When it comes to top 10 lists, I normally take them with a grain of salt. Especially when it’s regarding subjective matter. And fiction is certainly that. It’s very subjective. So much so that although I love receiving book reviews for my own novels, I personally do not review other authors’ books. Because it’s too subjective. What I like or dislike might not align with the overall impression of the piece. Obviously, there are exceptions to every rule. If I’m totally blown away by a story, I may share my thoughts. If it’s not good, I’ll keep that to myself and move on. I know how hard a bad review hits the creative ego. It sucks.
I do leave other reviews, both bad and good, on products that deserve it. As an example, I’m contemplating leaving a bad review for a toilet plunger I bought about six months ago. It just doesn’t work. There’s no opinion about it. The little rubber flip-flops inside out and it doesn’t do a thing. Then when you go to reach in to try to correct it, the rubber finally flops back the other way, causing a huge splash of toilet water to spray all over … including myself. That deserves a bad review. But I digress.
That brings me to this list. It’s Discover Sci-Fi’s list of Top 10 Science Fiction novels as voted on by their Facebook Fans. To my surprise, I’ve read six of these ten novels. A few of them I’ve read multiple times. And for what it’s worth, I agree with their placement on this list wholeheartedly.
The book they have slotted at number one, Foundation, is on my bookshelf. I actually have an early edition of it in hardback and it is certainly on my to-be-read list. When I get time to, that is. Dune is also on my to-be-read list, but I’m embarrassed to admit that I’ve never picked up a copy. With the whole remaking of the Dune movie in the works, I actually might give that one a read-through before I read Foundation just to be ahead of the game when it hits theaters. I always like to read the book before watching the movie rendition.
The other two, Dragonflight, and 1984, they’re not necessarily on my radar but they’re not off of it either. 1984 is a novel that should be read, I think, but more for its political and social aspects. I actually never considered it to be a science fiction book whatsoever. And Anne’s book, quite frankly I’ve never heard of it. I’m not sure if I should be embarrassed by that fact or not.
Regardless, I approve of this list. And of the six books that I’ve read, I’d probably rearrange them a little bit. I don’t believe I would’ve ranked Hitchhikers Guide quite so high. It was worthy of a read, even twice, but I don’t believe it should be above Enders Game. I think Ringworld should be higher than that for sure … and possibly even Starship Troopers, which I read before the movie was made and I love the movie just as much. It’s just as good/terrible as it should be. The other two Heinlein novels, Stranger in a Strange Land and The Moon is a Harsh Mistress are excellent as well.
If you haven’t read them, at least check some of them out. They’re all good reads.