Author Topic: Rate the last book you just read  (Read 123567 times)

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Offline Noisy Rhysling

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Re: Rate the last book you just read
« Reply #1080 on: December 05, 2019, 04:16:17 PM »
The science was crowd sourced for the most part, but some things were necessary to the story. In the end he was far more accurate than 99% of "hard scifi" stories I've read.

Nothing is "necessary to the story" because the author makes up the story. If an author cannot think of a suitable story element, then s/he is not a good storyteller. And if The Martian is more accurate than 99% of hard sci-fi, that speaks to the dismal state of hard sci-fi. I've been roundly criticized for this before, but I'll say it again anyway: If you're going to write fantasy, call it fantasy.
Okay then.
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Offline Jeremy's Sea

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Re: Rate the last book you just read
« Reply #1081 on: December 05, 2019, 04:23:04 PM »
It's as if sci-fi doesn't exist, and we're left with fantasy and fiction. I don't understand why we can't have the understanding that sci-fi is imagination based and it will vary by degrees. Harry Potter is less fantasy than Lord of the Rings, but we don't have to call Harry Potter something else because they have cars and trains.

Anyway, I've never read Issac Asimov's long form fiction. That era of sc-fi kind of preceded me, and I was more of a fantasy DnD kid regardless. So I finally bought Foundation. It was not what I expected. It is definitely less about technology and rockets and more about human organization and politics.
The degree to which Azimov thought these things out is brilliant, and I'm not even focused on the "of its time" social aspects, of which there are many now, but I just don't find it that entertaining. I'm glad to have read it, but how is the rest of the series? Is it worth continuing on with or should I try something else of his?
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Online arthwollipot

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Re: Rate the last book you just read
« Reply #1082 on: December 05, 2019, 05:08:33 PM »
They are aimed at children. They should be considered on that basis. The Tales of Beetle the Bard also.

Beedle. And as I said, the demographic they are aimed at increases in age with each book. Deathly Hallows is aimed at 17-year olds.
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Offline Noisy Rhysling

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Re: Rate the last book you just read
« Reply #1083 on: December 05, 2019, 06:17:10 PM »
They are aimed at children. They should be considered on that basis. The Tales of Beetle the Bard also.

Beedle. And as I said, the demographic they are aimed at increases in age with each book. Deathly Hallows is aimed at 17-year olds.
Okay, children and seventeen year old adults.
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Online Tassie Dave

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Re: Rate the last book you just read
« Reply #1084 on: December 05, 2019, 06:31:17 PM »
They are aimed at children. They should be considered on that basis. The Tales of Beetle the Bard also.

Beedle. And as I said, the demographic they are aimed at increases in age with each book. Deathly Hallows is aimed at 17-year olds.

It is much more YA than Philosopher's Stone, which is a children's book.

I would gladly hand Philosopher's Stone to an 8 year old to read, but would wait until they were about 12 before handing them Deathly Hallows.


Online arthwollipot

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Re: Rate the last book you just read
« Reply #1085 on: December 05, 2019, 08:06:34 PM »
They are aimed at children. They should be considered on that basis. The Tales of Beetle the Bard also.

Beedle. And as I said, the demographic they are aimed at increases in age with each book. Deathly Hallows is aimed at 17-year olds.
Okay, children and seventeen year old adults.

Did you even read what I wrote? Each book is aimed at a different age.
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Offline daniel1948

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Re: Rate the last book you just read
« Reply #1086 on: December 05, 2019, 08:58:36 PM »
It's as if sci-fi doesn't exist, and we're left with fantasy and fiction.

Sci-fi does exist. There used to be a clearer understanding of the terms. Then while I wasn't paying attention (didn't have TV or go to movies for 35 years; didn't want the first and couldn't afford the second) a whole new genre of space fantasy masquerading as science fiction came along. Characters labeled as scientists using magic boxes. Transporter beams and warp drives are really just glorified magic wands but instead of magic words they used vaguely sciency sounding techno-babble. But because the authors believed in pseudoscience and claimed their magic boxes were built by scientists rather than by wizards, they called their fantasy "sci-fi."
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Re: Rate the last book you just read
« Reply #1087 on: December 05, 2019, 09:36:55 PM »
It's as if sci-fi doesn't exist, and we're left with fantasy and fiction.

Sci-fi does exist. There used to be a clearer understanding of the terms. Then while I wasn't paying attention (didn't have TV or go to movies for 35 years; didn't want the first and couldn't afford the second) a whole new genre of space fantasy masquerading as science fiction came along. Characters labeled as scientists using magic boxes. Transporter beams and warp drives are really just glorified magic wands but instead of magic words they used vaguely sciency sounding techno-babble. But because the authors believed in pseudoscience and claimed their magic boxes were built by scientists rather than by wizards, they called their fantasy "sci-fi."

It doesn't have to be hard science to be sci-fi and it never has been. Frankenstein & The Time Machine are classic sci-fi, but not at all possible scientifically.

You can't label only hard sci-fi as sci-fi. It is too restrictive a classification. Sci-Fi is all about the ideas using a science-ish  ;) background.

The Martian is sci-fi that takes a bit of artistic license with Martian meteorology and soil composition to tell a bloody good space exploration story.

