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Topic: Dystopia

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BarteringBibliophile avatar
Subject: Dystopia
Date Posted: 8/22/2007 6:45 PM ET
Member Since: 7/9/2007
Posts: 34
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I'm currently on a Dystopian novel kick and I was wondering if anyone has any suggestions.

Shaylinn avatar
Date Posted: 8/22/2007 9:23 PM ET
Member Since: 6/28/2007
Posts: 192
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Here's a previous thread of similar books.

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Date Posted: 9/5/2007 3:00 PM ET
Member Since: 9/25/2006
Posts: 316
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Classics: Brave New World / Fahrenheit 451 / 1984 /

PKD: Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? / The Man Who Japed  / The Man in the High Castle / A Scanner Darkly (great movie too) / The 3 Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch

Genre: Camp Concentration (Thomas Disch) / Planet of the Apes / Player Piano / Cat's Cradle / any Wm Gibson / on Wings of Song (Thomas Disch again: Iowa as fascist police state!)

Litterachure: We (Yevgeny Zamyatin) / The Sleeper Awakes (Wells) / The Wanting Seed (Burgess) / Invitation to a Beheading (Nabokov) / It Can't Happen Here (Lewis)


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Date Posted: 9/18/2007 2:28 PM ET
Member Since: 9/12/2007
Posts: 15
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My all time two favorites so far, well for 30 years anyway!

This Perfect Day  (Ira Levin)  Beg, borrow, mooch, steal, trade- this is a MUST read,  IMHO !

Masters of Solitude  (Parke Godwin & Marvin Kaye)  First of an incomplete trilogy, a fine stand alone book. To split hairs this one is more post -apocalyptic than dystopian...

How about Mike Resnick's "Kirinyaga" stories?


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Date Posted: 10/4/2007 4:00 PM ET
Member Since: 9/18/2007
Posts: 5
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Dhalgren by Samuel Delany, but there is some ambiguity as to whether it is a dystopia or a utopia.

Also, Never Let Me Go, although it may be more lit than SF.

Trey avatar
Bowden P. (Trey) - ,
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Date Posted: 1/9/2008 4:50 PM ET
Member Since: 9/26/2006
Posts: 32
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Lacy And His Friends by David Drake. Universal surveillance, no rights and an oppressive government.

Starfish, Maelstrom, Behemoth: B-Max and Behemoth: Sepukku by Peter Watts. Grim stuff, but a lot of good material there.

Glasshouse by Charles Stross. Really universal surveillance. Welcome to the Panopticon.

The Iron Heel by Jack London.

The Sheep Look Up, Stand on Zanzibar and The Shockwave Rider by John Brunner.

Scott Westerfeld's Pretties 'Trilogy' (Uglies, Pretties, Specials, Extras). Its YA, but with mandated plastic surgery its not a fun place.


ElizabethG avatar
Date Posted: 1/11/2008 1:50 PM ET
Member Since: 9/11/2007
Posts: 399
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The Handmaid's Tale

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Date Posted: 1/12/2008 5:49 PM ET
Member Since: 8/25/2006
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The Psalms of Herod & The Sword of Mary by Esther Friesner (these are half post-apocalyptic, half dystopian, see my description in the 'Post Apocalyptic Earth Stories' thread on this board)

Oryx & Crake by Margaret Atwood -- a scientific genius runs amok, one man (and I mean ONE) left to deal with the consequences

Animal Farm by George Orwell -- Aesopian parable of Stalinism (goes down especially nicely with Orwell's 1984, Zamyatin's We, and Mikhail Bulgakov's Master and Margarita, which retells the rise of Stalin like a fairytale as funny and whimsical as it is terrifying and intellectually stimulating)

I don't know if William Golding's Lord of the Flies counts as dystopia, but it should :) Bunch of proper English schoolboys wind up on a deserted island (possibly because of a nuclear explosion) and quickly regresses to tribalism. An awesome Lord of the Flies-esque film is Battle Royale: a bunch of proper Japanese kids are dropped on a deserted island in order to participate in a simple educational game: whoever is the last to survive, wins.

Her Smoke Rose Up Forever by James Tiptree, Jr. a.k.a. Alice Sheldon -- this is a collection of the author's best short fiction including these two classic gems: "The Screwfly Solution" and "Houston, Houston, Do You Read?" Both of these examine Earth as populated by only one sex. Other stories in the volume examine gender issues as well, often in conjunction with alien contact, violence and the end of the world.

The Infernal Desire Machines of Doctor Hoffman & The Passion of New Eve by Angela Carter -- gender dystopias by a great feminist writer. In Machines, a young man called Desiderio navigates a nightmarish landscape straight out of Alice in Wonderland with fangs bared and without the Victorian paraphernalia. In Eve, a man is surgically transformed into a woman and endures a torturous rite of passage in a post-apocalyptic America populated by mad macho poets, faded movie stars, children guerrillas and others.

Last Edited on: 1/13/08 1:25 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
katknit avatar
Date Posted: 1/15/2008 6:18 PM ET
Member Since: 6/1/2005
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The Children of Men, by PD James, who usually writes mysteries. It's set in 2026 London, and no babies have been born in 18 years because of rampant infertility. Also a DVD with Clive Owen.




Last Edited on: 1/15/08 6:23 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
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Subject: Dystopia
Date Posted: 1/16/2008 7:07 PM ET
Member Since: 1/2/2008
Posts: 43
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The Giver by Lois Lowry

The House of the Scorpion by Nancy Farmer

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Subject: New tag: Dystopia
Date Posted: 1/31/2008 9:16 AM ET
Member Since: 12/21/2006
Posts: 315
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People have been tagging dystopic books, so they're easier to find. Check it out, and tag your own favorites:


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Date Posted: 2/5/2008 4:04 PM ET
Member Since: 7/9/2007
Posts: 142
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I agree with the mentions of Atwood's A Handmaid's Tale and Oryx & Crake.  Another book I read recently that might interest you is The Sparrow by Mary Doria Russell.  It has a dystopian element to it, though there is much more to it.