Anyone know any good new SF writers?

Thor

Jedi Master
Tigersoap said:
Ah thanks Thors, I forgot about China Mieville as well but it's not really sci-fi at all, more like a fantasy world with magic and some steam-punk technology thrown in it.

I really like the world he created through his Perdido Street Station and The Scar books.
I thought that he described some kind of police state overshadowing the city but it's more a background than anything else if I recall correctly.

Tigersoap,
I am glad that others like him, too. I agree that Mieville is definitely not Sci-Fi proper. I recall the owner of the sci-fi book shop looked at me ominously and declared the genre to be "dark urban fantasy". However, he is so good that if you like imaginary worlds you will most likely like the New Crobuzon setting. His third book, The Iron Council could just not keep up with the first two but for readers wanting a little more of the magic, he has written a collection of short stories called Looking For Jake, where the last story is a great taste of the first two novels.

If you have come across anything like him, please let me know, as that is rare, indeed :)
 

Woodsman

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
I've not been into science fiction lately, but rather more into stories which explore merging realities and reality curtains breaking down.

I think that there are some really powerful messages coming through from that, "army of Aryan psychic projectors" -or whoever it is who can take credit for those idea waves which whammie culture with messages from the other side. (Or whatever it is that's going on.) It seems easy enough to spot an idea wave; they're the ones which all present the same concept but which were obviously produced at around the same time by creators and creative teams which had no contact with one another. It's neat to see how different awareness lenses, (creative minds), will spin a similar (identical?) influence.

Anyway. . .

Jasper Fforde is, I think, a new author to keep an eye on. His stuff is funny, smart and really keeps the mind moving. He's also British, which gives his humor that. . , um British edge. I started with the "Eyre Affair" (his first in the Thursday Next series), and thought he'd have trouble taking it up further, but they just kept getting more intriguing. That author seems very plugged in, in my opinion.

http://www.jasperfforde.com/

I also liked "Replay" by Ken Grimwood. Though, that's an older book, time loops are similarly interesting for me.
 

Woodsman

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
Just finished "Shades of Grey" by Jasper Fford, (my new favorite author!)

He's one of those writers who is very plugged in, understands a lot more than he lets on and who is broadcasting a lot of neuron-sparking ideas to the public but who has managed to somehow sneak by the thought police.

His books are about the war for and against perception and ascension, but all done through metaphor. Really cool stuff.

"Shades of Grey" is rather like "The Giver" but brought up to date.

You know that metaphor sometimes used to explain perception? It goes like this: "If the world could only see in black and white, the one person able to see in color would be considered insane."

He takes that concept and massively expands upon it. There's a very "Alternative 3" feel to it as well. I found it absolutely fascinating.
 

skycsil

Jedi Master
Perhaps you know her already, but I must recommend Ursula K. Le Guin. Specially "The Disposessed".
Jack Vance's "The Languages Of Pao" is an interesting book about linguistics and societies.
And, of course, Aldous Huxley.
 

Maia

Jedi
Right now I have just purchased The Last Ferry To Clover Bay by Dr. Wayne E. Haley and The Hangman's Daughter by Oliver Potzsch.

I'm signing off now to begin reading The Last Ferry will update later when I'm done.
finish reading obernewtyn Book 1 and then beginning The Last Ferry.

Normally I read political, conspiracies and books dealing with our current (supposed) reality is about.

But, after the Gulf Oil Gusher (It was never a spill), the birds, fish and coral reef dying, the never ending wars in the middle east, and all the rest of earths miseries - I find in order to keep my sanity, I need to break away and read something in the realm of light fantasy for a bit.

Obernewtyn Book 1 I have about 7 more pages to completion. It's a good book if you can over look the fact that the proof reader didn't do his/her job very well.

I found the story line (post apocalyptic) entertaining. It has to do with after "The Big White" many of the children born had altered DNA to the point where they are now telepathic and these individuals are claimed "misfits" and taken to a research lab for a yet unknown purpose.

Some of the older "misfits" are burned.............society has been thrown back to the middle ages again.

I thought I was strange but in many ways I identify with the main charactor, Elspeth (Elf). Yes, it's probably one of those books the rest of you will pick up and laugh at, but to me, it's a stress relief and enjoyable.

Sometimes, and laugh at me all you want - sometimes I do know what some animals are thinking, literally. That's why, when I worked on a dairy farm in my preteen years, I could always get double the milk from the "girls". I knew how to talk to them.

I guess you might say as far as book reading, for now I am taking a sabbatical. ;)
 

Maia

Jedi
I also forgot: I got my grand daughter Scott Westerfeld's "The Midnighters" series, books 1 The Secret Hour, book 2 Touching Darkness and book 3 Blue Noon.

Now before I give her any book, I always read it first because she is nine. This book is listed as "young adult".

It dealt with time, different dimensions, portals and beings not from 3d.

I haven't given her the books yet. I did enjoy them and found they held my interest and were enjoyable reads.