Online arthwollipot

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Re: Rate the last book you just read
« Reply #1088 on: December 05, 2019, 09:49:28 PM »
Speaking of which, it's taken me a long time, but I'm now reading The Martian. And yes, it's every bit as good as everyone says it is.
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Offline Noisy Rhysling

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Re: Rate the last book you just read
« Reply #1089 on: December 06, 2019, 06:57:39 AM »
They are aimed at children. They should be considered on that basis. The Tales of Beetle the Bard also.

Beedle. And as I said, the demographic they are aimed at increases in age with each book. Deathly Hallows is aimed at 17-year olds.
Okay, children and seventeen year old adults.

Did you even read what I wrote? Each book is aimed at a different age.
I knew that before I started reading them. And seven books, starting when Harry is eleven. Do the math.
"Sunday's horoscope is note worthy because of its strange, sudden and wholly unpredictable and inexplicable occurrences, affecting all phases of life." Your Horoscope" L.A. Evening Herald Express, Sat, 12/06/41

Offline Jeremy's Sea

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Re: Rate the last book you just read
« Reply #1090 on: December 06, 2019, 02:17:10 PM »
It's as if sci-fi doesn't exist, and we're left with fantasy and fiction.

Sci-fi does exist. There used to be a clearer understanding of the terms. Then while I wasn't paying attention (didn't have TV or go to movies for 35 years; didn't want the first and couldn't afford the second) a whole new genre of space fantasy masquerading as science fiction came along. Characters labeled as scientists using magic boxes. Transporter beams and warp drives are really just glorified magic wands but instead of magic words they used vaguely sciency sounding techno-babble. But because the authors believed in pseudoscience and claimed their magic boxes were built by scientists rather than by wizards, they called their fantasy "sci-fi."
lol when was this golden age? Buck Rogers and Flash Gordon? HG Wells? I think it only entered the mainstream, it's never not been speculative or hand waving about tech that doens't exist and is highly improbablistic.
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Offline Swagomatic

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Re: Rate the last book you just read
« Reply #1091 on: December 06, 2019, 05:51:37 PM »
It's as if sci-fi doesn't exist, and we're left with fantasy and fiction.

Sci-fi does exist. There used to be a clearer understanding of the terms. Then while I wasn't paying attention (didn't have TV or go to movies for 35 years; didn't want the first and couldn't afford the second) a whole new genre of space fantasy masquerading as science fiction came along. Characters labeled as scientists using magic boxes. Transporter beams and warp drives are really just glorified magic wands but instead of magic words they used vaguely sciency sounding techno-babble. But because the authors believed in pseudoscience and claimed their magic boxes were built by scientists rather than by wizards, they called their fantasy "sci-fi."
lol when was this golden age? Buck Rogers and Flash Gordon? HG Wells? I think it only entered the mainstream, it's never not been speculative or hand waving about tech that doens't exist and is highly improbablistic.

An author writes fiction - it is up to the critics and fans to assign it to a genre.  The idea that every novel has to fit into a particular category is laughable.
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Re: Rate the last book you just read
« Reply #1092 on: December 06, 2019, 09:25:17 PM »
Isn't it at the core of science fiction in general to make a mixture of actual science, plausible science, and straight up fantasy to widely varying degrees?  As long as a work doesn't contain pseudo-science or play into harmful misconceptions the public already has, I don't have a problem with it in principle.  The worst the Martian had was the wind storm, which is physically impossible.  The rest of the problematic elements fall somewhere between technically possible but not likely to we just don't know enough to know for sure.  Remove those minor elements and you are still left with a book that makes science exciting and someone with as boring a title as "botanist," a hero worth rooting for whose survival isn't dependent on macho man characteristics, but slow, careful, and methodical problem-solving.  And don't forget the public ate it up.  If we get a Martian poop potato movement akin to the flat Earth movement then maybe I'll rethink things.

Offline Jeremy's Sea

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Re: Rate the last book you just read
« Reply #1093 on: December 06, 2019, 10:07:24 PM »
Isn't it at the core of science fiction in general to make a mixture of actual science, plausible science, and straight up fantasy to widely varying degrees?  As long as a work doesn't contain pseudo-science or play into harmful misconceptions the public already has, I don't have a problem with it in principle.  The worst the Martian had was the wind storm, which is physically impossible.  The rest of the problematic elements fall somewhere between technically possible but not likely to we just don't know enough to know for sure.  Remove those minor elements and you are still left with a book that makes science exciting and someone with as boring a title as "botanist," a hero worth rooting for whose survival isn't dependent on macho man characteristics, but slow, careful, and methodical problem-solving.  And don't forget the public ate it up.  If we get a Martian poop potato movement akin to the flat Earth movement then maybe I'll rethink things.
Yeah of course. This whole argument (for the fiftieth time) is just because Daniel takes a weirdly specific exception to sci-fi and never misses an opportunity to air his grievances.  :laugh: Then we all inevitably get sucked into trying to get him to see a reasonable point of view on it. None of us will ever evolve.  ;)
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Offline Noisy Rhysling

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Re: Rate the last book you just read
« Reply #1094 on: December 07, 2019, 05:10:10 AM »
Great is the power of ignore.
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