Although Kindermann presented the story as fiction, almost like a fairy tale, he nevertheless endeavored to root it in as scientific a basis as contemporary knowledge allowed, making it a genuine science-fiction story. Five individuals with the names of the five senses create an airship based on the design proposed in by the Italian Jesuit mathematician Francesco Lana de Terzi.
He believed that a ship with a sail could fly through the air supported by four globes from which the air had been evacuated. Kindermann was aware that Mars was at least 30 million miles distant and, as the airship was travelling at around miles per hour, the journey would have taken over seven years, yet it seems to happen in an instant.
With the help of an angelic spirit guide, the five travelers make their way to the Martian moon. The inhabitants are humanoid and the travelers present themselves as gods. Much of the discussion with the natives is about religion. It transpires that this moon was the first object created by God. Indeed, the natives seem to have a special relationship with God.
In this highly influential work, Fontenelle discusses in a friendly, open style the nature of the heavens and the possibility of life elsewhere. He also speculated that Mars had vast seas that periodically washed over all of the land. There had been a similar idyllic planet in the anonymous A Voyage to the World in the Center of the Earth , where Mars is portrayed like ancient Greece, with the spirits of heroes, lawgivers, musicians and poets.
It was at that time that Asaph Hall discovered the two tiny moons, soon named Phobos and Deimos, and it was also when Giovanni Schiaparelli believed he had observed straight lines on the surface, his so-called canali or channels. His findings, amplified by further observations, were discussed in the scientific community, but Schiaparelli did not claim that these channels had been constructed artificially, and even when the news leaked to the press in it did not cause an immediate stir. Overarching themes on consciousness, transhumanism, humanity and first contact.
This book has everything. The heavens have been silent since—until a derelict space probe hears whispers from a distant comet. Something talks out there: but not to us. Send a pacifist warrior, and a vampire recalled from the grave by the voodoo of paleogenetics. Send a man with half his mind gone since childhood. Send them to the edge of the solar system, praying you can trust such freaks and monsters with the fate of a world.
Prepare for a different kind of singularity in this follow-up to the Hugo-nominated novel Blindsight. It's the eve of the twenty-second century: a world where the dearly departed send postcards back from Heaven and evangelicals make scientific breakthroughs by speaking in tongues; where genetically engineered vampires solve problems intractable to baseline humans and soldiers come with zombie switches that shut off self-awareness during combat. Daniel Bruks is a living fossil: a field biologist in a world where biology has turned computational, a cat's-paw used by terrorists to kill thousands.
But he awakens one night to find himself at the center of a storm that will turn all of history inside-out. To his left is a grief-stricken soldier, obsessed by whispered messages from a dead son. A vampire and its entourage of zombie bodyguards lurk in the shadows behind. Their pilgrimage brings Dan Bruks, the fossil man, face-to-face with the biggest evolutionary breakpoint since the origin of thought itself.
By the end of the 30th century humanity has the capability to travel the universe, to journey beyond earth and beyond the confines of the vulnerable human frame. The descendants of centuries of scientific, cultural and physical development divide into three: fleshers—true Homo sapiens; Gleisner robots—embodying human minds within machines that interact with the physical world; and polises—supercomputers teeming with intelligent software, containing the direct copies of billions of human personalities now existing only in the virtual reality of the polis. Diaspora is the story of Yatima—a polis being created from random mutations of the Konishi polis base mind seed—and of humankind, Of an astrophysical accident that spurs the thousandfold cloning of the polises.
Of the discovery of an alien race and of a kink in time that means humanity—whatever form it takes—will never again be threatened by acts of God. The cheela culturally evolve from savagery to the discovery of science, and for a brief time men are their diligent teachers. Near-future hard Sci-Fi at its best. Lots of awards and endorsements, even a thumbs up from John Carmack. Can't go wrong. In the near future, the experimental nano-drug Nexus can link humans together, mind to mind.
