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Masterpieces: The Best Science Fiction of…

Masterpieces: The Best Science Fiction of the Century

by Orson Scott Card (Editor)

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Showing 5 of 5
The Golden Age

Call Me Joe, Anderson - 5/5 - Previously read. Brilliant precursor to James Cameron's Avatar.

"All You Zombies--", Heinlein - 1/5 - Time-travelling mystery, too much effort, didn't get it, not my cup of tea.
  jigarpatel | Apr 14, 2019 |
Great selection of stories. Sandkings (George R. R. Martin) and Tunesmith (Lloyd Biggle Jr) are not to be missed. ( )
  OzzieJello | Mar 26, 2010 |
Stories are clustered into 3 chronological eras: "The Golden Age", "The New Wave,:" and "The Media Generation." What strikes me is the parallel evolution and devolution of the SF tale; the early stories are jam packed with ideas (is there a story so full of invention as Heinlein's "All You Zombies"?), sometimes at the expense of literary craftsmanship. The later tales are better told, but have so much less to tell, often being the vessels of a single idea, or a fragment of an idea. ( )
1 vote jburlinson | Jul 26, 2009 |
The stories in this collection are very uneven. I really liked "Sandkings," for example, but other stories are dated at best and unreadable at worst. ( )
  fish1861 | Sep 3, 2007 |
I'm not sure this anthology quite lives up to its title, but it's worth buying for Ellison's "'Repent, Harlequin!' Said the Ticktockman" alone. In fact, that's exactly why I bought it, since I have many of the other stories elsewhere... ( )
  szarka | Mar 17, 2007 |
Showing 5 of 5
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Making a list of the best science fiction stories of the century is the same as making a list of the best science fiction stories of the millennium.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0441011330, Paperback)

Masterpieces: The Best Science Fiction of the Century may not include every reader's choices for the top science fiction of the 20th century, but it lives up to its title. Editor Orson Scott Card has assembled 27 standout stories by the biggest names and best writers in the genre. Not surprisingly, most of these stories have been anthologized or collected elsewhere, and some (like Arthur C. Clarke's "Nine Billion Names of God," Harlan Ellison's "'Repent, Harlequin!' Said the Ticktockman," and Robert A. Heinlein's "All You Zombies--") have been reprinted innumerable times. In addition, Card has previously placed some of these selections in his retrospective 1980s anthology Future on Ice.

While some stories in Masterpieces lack fine prose and well-rounded characters, they are solid and engrossing entertainments. Other selections combine literary and science fiction virtues to produce a superior blend, and some of these stories--"Bears Discover Fire" by Terry Bisson, "Snow" by John Crowley, "'Repent, Harlequin!' Said the Ticktockman" by Harlan Ellison, "Face Value" by Karen Joy Fowler, "Tourists" by Lisa Goldstein, and "The Ones Who Walked Away from Omelas" by Ursula K. Le Guin--are art.

Masterpieces isn't an anthology for the well-read fan. However, it is a great book for the new or intermediate science fiction reader. --Cynthia Ward

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:02:49 -0400)

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