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 Recommended Books for Further Reading

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TheDirector



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PostSubject: Recommended Books for Further Reading   Fri Jun 06, 2008 9:18 am

I will post some recommended summer reading here. Others are free to contribute as well.

John Edlund
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TheDirector



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PostSubject: Re: Recommended Books for Further Reading   Fri Jun 06, 2008 9:19 am

I think most of you would like Phillip K. Dick. I usually teach Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? (which was made into the movie Bladerunner), but The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch and Flow My Tears, The Policeman Said are also good. In a Dick novel, there are always moments when neither you the reader, nor the viewpoint character, know what is real and what is not.

Fast-paced and bristling with ideas!

John Edlund
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aitokunaga



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PostSubject: Re: Recommended Books for Further Reading   Sun Jun 08, 2008 4:22 pm

I loved the movie Bladerunner!
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btexpress



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PostSubject: Re: Recommended Books for Further Reading   Mon Jun 09, 2008 6:31 pm

What was the book you mentioned about an assassin's guild? I just wanted to know so I could read it myself.
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btexpress



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PostSubject: Re: Recommended Books for Further Reading   Mon Jun 09, 2008 6:33 pm

I think first Dune book would be good for this class as well as Stranger in a Strange Land by Robert Heinlein. Just a recommendation.
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Derek



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PostSubject: Re: Recommended Books for Further Reading   Mon Jun 09, 2008 6:46 pm

I recommend you select books that are more suspenseful and exciting since it can get quite boring when reading 100+ pages.
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TheDirector



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PostSubject: Re: Recommended Books for Further Reading   Mon Jun 09, 2008 8:03 pm

The Torturers Guild book is the first of this series by Gene Wolfe:

Urth : Book of the New Sun
1. The Shadow of the Torturer (1980)
2. The Claw of the Conciliator (1980)
3. The Sword of the Lictor (1981)
4. The Citadel of the Autarch (1982)

These are currently in print in two omnibus volumes Shadow and Claw and Sword and Citadel.

Highly recommended!

John Edlund
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Multi

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PostSubject: Re: Recommended Books for Further Reading   Mon Jun 09, 2008 9:12 pm

As long as we're putting in our votes for recommended readings, I'd suggest Heinlein's The Moon is a Harsh Mistress over Stranger in a Strange Land because the former is more appropriate and, to me personally, more interesting.

I, however, am one to side with short stories. I recommend reading the synopsis I posted on Phantom Dust. Also, look up Shadow of the Colossus on wikipedia if you haven't already. Unfortunately, there is no great story behind Starcraft or Mechwarrior.

_________________
Shadow of the Colossus, the best form of story telling.
Phantom Dust, awesome plot twists!
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Denise



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PostSubject: Re: Recommended Books for Further Reading   Tue Jun 10, 2008 9:26 am

Speaking of sheep,

There was a movie that came out...I don't know...last year? One of the smaller independent movies. I think it was called Black Sheep. I haven't watched it, but Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep just reminded me of it. hahahha...

The story line was basically testing on the sheep, injecting them with a certain type of drug or whatever, altered their DNA and they became killer sheep. Really scary right? I mean, sheep are docile creatures and here they are, slashing people to bits.

Interesting idea anyway.
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Large Orange Creature

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PostSubject: Re: Recommended Books for Further Reading   Wed Jul 02, 2008 11:42 am

I recently finished The Player of Games by Iain M. Banks (He puts "M." in his name when he writes Science Fiction.) This is the second "Culture" novel, after Consider Phlebas. The most recent "Culture" novel is Excession. In that novel, the galaxy is populated by ship minds with names like Fate Amenable to Change, Steely Glint, Gray Area, Serious Callers Only, and Shoot Them Later. These ship minds are part of The Culture, which is basically Liberal Humanism write large, with a tilt toward AI's and machine minds over "meat" organisms, which nonetheless are entities and must be preserved and protected. Humans live aboard these ships, as well as on carved out asteroids and planets and such. The Culture is oh so ethical. However, some ship minds have left to join the Elench, who don't want to change other cultures but be changed by them, or to become eccentric loners, or otherwise. Enter the Affront, who are Klingon-like, methane-breathing squids who like fighting, conquering, subjugating, torturing, drinking, carousing, gambling, male chauvinism, etc. They used to be called something else, but the race that was sort of attempting to enhance their development got frustrated and called them an "affront" to civilization, and they liked the sound of that, and began calling themselves the Affront. Affronter ships have blades and projections all over them and have names like "Kiss the Blade." The Culture doesn't quite know what to do with The Affront. They would like to wipe them out, but that would be unethical. Anyway, a ship discovers an object that appears to be older than the universe and everything begins moving in that direction, but there is a conspiracy (led by Not Invented Here) to trick the Affront into declaring war on The Culture and otherwise misbehave so that they can ethically be wiped out. Excession is really about the "outside context problem," such as when Cortez lands on a Mexican beach. Suddenly nothing makes sense anymore.

So far all of the "Culture" novels by Banks are complex, full of interesting characters and ideas, and rather amusing. Good, long summer reads.

You can learn more about Banks here:

http://www.iain-banks.net/

LOC
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Large Orange Creature

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PostSubject: Re: Recommended Books for Further Reading   Sun Jul 06, 2008 11:15 am

Another interesting writer is Jack McDevitt. Chindi is about an alien vessel that travels about the universe collecting artifacts of dead civilizations. Seeker and Polaris are essentially mystery stories asking "what really happened to that ship that disappeared?" McDevitt leans toward the hard science genre, but the writing is pretty good and the character development is adequate to good. I would say that the main focus is BIG IDEAS. Certainly worth a try.

LOC
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Large Orange Creature

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PostSubject: Re: Recommended Books for Further Reading   Thu Jul 10, 2008 5:27 pm

My daughter gave me an advance copy of Neal Stephenson's new novel, Anathem. The title is a combination of "anthem" and "anathama." It is about academics living in a Medieval cloister with a high tech society right outside the walls. My daughter characterizes it as being like a combination of Shadow of the Torturer, Harry Potter, and Snowcrash. I just started it, but it looks very cool. The novel comes out in September, so you have to wait a bit.

LOC
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