There are some who want to improve it. There are some who want to eradicate it. And there are others who just want to exploit it. From the halls of academe to the halls of power; from the headquarters of an elite agency in Washington, D. With all the ideas contained in Permutation City, a typical Sci-Fi author would have written at least 5 separate books.
9 New Science Fiction Books About Space Travel That Are Out Of This World
In the not-too-distant future, technology has given birth to a form of immortality. A new Copy finds himself forced to cooperate in scientific experiments with the flesh-and-blood man he was copied from. An interesting take on the near-future colonization of Mars by one hundred of the world's greatest scientists, filled with political intrigue and "hard science" alike. For eons, sandstorms have swept the barren desolate landscape of the red planet. For centuries, Mars has beckoned to mankind to come and conquer its hostile climate.
Now, in the year , a group of one hundred colonists is about to fulfill that destiny. For some, Mars will become a passion driving them to daring acts of courage and madness; for others it offers and opportunity to strip the planet of its riches. Twenty thousand years into the future, an experiment in quantum physics has had a catastrophic result, creating an enormous, rapidly expanding vacuum that devours everything it comes in contact with. Now humans must confront this deadly expansion.
Tchicaya, aboard a starship trawling the border of the vacuum, has allied himself with the Yielders—those determined to study the vacuum while allowing it to grow unchecked. But when his fiery first love, Mariama, reenters his life on the side of the Preservationists—those working to halt and destroy the vacuum—Tchicaya finds himself struggling with an inner turmoil he has known since childhood.
However, in the center of the vacuum, something is developing that neither Tchicaya and the Yielders nor Mariama and the Preservationists could ever have imagined possible: life. This is a fun read; Weir manages to write an evocative techno-thriller without having his characters stoop to constant navel gazing and lonesome pining.
This could be described as Robinson Crusoe - in Space. The characters on the earth side aren't the greatest, but the humor throughout the book really pulls it together, and watching a master at work as far as mechanical engineering goes was fascinating. Loved it. Apollo 13 meets Cast Away in this grippingly detailed, brilliantly ingenious man-vs-nature survival thriller, set on the surface of Mars.
Six days ago, astronaut Mark Watney became one of the first men to walk on the surface of Mars. It started with the dust storm that holed his suit and nearly killed him, and that forced his crew to leave him behind, sure he was already dead. Drawing on his ingenuity, his engineering skills—and a relentless, dogged refusal to quit—he steadfastly confronts one seemingly insurmountable obstacle after the next.
But will his resourcefulness be enough to overcome the impossible odds against him? This book is most interesting for its pretty cool take on terraforming a planet, and how that goes both for the inhabitants and what it means for nationalism or planetism, as it were. Space writers holiday. But Martin Gibson, man about space, takes it all in his stride. That is, until he lands on the red planet. This was, I thought, an emotional read. I really connected with the characters and their struggle. It was interesting seeing the ways they overcame each obstacle despite overwhelming odds.
It also shows what could happen when desperate people are left to fend for themselves without a governing force. A major new novel from one of science fiction's most powerful voices, AURORA tells the incredible story of our first voyage beyond the solar system. Brilliantly imagined and beautifully told, it is the work of a writer at the height of his powers.
Future-based novels with advanced science and technology coupled with a disrupted social order. A fun and fast-paced hard-boiled cyberpunk noir, almost impossible to put down. Onetime U. Envoy Takeshi Kovacs has been killed before, but his last death was particularly painful. Resleeved into a body in Bay City formerly San Francisco, Kovacs is thrown into the dark heart of a shady, far-reaching conspiracy that is vicious even by the standards of a society that treats existence as something that can be bought and sold.
For Kovacs, the shell that blew a hole in his chest was only the beginning. Greg Mandel, late of the Mindstar Battalion, has been many things in his life. Freedom fighter. In the high-tech, hard-edged world of computer crime, zero-gravity smuggling, and artificial intelligence, Greg Mandel is the man to call when things get rough. But when an elusive saboteur plagues a powerful organization known as Event Horizon, Mandel must cut his way through a maze of corporate intrigue and startling new scientific discoveries.
