February SFFKIT: Space Travel
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Welcome to the discussion thread for February's SFFKIT theme: space travel!
Here are a few ideas to get you started.
Exploration of our solar system
- 2001 by Arthur C. Clarke's
- Green Mars by Kim Stanley Robinson
- The Martian by Andy Weir
- The Sparrow by Mary Doria Russell
- The Forever War by Joe Haldeman
- A Fire Upon the Deep by Vernor Vinge
- Blindsight by Peter Watts
- The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams
- Ancillary Justice by Ann Leckie
- The Ship Who Sang by Anne McCaffrey
Space opera (which features a lot of interplanetary travel, even if space travel itself is not the primary theme)
- Sharon Lee and Steve Miller's Liaden Universe
- Lois McMaster Bujold's Vorkosigan series
- The Old Man's War series by John Scalzi
Please remember to update our Wiki page.
Enjoy your travels!
>7 christina_reads: I am quite excited about this book as I have seen a lot of good comments from LTers, even ones who don't read much sci-fi!
>4 Kristelh: there are a lot of them!
I've a stack of newly-acquired SciFi, will have to go through to see what fits. :)
Great suggestions so far! I'm also intrigued by The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet. I'll be interested in seeing the reviews here.
I'm thinking of A Princess of Mars by Edgar Rice Burroughs. Or some Bujold.
I'm going to reread Out of the Silent Planet, the first book in Lewis' space trilogy.
Dang! I have the first three books of the Old Man's War series, but I had NOT selected this series as one of the 17 I would make progress on this year!
So, looking for advice, do you think Foundation might fit?
Worst case scenario is that I add another series...
>17 LisaMorr: I'd read Foundation a long time ago ... too long to remember if it has any space travel in it. However, these challenges are very flexible, so feel free to read whatever you think will fit. Of course I don't want to dissuade you from your specific 2017 goals, but I did enjoy Scalzi's series very much. :)
>18 bluebird_: There are plenty of classics, including Ringworld, that I've not read either and that are on my want-to-read list. If you decide to start the Vorkosigan series, please consider visiting our Vorkosigan Saga thread:
Definitely space travel in Foundation, Lisa. Go for it. Keep in mind that the book was originally 8 short stories published in the pulps and don't expect too much character depth.
I am thinking of finally getting to Leviathan Wakes by James Corey, as it's been on my shelves for 5 years and is now the first of 7 books in the Expanse series. It has gotten uniformly high ratings for being good space opera. I have The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet on my Kindle, but given my emphasis on clearing my back acquisitions this year, think I'll prioritize the Corey.
>21 ronincats: Thanks! I read the Foundation trilogy ages ago, and I want to re-read it as well as the rest of the Foundation books.
>19 mathgirl40: Thanks for the link to the Vorkosigan Saga thread! Oh dear! My TBR pile is continuing to grow (no surprise there!). Looks like Shards of Honor is a good place to start--hopefully I'll get to it later this month.
>20 lavaturtle: Good choice!
>21 ronincats: I've had Leviathan Wakes on my TBR pile for ages too. Maybe I'll get to it this month.
>24 bluebird_: Shards of Honor is an excellent place to start with the Vorkosigan series, though there are other possible entry points.
I've started listening to the audiobook version of The Restaurant at the End of the Universe, narrated by Martin Freeman.
I read The Long Dark Tea-Time of the Soul by Douglas Adams. Such fun, but was hoping there would be a space ship or something but they only flew around with Thor's hammer through parallel universes so probably doesn't fit. Now on to Barrayar (Vorkosigan Saga, #7) which I hope has space travel. (the cover has a space ship0.
Hmmm. It's looking like most of Pebble in the Sky takes place on Earth as a small, unimportant part of the Galactic Empire. I had this vague idea it was set in the Asteroid Belt. Never mind.
I'm about 2/3s of the way through Hidden Empire by Kevin J. Anderson. Enjoying it very much.
I absolutely loved The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet by Becky Chambers!
>34 DeltaQueen50: Good to hear! I'm reading it now, and it hasn't totally grabbed me yet, but I'm only a short way into it.
I read Barrayar by Lois McMaster Bujold because it was tagged Space Travel but really there wasn't any space travel that occurred at the time of the story. Space travel did occur and at one point there is mention of space travel but the only traveling occurring was in light air transport. I won't put it in the wiki but it is very uncertain that I will get another read before end of month. Very good book by the way that I probably will use for the medical Cat.
>26 fuzzi: That's one of the few Heinleins I've not read yet. I'll be interested in hearing what you think of it.
>27 Kristelh: I too found that the Douglas Adams I'd just finished, The Restaurant at the End of the Universe, had more time travel than space travel but I'll probably count it anyhow.
>28 LisaMorr: >32 roundballnz: I'll have to try Peter F. Hamilton sometime. I do like space opera.
>31 Robertgreaves: I can understand why you had thought a book in a series called "Galactic Empire" would have space travel!
>33 majkia: I'm glad you're enjoying Hidden Empire. I've heard mixed reviews of Kevin J. Anderson's work, but I'm hoping he's better than these imply, as I have a couple of his books on my shelves to read.
>37 Kristelh: Too bad there wasn't much space travel in Barrayar, but I agree that it's a terrific novel and well worth reading.
I just finished a recently published novella by Alistair Reynolds, The Iron Tactician, which I enjoyed very much. This one definitely has space travel and even features a sentient spaceship.
Please remember to update our Wiki page. By the way, there's no rule about how much space travel is required to add a book to the Wiki. If you think it fits the theme in any way, please go ahead and add it.
