The Vampire Cameo…


I’ve written here before about my slow reassimilation into the world of science fiction writing. Strange that I was into the second hand section of the fine Chapters store on Parnell Street over the weekend looking and….. I was finding it hard to pick something, primarily because beyond a few famous names I have no idea what’s any good…


You lot.

Any suggestions? Beyond Clarke, Asimov, Heinlein, Dick, Adams… The usuals, what specific sci-fi books can you recommend for me?

25 thoughts on “The Vampire Cameo…

  1. Have you read the Red Dwarf books by Rob Grant and Doug Naylor? They’re quite well written. If you like Doug Adams, you should like them 🙂

  2. lol i was going to suggest the Red Dwarf too! Last Human is the only one i’ve been able to find over here in canuck-ville, but i loved the series immensely.

  3. Enders Game by Orson Scott Card , the sequels are okay but Enders Game as a stand alone book got me completely hooked on the science fiction genre.
    Then there’s all the Dune books by Frank Herbert.
    Snow Crash by Neal Stephenson , I’d recommend anything by him but his other stuff is strictly speaking not science fiction.
    There’s loads of others out there as well, but they are a good start.

  4. I’m an utter banksy fanboy. I’ve read everything (with and without the M) and I very highly recommend ‘Player of games’. Easily my favourite Sci novel. Only second the Wasp Factory in overall favourites.

  5. If you haven’t already read them try some of the classics (i.e. HG Wells, Jules Verne)

    Recently I picked up a copy of ‘War of the Worlds’ I realised that even though I knew the story I had never read the book, so I bought it and had quite the enjoyable read.

    I read ‘Accelerando’ by Charlie Stross and found it quite good.

    I also enjoy George RR Martin. He is mainly known for his fantasy stuff, but he has written a lot of excellent sci-fi also. I’d recommend buying his retrospective called ‘Dreamsongs'( I think it is published in two volumes if buying it in paperback) which contains absolutely tons of his sci-fi short stories

  6. Always liked Stephen Donaldson’s The Gap Series- an epic with 5 books but a good read. His Thomas Covenant series is good as well although that would be more fantasy than sci-fi.

  7. Don’t judge the Red Dwarf books by the series by the way and expect them to be exactly the same or tell exactly the same story. They’re not and they don’t. There’s much more intelligence, much more depth and dare I say it much more humour in the books.

  8. I’m with Niall and Donna. The Red Dwarf books are excellent. Very funny and very witty.

  9. “I read ‘Accelerando’ by Charlie Stross and found it quite good.”

    I’m reading that at the moment. Good stuff.

    Comics, not books, but Brian K Vaughan’s Y: The Last Man is a very good sci-fi story.

  10. Definitely agree on Iain Banks.

    A few more authors, hopefully Chapters would have books by two or three of them.

    Kage Baker – try
    “In the Garden of Iden”, the first of her “Company” novels (time travel)
    John Barnes – try
    “A Million Open Doors” which is the first of a short series.
    Lois McMaster Bujold – classy space opera, in a loosely tied series. (Also writes fantasy.)
    CJ Cherryh – a whole back catalogue of award winning stuff. Most of them fit into a common future history but are stand-alone in themselves. Try “Merchanter’s Luck” or “Rimrunners”, or for more recently published, “Hammerfall” (which does have a direct sequel).
    George Alec Effinger –
    try “A Fire in the Sun”
    Middle Eastern cyberpunk/noir
    Greg Egan is well thought of, if you like lots of hard science.
    Ursula K LeGuin – “The Left Hand of Darkness” and “The Dispossessed” are both classics.
    Ian McDonald – highly talented Belfast writer.
    Ken McLeod for a bit of socialism with your scifi, and plenty of plot. Try “The Star Fraction”.
    Richard Morgan – future thriller-type books, very popular. “Altered Carbon” is the first one.
    Linda Nagata – lots of interesting ideas well worked out(nanotechnology, life extension etc.) .
    Michael Marshall Smith – all standalones, his first novel “Only Forward” still my favourite. (Writes thrillers now without the Smith)
    Tim Powers – pretty much all good. More like fantasy than hard sf, generally set in the present day. Mostly stand alone though “Earthquake Weather” is a sequel so not a place to start.
    Alistair Reynolds – start with “Revolution Space”.
    Mary Doria Russell – “The Sparrow” – the Jesuits fund a space mission.
    Charlie Stross – Overflowing with energy and ideas about the future.
    Vernor Vinge – a modern master. Try “A Fire Upon the Deep”
    Connie Willis – mostly quirky with timetravel.

  11. I know you mentioned reading more comics a while ago Rick, I’m not sure if you are still interested in doing so. But if you are I second Paul’s suggestion of Brian K. Vaughan’s work. ‘Y: the last man’ is excellent but ‘Ex Machina’ would be more sci-fi

  12. “‘Y: the last man’ is excellent but ‘Ex Machina’ would be more sci-fi”

    I really like Ex Machina too, but I think Y is better to recommend as it’s a finished story. Ex Machina won’t be finished for another year or so at least.

  13. You missed out on a great book there – in the middle – Inherit The Stars, it’s the first part of a series, the first 3 of which are incredibly good. Like, we’re talking, blowing your mind kind of good.

  14. Yeah, Y being finished is a big advantage and I also personally prefer it to his other works (just edging out Runaways and Ex Machina)

  15. Late to this. I echo ‘Ender’s Game’, a must read, and will also suggest Spider Robinson. Obscure Canadian, very funny. The first few ‘Callahan’ books or my favourite, ‘Time Pressure’.

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