Top 100 Sci Fi & Fantasy Books

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It dawned on me that for someone who likes sci-fi and fantasy, I should read some more of it.  Below is NPR's audience suggested Top 100 from 2011.

I've read the books with comments.  Movies don't count, I decided.

1. The Lord of the Rings - JRR Tolkien
    Read it twice as a teen, once after the movies. I won't dispute the placement due to its legacy.  B+

2. The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams
    The movie was better, I think.  B+

3. Ender's Game - Orson Scott Card
    Thoroughly excellent.  A

4. The Dune Chronicles - Frank Herbert
    The first three were excellent to very good, then dropped off a cliff.  For Dune, A.

5. A Song of Ice and Fire Series - George R.R. Martin

6. 1984 - George Orwell

7. Farenheit 451 - Ray Bradbury
    Good book, probably ready for a theatrical update in current social issues. B+

8. The Foundation Trilogy - Isaac Asimov
    Enjoyable, and not as inaccessible as the Asimov name had me expect.  B-

9. Brave New World - Aldous Huxley

10. American Gods - Neil Gaiman
     Revered by so many... I was disappointed with this.  Good, but I didn't really care what happened.      B

11. The Princess Bride - William Goldman

12. The Wheel of Time Series - Robert Jordan
      What started off as possibly the best fantasy series concluded as the longest and wordiest. Sad.           B-

13. Animal Farm - George Orwell

14. Neuromancer - William Gibson

15. Watchmen - Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons

16. I, Robot - Isaac Asimov

17. Stranger in a Strange Land - Robert A. Heinlein
     Thoroughly stimulating from beginning to end.  A+

18. The Name of the Wind - Patrick Rothfuss
     My vote for the best fantasy book ever, and hopefully series when it's concluded.  A+

19. Slaughterhouse Five - Kurt Vonnegut

20. Frankenstein - Mary Shelley

21. Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep - Philip K. Dick

22. The Handmaid's Tale - Margaret Atwood

23.  The Dark Tower Series - Stephen King

24. 2001: A Space Odyssey - Arthur C. Clarke
     Read it way back when.  Don't need to again.  B

25. The Stand - Stephen King
      Lengthy but enjoyable.  A-

26. Snow Crash - Neal Stephenson
     Really good.  A-

27. The Martian Chronicles - Ray Bradbury

28. Cat's Cradle - Kurt Vonnegut

29. The Sandman Series - Neil Gaiman

30. A Clockwork Orange - Anthony Burgess

31. Starship Troopers - Robert A. Heinlein
      Another stimulating observational story on morals.  Not a whole lot of fighting. B+

32. Watership Down - Richard Adams
      Read it years ago.  Don't remember a bit of it.  C

33. Dragonflight - Anne McCaffrey
      Read it years ago. Don't remember a bit of it.  B-

34. The Moon is a Harsh Mistress - Robert A. Heinlein

35. A Canticle for Leibowitz - Walter M. Miller, Jr.
      Ho-hum. Before it's time, I guess, for post nuclear holocaust.  C

36. The Time Machine - H.G. Wells
      Ahead of its time.   C

37. 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea - Jules Verne
      As above.  C

38. Flowers for Algernon - Daniel Keyes

39. The War of the Worlds - H.G. Wells
      Good in book, radio, movie, or album.  B

40. The Amber Chronicles - Roger Zelazny

41. The Belgariad - David Eddings

42. The Mists of Avalon - Marion Zimmer Bradley

43. Mistborn Trilogy - Brandon Sanderson
      Excellent, entertaining, and a pleasure to read.  A-

44. Ringworld - Larry Niven
      Good, not great.  Sequels were as good.  B

45. The Left Hand of Darkness - Ursula K. Le Guin

46. The Silmarillion - J.R.R. Tolkein
      A long snore followed by a readable section.  C-

47. The Once and Future King - T.H. White
      A chore, and I was better read for it.  Past tense.  C

48. Neverwhere - Neil Gaiman
      Who says the sewers of London can't be imaginative and enjoyable?  B

49. Childhood's End - Arthur C. Clarke

50. Contact - Carl Sagan

51. Hyperion - Dan Simmons

52. Stardust - Neil Gaiman

53. Cryptonomicron - Neal Stephenson
      Not sure that I would call this sci-fi or fantasy, but a good read.  B+

54. World War Z - Max Brooks

55. The Last Unicorn - Peter S. Beagle

56. The Forever War - Joe Haldeman

57. Small Gods - Terry Pratchett
      Ah, British humor, with an axe to grind against religion.  B-

58. The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant the Unbeliever - Stephen R. Donaldson

59. The Vorsigan Saga - Lois McMaster Bujold
      Very entertaining lead character and series.  B+

60. Going Postal - Terry Pratchett
      British humor well executed in a fictional world.  B+

61. The Mote in God's Eye - Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle
      Enjoyable book.  A-

62. The Sword of Truth Series - Terry Goodkind

63. The Road - Cormac McCarthy

64. Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell - Susanna Clarke
      You either like the writing style or you don't.  Lengthy, but enjoyable.  B+

65. I Am Legend - Richard Matheson

66. The Riftwar Saga - Raymond E. Feist

67. Sword of Shannara Trilogy - Terry Brooks
      I read this Tolkien ripoff long ago and enjoyed it.  I read the first book again recently only to find       it very poorly written.  D

68. Conan the Barbarian Series - Robert E. Howard and Mark Schultz

69. Farseer Trilogy - Robin Hood

70. The Time Travelers's Wife - Audrey Niffenegger

71. The Way of Kings - Brandon Sanderson
      Very possibly the next best fantasy series ever.  A

72. Journey to the Center of the Earth - Jules Verne

73. The Legend of Drizzt Series - R.A. Salvatore

74. Old Man's War - John Scalzi
      Thoroughly excellent, followed by a good sequel then another excellent one.  A

75. The Diamond Age - Neal Stephenson

76. Rendezvous with Rama - Arthur C. Clarke

77. Kushiel's Legacy Series - Jacqueline Carey

78. The Dispossessed - Ursula K. Le Guin

79. Something Wicked This Way Comes - Ray Bradbury
      Good in every creepy way possible.  A+

80. Wicked - Gregory Maguire

81. The Malazon Book of the Fallen Series - Steven Erikson

82. The Eyre Affair - Jasper Fforde

83. The Culture Series - Iain Banks

84. The Crystal Cave - Mary Stewart

85. Anathem - Neal Stephenson

86. The Codex Alera Series - Jim Butcher

87. The Book of the New Sun - Gene Wolfe

88. The Thrawn Trilogy - Timothy Zawn
      Is one Star Wars trilogy better than another by the same author? Decent.  C

89. The Outlander Series - Diana Gabaldon

90. The Elric Saga - Michael Moorcock

91. The Illustrated Man - Ray Bradbury

92. Sunshine - Robin McKinley

93. A Fire Upon the Deep - Vernor Vinge

94. The Caves of Steel - Isaac Asimov

95. The Mars Trilogy - Kim Stanley Robinson

96. Lucifer's Hammer - Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle
      The day after a comet strikes the Earth... don't be there. Science and fiction.  B+

97. Doomsday Book - Connie Willis

98. Perdido Street Station - China Mieville

99. The Xanth Series - Piers Anthony

100. The Space Trilogy - C.S. Lewis








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