Have also purchased and read Scott Westerfeld's "Uglies" Series (1) Uglies (2) Pretties and (3) Specials.

The Uglies series makes a statement about looks and living in a secure police state, drained of all individuality vs living your own life, on your own terms and - well I don't want to give any spoilers. But, nothing comes free, with no strings attached.

I will eventually give my grand daughter both sets of books, but personally, I really enjoyed Scott Westerfeld's writing style.

All six books, I purchased second hand at Amazon.com
 

findit

Jedi
Just finished reading Patrick Rothfuss "Wise Man's Fear" Yes, it's fantasy and it's book number 2, but I was thoroughly impressed with this book and he definitely knows about Gurdjieff, and the Templars. Many lessons in this book beyond just the storyline. 997 pages went by pretty quickly.
 

CaptNova

A Disturbance in the Force
One book that I enjoyed was called the Unincorperated Man by Dani and Eytan Kollin. The book is critical of Libertarianism like 1984 is critical of Socialism and Brave New World is of conditioning and eugenics.
 

Don Diego

Jedi Master
The one I've prefered in my younger years was A.E Van Vogt,He sounded,for me,much more real and coherent than for example Asimov
 

Maia

Jedi
I'm reading The Second Ship by Richard Phillips and just ordered Immune by him on Lulu dot com. You can get a 3.00 off coupon for this at retailmenot dot com.

Got to go, this is a really good book.

ps; Richard Phillips was born in Roswell, has a master's in physics and lives in Phoenix.

He also finished his thesis research at the Los Alamos National Lab performing classified research at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in CA.

Very good book, a page turner.............adieu for now. :)
 

Ottershrew

Jedi Master
Another good SF writer (imo) is Brian Aldiss, who's pretty old now, but still bringing out new and thoughtful works. Here are some of my favourites:

"Hothouse" came out in 1962, so it's not a new title, but it came out in Penguin Modern Classics recently. It's quite nightmarish, because it portrays humans in the distant future as essentially the preyed-upon, rather than the apex predator. Oh, wait - that's how things are now ...

Wikipedia: Hothouse (novel) said:
"Hothouse" is a 1962 award-winning fantasy/science fiction novel by British author Brian Aldiss, composed of 5 novelettes that were originally serialized in a magazine. In the US, an abridged version was published as "The Long Afternoon of Earth"; the full version was not published there until 1976 (US paperback title "The Sun is Dying"). Five of the stories which make up the novel, which were published separately in "The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction" in 1961, were collectively awarded the 1962 Hugo Award for Best Short Fiction.

In the novel, the Earth, with one side constantly facing the Sun (larger and hotter than now), has become a a veritable hothouse, where plants have filled almost all ecological niches. According to Aldiss' account, the US publisher insisted on the name-change so the book wouldn't be put amongst the horticulture books in bookshops.

Set in a far future, the Earth has locked rotation with the Sun, and is attached to the now-more-distant Moon with cobwebs spun by enormous spider-like plants. The Sun has increased output and plants are engaged in a constant frenzy of growth and decay like a tropical forest enhanced a thousandfold. The plants have filled all the ecological niches on the land and in the air; of the animals only the descendants of four species of social insects remain (tigerflies (evolved from wasps), tree-bees, plant-ants and termights (from termites)), along with small groups of humans (a fifth of the size they are now); all other land and air animals have been driven to extinction by the vegetable kingdom. The humans live on the edge of extinction, within the canopy layer of a giant banyan tree that covers the day side of the earth.

"Frankenstein Unbound" is also terrific. It's a time travel story and a sequel to the 1818 novel. (There was a movie based on this book which was just terrible - I mean, just terrible - and didn't do the book justice at all.) The book is about dislocation: losing your points of reference, etc. At least, that's how it read to me - but then I read it when I was about 15. Again, it's not a new title, but hey ...

It came out in 1973, and it's about this guy who goes back in time from the 21st century to Switzerland in the early 19th century, where he meets Mary Shelley. But he also comes across the real Victor Frankenstein, who's created an artificial man and its bride. It's a real page-turner, this.

My total favourite, though, is "Cryptozoic!", also published as "An Age". This came out in 1967, and is a very funky time travel story:

Wikipedia: An Age said:
"An Age" (published in the U.S. as "Cryptozoic!") is a 1967 science fiction novel by Brian Aldiss. The book, set principally in 2093, combines the popular science fiction themes of time travel, totalitarian dystopia, and the untapped potential of the human mind. It was nominated for a Ditmar Award in 1969 in the "Best International Science Fiction of any length, or collection" category.

The future society described in the novel has developed a form of psychological time travel called "mind travel" by which, with the aid of the psychoactive drug CSD (no explanation of this acronym is given, though its mind altering effects are probably a reference to LSD), can travel in their minds to the distant past. While mind travelling, they are unable to interact with the world of the past, but they can sense and interact with other travellers from their own time. It has been discovered that the functioning of the human mind is influenced and limited by the "undermind", a mysterious force which aids in mind travel.