I am planning to start black holes and baby universes by Stephen Hawking . Anyone here who had already read it??
>38 mathgirl40: I'm liking Pandora's Star, but it was a little slow getting going - there are so many characters and it took a while for the different plot lines to start to come together (and they still all haven't yet of course). The paperback I'm reading is 988 pages long with pretty small print...so I'm glad it's pulled me in a bit more, and hopefully I'll finish it soon!
I can't believe I don't have any space travel (fiction) in my HS library! Luckily, however, tor.com had a wonderful short story in this week's newsletter called Extracurricular Activities by Yoon Ha Lee. A fun romp about breaking a spy out from a space station.
If you are not already, I highly recommend signing up for Tor's newsletter. It's geeky fun!
Finished Starflight, which seemed sort of stuck between YA and Adult. I think it suffered from, from being a YA book, because I think the characters would have been more believable (and the plot, too) if they'd been in their 20s, and if the book as a whole had had more depth. I love YA lit., but this one just needed more; it felt like all of the depth was on the characters' psychology, with no depth/focus left over for the world, the plot, or non-main-character details. In any case, onward...
Count me as a fan of The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet by Becky Chambers
I have read Agent of Change, my first experience of the Liaden series -- really fun! I look forward to reading more :)
While Leviathan Wakes is still on my nightstand and a priority for this year, I decided I needed something shorter and faster-reading for this month's challenge and so have just started reading The long way to a small, angry planet, which I picked up as a Kindle special on Halloween last year.
>49 leslie.98: I'm a big fan of the Liaden series! We had a thread going introducing a number of people to it in 2015, here:
I always recommend starting with Agent of Change. Love those turtles!!
>39 Medialaze: Haven't read this one yet, but I have read A Brief History of Time. How accessible is Black Holes and Baby Universes?
>41 fuzzi: Thanks for the review. I find Heinlein hit-or-miss, but I will probably get around to reading this one day.
>44 LisaMorr: >45 majkia: Thanks for the recommendations. I'd like to read this series, but the length of the books is rather intimidating. I'm already in the midst of some series with very long books, such as the Wheel of Time, and I despair that I'll never finish them in this lifetime!
>46 mamzel: I've not read anything by Yoon Ha Lee, but several people have recommended Ninefox Gambit to me. I'll keep this story in mind too.
>47 whitewavedarling: I love YA too but don't usually find too much science-fiction in this genre. There's a lot of fantasy and dystopian literature, but not many space-travel books. Too bad this one fell a bit short of the mark.
>48 luvamystery65: I've read a good number of books from the Liaden series and have enjoyed all of them. My favourites so far are the Theo Waitley books.
>50 ronincats: I didn't get around to Leviathan Wakes either this month. I too love the Clutch Turtles in the Liaden series!
I don't know if I will finish this by the end of the month, but I've started Old Man's War by John Scalzi.
I've read A Princess of Mars by Edgar Rice Burroughs. Not much space travel really, except that somehow John Carter transfers from Earth to Mars and back in the blink of an eye. A fun piece of pulp.
Finished Behind the throne by K.B. Wagers. Exciting and satisfying space opera.
I read The long way to a small, angry planet which is absolutely fabulous.
AND in under the wire for this month,
Book #32 The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet by Becky Chambers (467 pp.)
And this book certainly qualifies for the SFFKIT February Category Challenge: Space Flight. Lots of people have loved this book and I can certainly see why. Not a fast-paced action adventure as some science fiction is, this uses the structure of a spaceship voyage during a full year in real time in space to allow us to learn about and identify with a diverse crew of characters and their universe, so that when push does come to shove, we are deeply invested. Looking forward to the next book.
I made it under the wire as well. The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet. I'm also looking forward to the next in the series.
Yippee! Good job, all!
On to March... http://www.librarything.com/topic/250097#5954482
I finished Pandora's Star on Monday, an epic alien invasion story. Worm-holes are used for travel between planets, but when an anomaly at the far reaches of the known universe is observed by an astronomer, the quickest way to get there and check it out is by developing and building a new kind of starship.It was a bit of a slow starter because there were sooooo many characters to follow, but it ratcheted up to a rip-roaring finale!
>57 MissWatson: >59 ronincats: >60 dallenbaugh: >61 majkia: Wow, this sounds like the must-read SFF book this year! Now I'm wondering if I'm the only one who hasn't read it yet. :)
>58 leslie.98: I've read a number of books in the Liaden series and I've enjoyed all of them. I don't think the series is as good as the Vorkosigan series (to be fair, very few writers are as good as multiple-Hugo-winner Bujold), but the books are very entertaining.
>63 LisaMorr: Thanks for the review!
February is now over, but feel free to add more thoughts to this thread if you are still working on your space-travel books. Don't forget to update our Wiki page:
Now I'll wander over to the March thread as >62 fuzzi: suggests ....
>66 dallenbaugh: Thanks for that information. I've funded some SFF anthologies on Kickstarter myself, so it's nice to know this model does work for some authors!
I finished Shards of Honor last weekend. Thanks for the recommendation. I really enjoyed this and will most certainly read more of the Vorkosigan series.
>73 bluebird_: I should mention that there are some spoilers in Gentleman Jole and the Red Queen. Since it takes place in Cordelia's later years, there are references to events that happen in the other books. If you want to read Miles's story without knowing about the major life events that happen to him, then I suggest you read this book after reading the Miles books.
>74 mathgirl40: thanks for the suggestion. I try to read books in chronological order, as I don't like spoilers.
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