Review What is the single best science fiction novel of all time?


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Dioltach

Legend
This one should make people think a bit more than "fantasy novels" or "sci-fi movies".

I used to read a lot of sci-fi back in the 1980s, but I can't seem to remember many that aren't series or novelisations of movies. I enjoyed Jack Vance's "Planet of Adventure" and "Demon Princes", and still do - I recently listened to them on audiobook. Some of Heinlein's stuff was good, particularly the early books before he started to get too serious ("Space Cadet" and "Tunnel in the Sky" were among my favourites). I absolutely loved Harry Harrison, particularly "The Stainless Steel Rat" series and "Deathworld" series. But they function best as series, not stand-alones.

So I'm going to kick off by casting my vote for Harry Harrison's "The Technicolor Time Machine": a movie studio in financial trouble uses a time machine to cut on the costs of making a movie. Why built Viking ships, after all, if they're already there, complete with crew?

(OK, so maybe it isn't the best sci-fi novel of all time, but it's still a great read.)
 







MarkB

Legend
I don't know about greatest, but Rendezvous With Rama always sticks in my mind for its very evocative portrayal of an alien artifact and environment. It's one of few stories that was able to evoke a strong enough image in my mind to cause simultaneous feelings of vertigo and agoraphobia purely from what it conjured in my imagination.
 

Cadence

Legend
Supporter
Glen Cook's "Passage at Arms" is a personal favorite. Edit: But I forgot to ask a genre question about another one that is a masterpiece, and do so a couple pages ahead.
 
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