The story concerns Edward Bush, an artist searching for inspiration in the past. When Bush returns from a long stay in the Cryptozoic, he finds that his nation (presumably the United Kingdom) has been taken over by a totalitarian government. He is immediately drafted into the military and given the mission to kill the scientist Silverstone. As Bush mind-travels again to fulfil his mission, he learns of Silverstone's new philosophical and scientific discoveries. Bush and Silverstone meet and decide together to usher in a new era of humanity, one enlightened by the realization that time flows backward.

I went to an exhibition of Aldiss' art a few months ago. It was great, and thoroughly unpretentious - all this stuff, mostly collages, put on the wall of a cafe in Oxford. He comes across as a really thoughtful man - just completely unafraid to do his own thing. He writes like a serious novelist, whose real concern is with the human condition. I wonder if any serious novelist can write without moving into science fiction here and there? Frankly, I rather doubt it sometimes. When it comes to science fiction, Aldiss is definitely one of the all-time greats. I think he's got a big heart, and tons of sincerity.

I've put up a list of (imho) Aldiss' best titles on Amazon, where you can see the nice, pretty covers, and read a single-line review of each: Best of Brian Aldiss.
 

dreamer

Jedi Master
Charles Stross
Accelerando
Glasshouse

Paco Ahlgren
Discipline

Dan Simmons
Hyperion
Endymion

Greg Egan
Quarantine
Permutation City

Celia S. Friedman
The Coldfire trilogy
This Alien Shore

Ted Chiang
The Lifecycle of Software Objects

Hal Duncan
Vellum
Ink
 

Gimpy

The Living Force
For light, fun reads:

Jim Butcher: Harry Dresden Files

Kat Richardson: Greywalker series

Ilona Andrews: Kate Daniels series, The Edge series.


Someone's all ready mentioned Dan Simmons. I liked the Hyperion books. I just finished Ilium and Olympos, and they were serious slogs through so many different authors and plays it grew pretentious fast. It was almost like he had a bet as to how many famous literary figures/plays he could dump into one two volume set. :rolleyes:

What I love about the top three authors is their standing on the vampire genre: vampires are monsters, period, not misunderstood sexpots. The world building that's done is different and refreshing, too. But they are by no means serious reads, just lots of fun when a break is needed.
 

fabric

SuperModerator
Moderator
FOTCM Member
Not really a new writer but the Dark Tower series by Stephen King is one of my favourites.

Another writer I liked was David Eddings.... esp. the series the Belgariad and Malloreon (kinda of old too but really enjoyed them).
 
Hi all,

If we're talking about 'new' SF writers then in my opinion Iain M Banks simply has to be mentioned here. His books are that weird thing: very accessible but also gigantic in the width and the breadth of the concepts and worlds he seems to so effortlessly create. Also I think his SF books are especially significant within the context of this board as he seems to be unconsciously channeling the Cs and/or Ra, as a lot of the stuff discussed on this forum will be found in his books, in one shape or another.

I particularly recommend 'Consider Phlebas'. I've been a hardcore SF fan for more than 30 years now and thought I'd seen (or read) everything but 'Consider Phlebas' was a complete revelation and a journey of rediscovery. This book (at least for me) both encapsulated the past and present of SF but also took it one step further into something glorious. It's a rare book that I read with my mouth hanging open and this was one of them.

Also 'Consider Phlebas' is part of his 'Culture' series, all of which books are almost obligatory reading material for the discerning SF fan. FYI, the Culture is a galaxy-spanning, (benign) AI run, free-will based culture with an STO agenda well on it's way to becoming a social-memory complex, which inevitably collides with 'primitive' STS cultures, ostensibly keeping it's distance from them but at the same time discreetly meddling in their internal affairs through various 'agents' with the ultimate aim of breaking the STS control over them. This of course gives rise to many philosophical dilemmas, which are the main themes of the Culture series and which are so relevant to all the discussions on this board. These books are like manifestos on the ideas of society, religion, culture, war, the individual against the government, freedom and slavery and everything else that is relevant to us in the modern world. I actually sometimes think that Earth is actually a simplified metaphor for Banks' universe and not the other way round :-)

However, nothing I can write here will do any justice to Iain M Banks' immense operatic sweep and his astonishing ability to somehow connect the immensity and the complexity of the universe with one individual.

I assume that you understand from the tone of my post that I heartily recommend Iain M Banks :-)

PS: This guy also writes non-SF under the name 'Iain Banks' (without the 'M'). His latest book under the 'Iain Banks' moniker is called Transition and is actually quite scarily close to what the Cs tell us is going on: the Earth in balance between good/evil, an impending final battle between the forces trying to tip the final balance (not only in this dimensions but in all others as well), a dark and sinister organisation whose agenda was originally and STO one but is now firmly STS, agents and assasins working for this organisation who flit from dimension to dimension using the bodies of people as a portal, system-buster agents whose remit is to destroy this organisation from within and also how this organisation creates psychopaths and uses their power to try and crush the opposition. It's all there!
 
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