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 Post subject: Science Fictionn Yes or No
PostPosted: Thu Oct 04, 2018 6:36 pm 
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King of Cool
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This a unique thread, I'm going to list some well-known fiction novel titles that I am thinking about maybe picking up and I to anyone here who has read them I want a one-word answer 'yes' or 'no', it is worth reading, yes or no. I don't want any more detail than that.

Childhood's End By Arthur C Clarke

Rendezvous with Rama by Arthur C Clarke

Any of the sequels to 2001

The Moon is A Harsh Mistress by Robert Heinlein (I know there have been 1,000 discussions about Heinlein, but I can never remember which of his books you say are the 'good' ones and which are the one to avoid)

The Forever War by Joe Haldeman

You can tell at the moment I'm mostly interested in Arthur C Clarke

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 Post subject: Re: Science Fictionn Yes or No
PostPosted: Thu Oct 04, 2018 6:54 pm 
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Yes.
Yes if you liked Childhood's End.
No.
Yes.
Never read it.

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 Post subject: Re: Science Fictionn Yes or No
PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2018 7:53 am 
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Doom wrote:
This a unique thread, I'm going to list some well-known fiction novel titles that I am thinking about maybe picking up and I to anyone here who has read them I want a one-word answer 'yes' or 'no', it is worth reading, yes or no. I don't want any more detail than that.

Childhood's End By Arthur C Clarke

Rendezvous with Rama by Arthur C Clarke

Any of the sequels to 2001

The Moon is A Harsh Mistress by Robert Heinlein (I know there have been 1,000 discussions about Heinlein, but I can never remember which of his books you say are the 'good' ones and which are the one to avoid)

The Forever War by Joe Haldeman

You can tell at the moment I'm mostly interested in Arthur C Clarke


Yes.
Yes.
No.
Yes.
Yes.

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 Post subject: Re: Science Fictionn Yes or No
PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2018 8:21 am 
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So, everyone seems to agree that 2010 et al are not worth my time. Well, everyone hasn't spoken up yet, but 2-0 seems like a pretty strong dis-recommendation. They are short books, and I might pick up the audiobooks sometime just and listen to them over a weekend just to say that I did.

I thought you guys had said that 'The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress' was one of the good ones, but I couldn't remember. I do remember everyone hated 'Stranger in a Strange a Strange Land' and 'Time Enough for Love', and that the juveniles like "Starship Troopers" (which I have read) and "Have Spacesuit, Will Travel" were his best work.

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 Post subject: Re: Science Fictionn Yes or No
PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2018 9:10 am 
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Yes.
No.
No.
Yes.
Yes.

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 Post subject: Re: Science Fictionn Yes or No
PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2018 9:18 am 
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Highlander wrote:
Yes.
No.
No.
Yes.
Yes.


Doom's ukase on comments prevents expanding on just why #2 gets a yes.

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 Post subject: Re: Science Fictionn Yes or No
PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2018 9:35 am 
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GKC wrote:

Doom's ukase on comments prevents expanding on just why #2 gets a yes.


Why? I'm aware that it is a first part of what became a series, and that Clarke wasn't exactly great at writing sequels.

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 Post subject: Re: Science Fictionn Yes or No
PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2018 9:36 am 
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Doom wrote:
So, everyone seems to agree that 2010 et al are not worth my time. Well, everyone hasn't spoken up yet, but 2-0 seems like a pretty strong dis-recommendation. They are short books, and I might pick up the audiobooks sometime just and listen to them over a weekend just to say that I did.

I thought you guys had said that 'The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress' was one of the good ones, but I couldn't remember. I do remember everyone hated 'Stranger in a Strange a Strange Land' and 'Time Enough for Love', and that the juveniles like "Starship Troopers" (which I have read) and "Have Spacesuit, Will Travel" were his best work.


STARSHIP TROOPERS began as a juvie, in RAH's mind, grew up in the writing, was rejected by his long time publisher, for that reason. From my comments, you might gather that his juvies were my favorite of his work, but I think his overall impact in the Future History series represent his best work. But nothing compares to ROLLING STONES, or BETWEEN PLANETS. IMO.