The Matrix is a world within the world, a global consensus hallucination, the representation of every byte of data in cyberspace…. Case had been the sharpest data-thief in the business, until vengeful former employers crippled his nervous system. But now a new and very mysterious employer recruits him for a last-chance run. The target: an unthinkably powerful artificial intelligence orbiting Earth in service of the sinister Tessier-Ashpool business clan.
With a dead man riding shotgun and Molly, mirror-eyed street-samurai, to watch his back, Case embarks on an adventure that ups the ante on an entire genre of fiction. I think of this book often, even though initially I had consigned it as a cheap paperback crime thriller set in space. The main part of this book that is interesting is the implications regarding policed thoughts, especially given recent advances in government surveillance. The other part of this book I think about a lot is the advertising jingle - Tenser, Tenser, said the tensor - which plays a major role. I've still got no idea what it is meant to mean.
In a world in which the police have telepathic powers, how do you get away with murder? Ben Reichs heads a huge 24th century business empire, spanning the solar system. He is also an obsessed, driven man determined to murder a rival. To avoid capture, in a society where murderers can be detected even before they commit their crime, is the greatest challenge of his life.
This book had me looking up more words than any book had me do for a long time. A mildly interesting story, with cunning turns and twists, in a very interesting world. It is to some extent a science fiction coming-of-age story, focused on a young girl named Nell, and set in a future world in which nanotechnology affects all aspects of life. The novel deals with themes of education, social class, ethnicity, and the nature of artificial intelligence.
This book is fantastic not for the novelty of non-technological teleportation, but because of the main character. What happens when someone who has been ignored by society finds himself in a position of power?
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This book reminds me a tiny bit of Ender's Game - imagine what would happen if Mazer Rackham, another tattooed Maori hero, wanted more than to be a military genius. I quote the poem to myself all the time, and have set a variant of it as my twitter bio for years now. The Stars My Destination is a classic of technological prophecy and timeless narrative enchantment by an acknowledged master of science fiction. But now Cobb is just an aging alcoholic waiting to die, and the big boppers are threatening to absorb all of the little boppers—and eventually every human—into a giant, melded consciousness.
My favorite of Murakami's. Great mix of quirky, mundane, and fascinating ideas. Short read too. Dystopian novels deal with imaginary communities or societies that are undesirable or frightening. No one can deny the power of this novel, its hold on the imaginations of entire generations of readers, or the resiliency of its admonitions—a legacy that seems to grow, not lessen, with the passage of time.
Better than the movie IMHO. Written in a slang language called Nadsat, the book really draws you into the world Alex occupies, as opposed to Kubrick's version of the story, portrayed in the movie. The endings are also different! A vicious fifteen-year-old "droog" is the central character of this classic, whose stark terror was captured in Stanley Kubrick's magnificent film of the same title. In Anthony Burgess's nightmare vision of the future, where criminals take over after dark, the story is told by the central character, Alex, who talks in a brutal invented slang that brilliantly renders his and his friends' social pathology.
A Clockwork Orange is a frightening fable about good and evil, and the meaning of human freedom. When the state undertakes to reform Alex — to "redeem" him — the novel asks, "At what cost? This book is insidiously horrifying in its applicability, more so than or Fahrenheit Here's a comic that sums up the difference. Well worth the read. Far in the future, the World Controllers have created the ideal society. Through clever use of genetic engineering, brainwashing and recreational sex and drugs, all its members are happy consumers.
Bernard Marx seems alone harbouring an ill-defined longing to break free. A visit to one of the few remaining Savage Reservations, where the old, imperfect life still continues, may be the cure for his distress…. One of my favorite trilogies! Divergent is a young adult science fiction trilogy. This book is about a dystopian Chicago society divided by five factions: Abnegation, Erudite, Dauntless, Amity, and Candor. Factions that were created to maintain peace within the society. In this book you follow the story of Beatrice, who's decisions leads her to discover who she really is and what is really happening.
