The top 12 sci-fi books of 19th/20th century




One response to “The top 12 sci-fi books of 19th/20th century

  1. Laurel L. Russwurm

    You’ve titled this “The top 12 sci-fi books of 19th/20th century”.

    A great or prescient SF idea can be written into a mediocre book. Just like any other books, good science fiction needs to be well written.

    So I read “top” as “best”, not first, not most prescient, but as a well written, good book that is still as readable now as then.

    Some of these books would go on my list, but…

    2001? I’m sorry, the only reason that Arthur C. Clarke even wrote it was to attempt to make sense of the movie. If you want a Clarke in this list you’d be better off going with “Against The Fall of Night” or maybe “Rendezvous with Rama”

    Likewise “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep” is only known in the mainstream thanks to the Harrison Ford movie “Bladerunner”. Although stylish, the movie wasn’t very substantial, although I think it was better written than the book. And sorry, I don’t think that Phillip K. actually wrote anything good enough to deserve to be on this list.

    The Time Machine? No. Although probably Welles most well known book, it was simplistic and lacking the maturity he brought to Shape of Things to Come.

    The Shape of Things to Come: Yes

    1984: Yes

    Foundation Trilogy: Yes

    Brave New World: Maybe

    Neuromancer: Maybe

    The others I have no idea about.

    Books that should have been included:

    Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes
    The Martian Chronicles by Ray Bradbury
    Ringworld by Larry Niven
    The Caves of Steel by Isaac Asimov
    Make Room, Make Room by Harry Harrison
    Enemy Mine by Barry B. Longyear
    Dying of The Light by George R.R. Martin
    The Ugly Little Boy by Isaac Asimov & Robert Silverberg

    And a couple of oldies but goodies:
    A Princess of Mars by Edgar Rice Burroughs
    A Journey to the Center of the Earth by Jules Verne

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