What SF book are you currently reading? (2015-16)

Discussion in 'Science Fiction' started by TomTB, Apr 24, 2015.

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  1. Boreas

    Boreas n log(log n) Staff Member

    That reminds me, I need to ask btkong to add an Iain M. Banks section in the 'Featured Authors' sub-forum as well. When I'm also done with my reread of "Consider Phlebas", I'd be happy to compare opinions.
     
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  2. kenubrion

    kenubrion Well-Known Member

    My feelings as well, Ben. Abyss is a great book, and having Nigel back in the starring role is just right. What a complex, brilliant plot. Can't wait for the next.

    Now that I've found this new forum, I want to repeat the recommendation I made in the old one because it's so good. The Lazarus War: Artefact is really stunning and as a debut hard to believe it's so good. Highest recommendation I can give. But I'm easily impressed.

    http://www.amazon.com/Lazarus-War-A...6825&sr=8-1&keywords=the+lazarus+war+artefact
     
  3. TomTB

    TomTB Administrator Staff Member

    Going through a reading lull at the moment. Reading a couple of books (both fantasy) that whilst are 'ok', they aren't giving me huge impetus to pick them up and crack on with them. I'm in desperate need of a new series I can sink into and get fully immersed in, and I think I know what I'm going to opt for, thanks to Boreas' insistent praise of it :)
     
  4. Boreas

    Boreas n log(log n) Staff Member

    That's always the danger of mentioning a particular series too often. Maybe I should have just left it at that little spiel I wrote and stopped. But if I'd just done that, I wasn't sure if I'd have gotten any of you to consider reading Banks soon enough. The books will be quite different from most of the milieu you've sampled in SF, I feel. I mentioned at length about all those aspects of the novels that really make you think, but I didn't concentrate enough on all the action that many of the books contain, which can be substantial (excepting a few novels - about three of them - that are not really action oriented). At least @kenubrion and wakarimasen are around to back me up on those books. And I'm pretty sure @ofer enjoyed the first two he's read, enough to get a third one, and @Sir Arthur's enjoying his first one, too. Phew!

    But @TomTB, another quick, easy and fun option you have is the Succession duology by Scott Westerfeld comprising of "The Killing of Worlds" and "The Risen Empire". Those are very fast reads, real page turners, exciting and action-packed from beginning to end. Maybe you might want to give that a go first for something less serious/more fun if you're in a lull?

    Nonetheless, I'll have you all genuflecting at the alter of Banks soon enough. Muahaha.
     
    Last edited: May 20, 2015
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  5. ofer

    ofer Regular Member

    I really liked Consider Phlebas - it was exactly the sort of book which I enjoy to read. A little bit dark, some action, good writing and characters you can connect with.
    I liked The Player of Games but not as much as Consider Phlebas - it was a good entertaining story and I liked reading the games scenes in it but I didn't think the characters in it were as good as in CP.

    On-topic, I got Matter by Iain Banks and Leviathan Wakes by James Corey on my kindle. Currently reading fantasy but will probably get to them in the next few weeks.
     
  6. Haven

    Haven Full Member

    I'm currently still working my way(thanks to the recommendations of @Boreas) Consider Phlebas.

    Being somewhat of a casual sf reader, this is probably my first (serious) foray into the uncharted realms of real Science Fiction.

    So far the book has been pretty good, but it is somewhat of a struggle for me compared to fantasy, which I just devour.

    Still, I'm determined to get through this, and I shall.
     
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  7. Haven

    Haven Full Member

    I remember the movie version of this blew my mind way back then. Interstellar is probably the current gen closest relative.
     