Through the trilogy you are able to see how the character evolves and becomes more mature with her decisions I highly recommend this book! The ending of the trilogy left me astonished for 3 days after I finished it! In Beatrice Prior's dystopian Chicago world, society is divided into five factions, each dedicated to the cultivation of a particular virtue—Candor the honest , Abnegation the selfless , Dauntless the brave , Amity the peaceful , and Erudite the intelligent.
On an appointed day of every year, all sixteen-year-olds must select the faction to which they will devote the rest of their lives. For Beatrice, the decision is between staying with her family and being who she really is—she can't have both. So she makes a choice that surprises everyone, including herself. During the highly competitive initiation that follows, Beatrice renames herself Tris and struggles alongside her fellow initiates to live out the choice they have made. Together they must undergo extreme physical tests of endurance and intense psychological simulations, some with devastating consequences.
As initiation transforms them all, Tris must determine who her friends really are—and where, exactly, a romance with a sometimes fascinating, sometimes exasperating boy fits into the life she's chosen. But Tris also has a secret, one she's kept hidden from everyone because she's been warned it can mean death. And as she discovers unrest and growing conflict that threaten to unravel her seemingly perfect society, she also learns that her secret might help her save those she loves. A classic, beautiful book. A short read that does a good job of making the reader think about the ramifications of censorship, and is still entertaining and beautiful in its own way.
Guy Montag is a fireman. His job is to burn books, which are forbidden, being the source of all discord and unhappiness. Even so, Montag is unhappy; there is discord in his marriage. Are books hidden in his house? The Mechanical Hound of the Fire Department, armed with a lethal hypodermic, escorted by helicopters, is ready to track down those dissidents who defy society to preserve and read books. This book is a wonderfully constructed tale that can be seen as warning for an age where genetic engineering is up and coming and we haven't the faintest clue where this might lead us.
9 New Science Fiction Books About Space Travel That Are Out Of This World
I loved it to bits and only found out there was a sequel by reading about the final episode coming out when I was well done with the first part and devoured the other two as eagerly as the first. That said, I find the first the best of the three books. Oryx and Crake is at once an unforgettable love story and a compelling vision of the future. Snowman, known as Jimmy before mankind was overwhelmed by a plague, is struggling to survive in a world where he may be the last human, and mourning the loss of his best friend, Crake, and the beautiful and elusive Oryx whom they both loved.
In search of answers, Snowman embarks on a journey—with the help of the green-eyed Children of Crake—through the lush wilderness that was so recently a great city, until powerful corporations took mankind on an uncontrolled genetic engineering ride. Margaret Atwood projects us into a near future that is both all too familiar and beyond our imagining. This is easily in one of my top 5 favorite books I've ever read. It's SO fun to read, and every single person I've recommended it to has loved it. Even if you don't understand every single reference, it's still a great story to follow.
It has an excellent amount of humor, adventure, and nostalgia. It also has one of the best endings I've ever read, which any reader knows is a hard thing to nail. Ernest Cline really hit it out of the park with this one. Highly recommend it. The plot is great, the writing is great, it makes you laugh out loud if you're a geek and know the references, and the story is kickass. Warning: Might be a good idea to brush up on your old school fantasy and scifi before reading this. Just don't go rewatch Krull, OK? Like most of humanity, Wade Watts escapes his grim surroundings by spending his waking hours jacked into the OASIS, a sprawling virtual utopia that lets you be anything you want to be, a place where you can live and play and fall in love on any of ten thousand planets.
And like most of humanity, Wade dreams of being the one to discover the ultimate lottery ticket that lies concealed within this virtual world. For somewhere inside this giant networked playground, OASIS creator James Halliday has hidden a series of fiendish puzzles that will yield massive fortune—and remarkable power—to whoever can unlock them. Suddenly the whole world is watching, and thousands of competitors join the hunt—among them certain powerful players who are willing to commit very real murder to beat Wade to this prize. Now the only way for Wade to survive and preserve everything he knows is to win.
