but it sounds like it may be right up your alley so to speak.

Doesn't Harry Turtledove write alternate history/sci fi?

Another great series is by Harry Harrison. West of Eden is the first book. It's older but a great alternate history/sci fi.

Date Posted: 1/22/2009 10:15 AM ET
Member Since: 2/25/2007
Posts: 13,991
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Orson Scott Card's Alvin Maker series is truly fantastic....those are the only books by him I really liked, but I liked it a LOT!

Date Posted: 1/26/2009 7:34 PM ET
Member Since: 8/13/2006
Posts: 83
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Even though it deals with kids I would suggest the Ender series by Orson Scott Card.

Date Posted: 1/29/2009 1:17 PM ET
Member Since: 10/6/2005
Posts: 10,696
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Sounds like you would enjoy Stealing the Elf-King's Roses by Diane Duane. There is a copy available here at PBS:

http://www.paperbackswap.com/book/details/9780446609838-Stealing+the+ElfKings+Roses

Date Posted: 1/31/2009 1:37 PM ET
Member Since: 7/12/2008
Posts: 9
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Thanks for the new ideas, everybody. I have read the Orson Scott Card and John Varley books already but I will look into the others. The Diane Duane book sounds like something my mother might like because she is also into the Dresden Files books, so I will have to get hold of a copy for her this Mother's Day!