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 Post subject: Re: Science Fictionn Yes or No
PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2018 9:42 am 
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Doom wrote:
GKC wrote:

Doom's ukase on comments prevents expanding on just why #2 gets a yes.


Why? I'm aware that it is a first part of what became a series, and that Clarke wasn't exactly great at writing sequels.



RAMA gets a Yes because it has the distinction of being the best SF book I've ever read in which nothing happens.

And Clarke didn't actually write the sequels.

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 Post subject: Re: Science Fictionn Yes or No
PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2018 10:03 am 
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GKC wrote:


RAMA gets a Yes because it has the distinction of being the best SF book I've ever read in which nothing happens.



I thought 2001 got that distinction, the movie even more than the book.

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 Post subject: Re: Science Fictionn Yes or No
PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2018 11:30 am 
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Doom wrote:
GKC wrote:


RAMA gets a Yes because it has the distinction of being the best SF book I've ever read in which nothing happens.



I thought 2001 got that distinction, the movie even more than the book.


No, RAMA wins.

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 Post subject: Re: Science Fictionn Yes or No
PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2018 12:20 pm 
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It's true. Even less happens in Rama than in 2001.

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 Post subject: Re: Science Fictionn Yes or No
PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2018 1:27 pm 
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Exactly. Plot can be overvalued, but sans plot......

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 Post subject: Re: Science Fictionn Yes or No
PostPosted: Mon Oct 08, 2018 10:40 am 
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Childhood's End By Arthur C Clarke - YES

Rendezvous with Rama by Arthur C Clarke - YES

Any of the sequels to 2001 - 2010, YES*, the remainder NO

The Moon is A Harsh Mistress by Robert Heinlein - YES

The Forever War by Joe Haldeman - YES

*Just FYI, 2010 is a sequel to the movie version of 2001 - not the book.

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 Post subject: Re: Science Fictionn Yes or No
PostPosted: Mon Oct 08, 2018 10:41 am 
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Obi-Wan Kenobi wrote:
Never read it.

Sad!

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 Post subject: Re: Science Fictionn Yes or No
PostPosted: Wed Oct 10, 2018 5:18 pm 
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I finished 'Childhod's End' today, it is a very interesting story, but I do not buy the premise at all.

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 Post subject: Re: Science Fictionn Yes or No
PostPosted: Wed Oct 10, 2018 7:35 pm 
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Doom wrote:
I finished 'Childhod's End' today, it is a very interesting story, but I do not buy the premise at all.


I'm dubious myself. I detest SF with transcendentally superior aliens.

But, of course, I am happy to welcome our new Overlords.

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 Post subject: Re: Science Fictionn Yes or No
PostPosted: Wed Oct 10, 2018 8:24 pm 
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I can't be the only reader who thought that it was odd that militant atheist Arthur C Clarke would see the solution to all of life's problem in the intervention of a nearly omnipotent and omniscient alien race who serve an all-powerful 'overmind' and think that Clarke was basically appealing to God without calling him 'God'.

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 Post subject: Re: Science Fictionn Yes or No
PostPosted: Wed Oct 10, 2018 9:19 pm 
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Doom wrote:
I can't be the only reader who thought that it was odd that militant atheist Arthur C Clarke would see the solution to all of life's problem in the intervention of a nearly omnipotent and omniscient alien race who serve an all-powerful 'overmind' and think that Clarke was basically appealing to God without calling him 'God'.



Nope. You aren't.

Clarke made a remark or two on that point. CHILDHOOD'S END was written (adapting the earlier short story "Guardian Angels"- early 50s) at a time when, as Clarke said, he still was quite impressed by evidence for what is usually called the paranormal. Later, life experiences made him, as he said, an almost total skeptic. See McAleer's authorized bio of Clarke, pp 90-91.

Have I ever mentioned my SF reference library?

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 Post subject: Re: Science Fictionn Yes or No
PostPosted: Wed Oct 10, 2018 10:14 pm 
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Childhood's End is the first (AFAIK) in the transcendence genre, which ends with the human race, or at least a member or more thereof, being transformed into superior beings. 2001 is another. I slogged my way through an entire trilogy with interesting ideas throughout only to discover that I'd just read 1000+ pages for yet another transcendence payoff. I was not amused.

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