Sci-Fi, sociology and philosophy. Shevek, a brilliant physicist, decides to take action. He will seek answers, question the unquestionable, and attempt to tear down the walls of hatred that have isolated his planet of anarchists from the rest of the civilized universe.
To do this dangerous task will mean giving up his family and possibly his life—Shevek must make the unprecedented journey to the utopian mother planet, Urras, to challenge the complex structures of life and living, and ignite the fires of change. An interesting take on the possibly negative consequences of the singularity.
A little more vulgar than the average Sci-Fi novel. In a time not far from our own, Lawrence sets out simply to build an artificial intelligence that can pass as human, and finds himself instead with one that can pass as a god. Taking the Three Laws of Robotics literally, Prime Intellect makes every human immortal and provides instantly for every stated human desire.
Caroline finds no meaning in this life of purposeless ease, and forgets her emptiness only in moments of violent and profane exhibitionism. At turns shocking and humorous, Prime Intellect looks unflinchingly at extremes of human behavior that might emerge when all limits are removed. Set in the near future, the story follows a number of characters as their lives unfold living in an underground silo. Life underground seems quite grim, people have obviously been down there quite a while, and even though they seem to have quite advanced technology, it's old and decaying.
The engineers and mechanics do their best to keep the electricity throughout the levels of the silo, it's a lottery to see who gets to start a family as the population needs to be strictly controlled. It's set close enough to the present that you can see how things could end up the way they are in the silo, the political structures, the way the silo is organized, the rivalry between the various levels and departments; but what happened to lead to humanity living this way in the first place? Why are they all down there, and what's wrong with the surface?
This series of books is well worth a read, I couldn't put it down once I got into the first few chapters. I think this series will be recognized as a sci-fi classic in the coming years. Also, the first book is available free on Kindle, so it won't cost you anything to check it out - except maybe a Kindle. This Omnibus Edition collects the five Wool books into a single volume. It is for those who arrived late to the party and who wish to save a dollar or two while picking up the same stories in a single package.
This is the story of mankind clawing for survival, of mankind on the edge.
100 Must-Read Young Adult Science Fiction Books
The world outside has grown unkind, the view of it limited, talk of it forbidden. But there are always those who hope, who dream. These are the dangerous people, the residents who infect others with their optimism. Their punishment is simple. They are given the very thing they profess to want: They are allowed outside. The debut novel from the guy who would go on to write Half-Life and Portal. A dizzyingly funny dystopia straight from the heart of the 80s. Deftly manages the tightrope walk of absurdity without the world crumbling underneath it.
Philip K. Dick would be proud. The US is divided into independent, heavily defended neighborhoods; Cobblestone Hill is a planned, self-sufficient community, dreamed up and secretly controlled by the mysterious Doc Edison; here Dad Johnson struggles to raise his oddball family and defend his house against potentially hostile neighbors.
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One-upmanship is still alive, though, and when Jock Smith plants a rocket launcher in his backyard, Dad responds with a nuclear reactor in his garage. Doc Edison thoughtfully gene-splices the new Johnson baby so that she eats nuclear waste. Dad's son P. Dad's wife Connie runs off with a salesman from the ubiquitous Cartel; a bunch of Doc Edison clones show up, all quite mad; the Christian Soldiers attempt a computerized invasion; and the feud between Dad and Jock Smith comes to a head.
My favourite of all Philip K. Dick's novels, the I Ching and the alternate history within an alternate history novel being interesting elements. An alternate history novel set in , fifteen years after an alternate ending to World War II which in the novel lasted until , the novel concerns intrigues between the victorious Axis Powers—Imperial Japan and Nazi Germany—as they rule over the former United States, as well as daily life under the resulting totalitarian rule.
A bleak and haunting tale, easy to picture playing out in today's political climate. There's a reason the TV series adaptation is popular.