  8. Boreas

    Boreas n log(log n) Staff Member

    No way, @Haven, you've read plenty of 'real' science fiction if you've read novels like "Forever War" and others that I now can't recall you mentioning. In fact, most hard-line purists would argue that works like Banks' Culture novels aren't 'real' science fiction at all - no realistic science - and would probably consider it fantasy, but most hard-liners are silly little cunts regardless of where they spring from. I admit that "Consider Phlebas" has some problems (some consider it their favourite - wakarimasen, I believe) and is stylistically and tone-wise different from the rest (it probably reaches a level of pathos the other novels can't match, though "Use of Weapons" comes close but is also infused with more humour than CP). I'd say the first three novels (the first trilogy of sorts) are actually all very different from each other - the way they're written, structured and toned.

    Also, getting past Asher's "Gridlinked" is no easy feat for the casual sf reader.
    Still haven't seen "Interstellar".
     
    Last edited: May 11, 2015
  9. kenubrion

    kenubrion Well-Known Member

    Boreas, you're not overselling Banks' Culture novels. That's not possible, they're the upper crust of sci-fi. People need to read them, and it seems once they start they read them all. So that's a good sign.
     
  10. btkong

    btkong Administrator Staff Member

    Angles of Attack, Book 3 of the Frontlines series by Mark Kloos.

    If you like military science fiction that takes a stark view of humanity (the future is dark with humanity living in ghettos, the human race facing extinction from an alien threat, self serving politics going on) with lots of gritty front line on the ground action, the Frontlines series by Kloos is some of the best stuff out there. Absolutely read if you like say Old Man's War by Sclazi (Koos's work is more gritty and depressing though I think).
     
  11. TomTB

    TomTB Administrator Staff Member

    I do, so it goes on the list! I don't tend to get on with some of your glowing recommendations though Ben, Red Rising and Altered Carbon were bit let-downs for me (I know I'm in the minority with my views on those though!)
     
  12. btkong

    btkong Administrator Staff Member

    Haha, well I can honestly say, if you like Old Man's War, you will probably almost certainly like the Fontlines series! But if I'm down 3 to 0, this one might bring me back into the green :)
     
  13. kenubrion

    kenubrion Well-Known Member

    I'm reading The Lost Starship by Vaughn Heppner on a whim. It's OK so far. I'm trying out all the very prolific new young sci-fi authors who crank out several books a year.
     
  14. Dom Brown

    Dom Brown New Member

    I really liked Altered Carbon.

    Not enough Sci Fi is really gritty or adult like this book.
     
  15. TomTB

    TomTB Administrator Staff Member

    It was all just a bit too serious for my tastes .. I like a bit of humour thrown in for good measure in any books I read, and this was one thing that was lacking in abundance! Characters need to appeal to me, and none of them did, even Kovacs! Ho hum .. I know I'm in the minority in not liking this one .. each to their own I guess ..
     
  16. kenubrion

    kenubrion Well-Known Member

    I'm going back and forth between Alien Hunters and Omega Force.
     
  17. Sir Arthur

    Sir Arthur Full Member

    I just started Passage at Arms by Glen Cook. I didn't realize it was set in the universe of his Starfishers trilogy until I saw on Goodreads it's listed as book #4 in the Starfishers trilogy.o_O Really though, it a stand alone set in that universe.
     
  18. Boreas

    Boreas n log(log n) Staff Member

    I didn't read the Starfishers trilogy and didn't suffer for it. "Passage at Arms" completely stands alone. Let me know how you like it. It was definitely one of the better books I read last year. Cook really makes you experience what the tension might be like in a submarine warfare scenario. Very grim and nerve-wracking.
     
  19. Boreas

    Boreas n log(log n) Staff Member

    Finished "Consider Phlebas" a few days ago. I've decided to contain my enthusiasm for the recently released "Seveneves" by Stephenson and am pushing onto "Old Man's War" by John Scalzi, another title that has been on my to be read list for a long, long time. From what I've gathered, it should be a light and fast read.
     
  20. kenubrion

    kenubrion Well-Known Member

    Alien Hunters and Omega Force both failed the "new book and author but still good" test, as did experienced but still crappy author Vaughn Heppner's The Lost Starship series. Now reading Raymond Weil's Galactic Empire Wars.
     
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