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Set in the near future, it describes life in what was once the United States, now called the Republic of Gilead, a monotheocracy that has reacted to social unrest and a sharply declining birthrate by reverting to, and going beyond, the repressive intolerance of the original Puritans.
The regime takes the Book of Genesis absolutely at its word, with bizarre consequences for the women and men of its population. Novels which emphasize adventure, set mainly or entirely in outer space, usually involving conflict between opponents possessing advanced abilities, weapons, and other technology. And all the following Ancillary Sword. Once, she was the Justice of Toren—a colossal starship with an artificial intelligence linking thousands of soldiers in the service of the Radch, the empire that conquered the galaxy.
Now, an act of treachery has ripped it all away, leaving her with one fragile human body, unanswered questions, and a burning desire for vengeance. Earth has been dominated for 1, years by an alien invader—and man is an endangered species. From the handful of surviving humans a courageous leader emerges—Jonnie Goodboy Tyler, who challenges the invincible might of the alien Psychlo empire in a battle of epic scale, danger and intrigue with the fate of the Earth and of the universe in the tenuous balance.
And the sequels in the Void Trilogy. The year is At the farthest edge of the Commonwealth, astronomer Dudley Bose observes the impossible: Over one thousand light-years away, a star… vanishes. It does not go supernova. It does not collapse into a black hole. It simply disappears. Since the location is too distant to reach by wormhole, a faster-than-light starship, the Second Chance, is dispatched to learn what has occurred and whether it represents a threat. Opposed to the mission are the Guardians of Selfhood, a cult that believes the human race is being manipulated by an alien entity they call the Starflyer.
Pursued by a Commonwealth special agent convinced the Guardians are crazy but dangerous, Johansson flees. But the danger is not averted. Aboard the Second Chance, Kime wonders if his crew has been infiltrated. Soon enough, he will have other worries. A thousand light-years away, something truly incredible is waiting: a deadly discovery whose unleashing will threaten to destroy the Commonwealth… and humanity itself. Could it be that Johansson was right? The war raged across the galaxy. Billions had died, billions more were doomed.
Moons, planets, the very stars themselves, faced destruction, cold-blooded, brutal, and worse, random. The Idirans fought for their Faith; the Culture for its moral right to exist. Principles were at stake. There could be no surrender. Lawrence Newton, a dreamer whose twenty years as a Skin have destroyed his hopes and desires; Denise Ebourn, a school teacher and resistance leader whose guerrilla tactics rival those of Che Guevara and George Washington and Simon Roderick, the director who serves Z-B with a dedication that not even he himself can understand.
Grimly determined to steal, or protect, a mysterious treasure, the three players engage in a private war that will explode into unimaginable quests for personal grace… or galactic domination. Six million years ago, at the dawn of the star-faring era, Abigail Gentian fractured herself into a thousand male and female clones, which she called shatterlings.
But now, someone is eliminating the Gentian line. Campion and Purslane—two shatterlings who have fallen in love and shared forbidden experiences—must determine exactly who, or what, their enemy is, before they are wiped out of existence. On the world called Hyperion, beyond the law of the Hegemony of Man, there waits the creature called the Shrike. There are those who worship it. There are those who fear it. And there are those who have vowed to destroy it. In the Valley of the Time Tombs, where huge, brooding structures move backward through time, the Shrike waits for them all.
On the eve of Armageddon, with the entire galaxy at war, seven pilgrims set forth on a final voyage to Hyperion seeking the answers to the unsolved riddles of their lives. Each carries a desperate hope—and a terrible secret. And one may hold the fate of humanity in his hands. A stunning tour de force filled with transcendent awe and wonder, Hyperion is a masterwork of science fiction that resonates with excitement and invention, the first volume in a remarkable new science fiction epic by the multiple-award-winning author of The Hollow Man.
The trilogy is set in a universe with a wealth of worlds and artificial orbiting colonies. Hamilton re-set several earlier short stories in the Confederation timeline, published as the collection A Second Chance at Eden , including the newly written title novella. Novels concerning the end of civilization, usually based in a future resulting from a catastrophe of some sort, where only scattered elements of technology remain. This has a particularly arid and inspired view of humanity after a nuclear holocaust.
The discovery of small things and their new importance down the line is well done here. Winner of the Hugo Award for Best Novel and widely considered one of the most accomplished, powerful, and enduring classics of modern speculative fiction, Walter M. Miller, Jr. In a nightmarish ruined world slowly awakening to the light after sleeping in darkness, the infant rediscoveries of science are secretly nourished by cloistered monks dedicated to the study and preservation of the relics and writings of the blessed Saint Isaac Leibowitz.
From here the story spans centuries of ignorance, violence, and barbarism, viewing through a sharp, satirical eye the relentless progression of a human race damned by its inherent humanness to recelebrate its grand foibles and repeat its grievous mistakes. Seriously funny, stunning, and tragic, eternally fresh, imaginative, and altogether remarkable, A Canticle for Leibowitz retains its ability to enthrall and amaze. It is now, as it always has been, a masterpiece.
A weird, beautiful book, reminiscent of Lovecraft, Stephen King, and Brautigan's Watermelon Sugar all wrapped up in a post-apocalyptic landscape populated by poisonous fire-breathing bears and deprecated biotech. This book is a survival story - how to hang on to the edges of civilization, and what that means for humanity. It also questions identity, love, mothering, and meaning itself.
Some of the passages were astoundingly beautiful, and as much as the world would be an awful place to live in, I found myself missing it when I finished. In the ruins of a nameless city of the future, ruled by a giant grizzly called Mord, a woman named Rachel lives as a scavenger, collecting genetically engineered organisms and experiments created by the biotech firm the Company. Hidden in Mord's fur, she finds a sea anemone shaped creature she calls Borne.
A final, apocalyptic, world war has killed millions, driving entire species into extinction and sending the majority of mankind off-planet. Those who remain, venerate all remaining examples of life, and owning an animal of your own is both a symbol of status and a necessity. Highly plausible outcome after a near-extinction event, the human race will hopelessly go down the path of least resistance. Great and somewhat disheartening ending. A disease of unparalleled destructive force has sprung up almost simultaneously in every corner of the globe, all but destroying the human race.
One survivor, strangely immune to the effects of the epidemic, ventures forward to experience a world without man. What he ultimately discovers will prove far more astonishing than anything he'd either dreaded or hoped for. I traveled miles from Edinburgh to Kent just to go to the Canterbury Cathedral to see the painting that inspired this book. It is that good. It was hard for me to read as I normally speed read, and the invented language makes it slow going, but it sticks with you and the imagination of Hoban is uniquely vivid. Riddley Walker is a brilliant, unique, completely realized work of fiction.
One reads it again and again, discovering new wonders every time through. Set in a remote future in a post-nuclear holocaust England Inland , Hoban has imagined a humanity regressed to an iron-age, semi-literate state—and invented a language to represent it. Riddley is at once the Huck Finn and the Stephen Dedalus of his culture—rebel, change agent, and artist. Read again or for the first time this masterpiece of 20th-century literature with new material by the author. One of Arthur C.
Clarke's best novels. It makes Childhood's End seem a bit immature in comparison, and evokes that strange concept of deep space that was prevalent in the 50s and in the early Star Trek series which seems to be out of fashion more recently. The City and the Stars takes place one billion years in the future, in the city of Diaspar.
By this time, the Earth is so old that the oceans have gone and humanity has all but left. As far as the people of Diaspar know, they are the only city left on the planet. The city of Diaspar is completely enclosed. Nobody has come in or left the city for as long as anybody can remember, and everybody in Diaspar has an instinctive insular conservatism. The story behind this fear of venturing outside the city tells of a race of ruthless invaders which beat humanity back from the stars to Earth, and then made a deal that humanity could live—if they never left the planet.
This had some very haunting scenes. The last pages, in particular, will stick with me for a while. First published in , J. Set during the year , the novel follows biologist Dr. Robert Kerans and his team of scientists as they confront a surreal cityscape populated by giant iguanas, albino alligators, and endless swarms of malarial insects. Nature has swallowed all but a few remnants of human civilization, and, slowly, Kerans and his companions are transformed—both physically and psychologically—by this prehistoric environment.
A short and rather old post-apocalyptic story which remained stuck in my mind like a ROM data. Being under strong impressions after consuming it in an instant, I described this rare pearl of a story to a Norwegian NTNU professor. You'll definitely want to read about this machine out of wedlock between 'Facebook' and 'Google' from the beginning of 20th century. I have yet to see other such power of prediction as to where the world is now or might go. Advice to readers: Keep in mind while reading that the text has been coined about years ago - it's part of the magic.
The story, set in a post-apocalyptic world where humanity lives underground and relies on a giant machine to provide their needs, predicted new technologies such as instant messaging, and the Internet. It describes a world in which most of the human population has lost the ability to live on the surface of the Earth. Don't let that fool you, though: The book's exploration of multiculture, multispecies conflict with aliens called the Geck works just as much intriguing worldbuilding into the mix as her previous books. Plus, there are mind-controlled robots, stolen alien ships and a society with three genders.
As multiple viewpoint characters are ensnared in a system-wide mystery, the story's scope slowly broadens to reveal the full complexity of the novels' science fiction world. The books, co-written by Dan Abraham and Ty Franck, originally stemmed from a tabletop roleplaying game idea , and it shows through the detailed worldbuilding and exploration of a solar system remade in humanity's image.
Plus, it's a fun, tightly-plotted set of spacefaring adventure stories. The series is slated for nine books, and they've appeared steadily one per year from for a total of five so far plus some tie-in novellas. They're also the basis for Syfy's TV show "The Expanse," recently renewed for a episode second season. Book six, "Babylon's Ashes," is slated for release December After numerous novels and short stories probing humanity's trials in the near future, far future and distant past, science fiction master Kim Stanley Robinson offers his own highly detailed spin on the challenge of interstellar travel in his new book "Aurora" Orbit, Humanity's first trip to another star is incredibly ambitious, impeccably planned and executed on a grand scale in "Aurora.
Told largely from the perspective of the ship's computer, "Aurora" emphasizes the fragile unity of all the living and nonliving parts aboard the starship as it hurtles through space. As the story of the landing unfolds, the narrative doesn't shy away from the science or the incredible complexity of a 2,person, multigenerational ship.
The spacecraft is portrayed as one organism that can have conflicting interests or fall out of balance but that ultimately has to work in concert to reach its destination intact. In case you haven't heard of him, Ray Bradbury is an icon of science fiction writing. In "The Martian Chronicles," Bradbury explores the gradual human settlement of the Red Planet, through a series of lightly connected stories. Bradbury paints the Martian landscape and its inhabitants with master strokes, but equally strong is his portrayal of the psychological dangers that await the human settlers who arrive there.
This, as well as the space-themed stories in Bradbury's other classic collection "The Illustrated Man," struck a chord with me when I was young and dreamed about traveling to the stars. Reading his work today, it is amazing to see that although Bradbury writes from a time when human space travel hadn't yet begun the book was first published in , the issues and questions his stories raise are still relevant as humanity takes its first steps into that great frontier.
This classic science fiction novel by Orson Scott Card should be ever-present on any space fan's bookshelf. Card's novel follows the life of Ender Wiggin as he learns to fight the Formics, a horrifying alien race that almost killed off all humans when they attacked years and years ago. Wiggin learns the art of space war aboard a military space station built to help train young people to fight the cosmic invaders.
Basically, this book is a coming-of-age tale that makes you want to fly to space and also forces you to think about some serious social issues presented in its pages. The book is the first in a quintet, and inspired a much larger body of work that takes place in the same universe. Weir tells the story of Mark Watney, a fictional NASA astronaut stranded on Mars, and his difficult mission to save himself from potential doom in the harsh Red Planet environment.