RSS iconTwitter iconFacebook icon

The Trek BBS title image

The Trek BBS statistics

Threads: 138,932
Posts: 5,389,798
Members: 24,720
Currently online: 513
Newest member: MrSpock

TrekToday headlines

New Trek-themed Bobble Heads
By: T'Bonz on Aug 21

IDW Publishing November Trek Comic
By: T'Bonz on Aug 20

Pegg/Wright Trilogy In The Works
By: T'Bonz on Aug 20

Star Trek: The Compendium Rebate Details
By: T'Bonz on Aug 20

Gold Key Archives Volume 2
By: T'Bonz on Aug 19

Takei Documentary Wins Award
By: T'Bonz on Aug 19

Cumberbatch To Voice Khan
By: T'Bonz on Aug 19

Shaun And Ed On Phineas and Ferb
By: T'Bonz on Aug 18

New Ships Coming From Official Starships Collection
By: T'Bonz on Aug 18

Trek Stars Take On Ice Bucket Challenge
By: T'Bonz on Aug 18


Welcome! The Trek BBS is the number one place to chat about Star Trek with like-minded fans. Please login to see our full range of forums as well as the ability to send and receive private messages, track your favourite topics and of course join in the discussions.

If you are a new visitor, join us for free. If you are an existing member please login below. Note: for members who joined under our old messageboard system, please login with your display name not your login name.


Go Back   The Trek BBS > Lounges & General Chat > Miscellaneous

Miscellaneous Discussion of non-Trek topics.

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old June 18 2013, 09:17 PM   #46
Emher
Admiral
 
Emher's Avatar
 
Location: Emher
Send a message via Windows Live Messenger to Emher Send a message via Yahoo to Emher
Re: Mandatory sci-fi

thestrangequark wrote: View Post
^It's just that Ender's Game is an exceptionally problematic book (mostly because it's a pretty shitty book), and so would take an exceptionally good teacher.
Finally someone agrees with me! Got pretty much forced by a friend in high school to read it and it just left feeling kinda...meh. The twist is sort of clever but...that's about what I can say about it. It left me kinda untouched.

My personal suggestion for mandatory sci-fi is Contact. Both the novel and the film.
__________________
"I am who I am. Someone has to be."-Brendan Gleeson as Reynald in Kingdom of Heaven. - Emher
Emher is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 19 2013, 12:48 AM   #47
Owain Taggart
Rear Admiral
 
Owain Taggart's Avatar
 
Location: Northern Ontario, Canada
Re: Mandatory sci-fi

Emher wrote: View Post
thestrangequark wrote: View Post
^It's just that Ender's Game is an exceptionally problematic book (mostly because it's a pretty shitty book), and so would take an exceptionally good teacher.
Finally someone agrees with me! Got pretty much forced by a friend in high school to read it and it just left feeling kinda...meh. The twist is sort of clever but...that's about what I can say about it. It left me kinda untouched.

My personal suggestion for mandatory sci-fi is Contact. Both the novel and the film.

Yeah, I read it after a number of recommendations and a lot of hype and I didn't really see anything special about it. I found it rather dryly written and the story not all that interesting to me. Left me feeling rather cold, in fact.
Owain Taggart is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 19 2013, 02:00 AM   #48
thestrangequark
Vice Admiral
 
thestrangequark's Avatar
 
Location: thestrangequark
Re: Mandatory sci-fi

^Aside from the technically poor writing, my problem was more the obvious Mary Sue revenge-fantasy aspect and the really fucking dubious morality. I'm not talking about the child soldiers, kids killing kids, and genocide either. I'm fine with that...those themes can make for really good, thought-provoking fiction, but Ender himself: What a stand-up kid! He'd never beat anyone to death unless he had to...

Rebecca Watson reviewed it, and she sums up my feelings about it rather well.
__________________
The Enterprise is my TARDIS.

View my art!
thestrangequark is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 19 2013, 02:12 AM   #49
RoJoHen
Awesome
 
RoJoHen's Avatar
 
Location: QC, IL, USA
Re: Mandatory sci-fi

thestrangequark wrote: View Post
^Aside from the technically poor writing, my problem was more the obvious Mary Sue revenge-fantasy aspect and the really fucking dubious morality. I'm not talking about the child soldiers, kids killing kids, and genocide either. I'm fine with that...those themes can make for really good, thought-provoking fiction, but Ender himself: What a stand-up kid! He'd never beat anyone to death unless he had to...

Rebecca Watson reviewed it, and she sums up my feelings about it rather well.
Ender is a monster. A kind monster, but a monster nonetheless. That's part of the reason I love the book AND the rest of the series.

I'm honestly not sure what it is about Ender's Game, but I have read every single book in that saga (which at this point is something like 10 or 12 books), and I love each and every one of them. It's the only book series that I continue to read, and I have been reading them since I was 14. There are still new books coming out now (though, admittedly, the current series is a prequel).
__________________
I am the Quintessential Admiral.
RoJoHen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 19 2013, 03:13 AM   #50
TorontoTrekker
Vice Admiral
 
TorontoTrekker's Avatar
 
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Re: Mandatory sci-fi

RoJoHen wrote: View Post
Unfortunately, my group got stuck reading Lake Wobegon Days...which might have been the single most boring book that I have ever attempted to read. I say "attempted," but I really didn't even try to finish it. It was awful.
You've obviously never read anything by Alice Munro or Margaret Laurence.

Sure-fire way to get onto a Canadian best-seller list: write a 300-page novel from the point of view of a 60ish woman, living in a small town on the Prairies, reminiscing about her life just before she dies.

If you can find a way to work Mennonites into it, so much the better.

Rincewiend wrote: View Post
And if i wanted to make kids read scifi or fantasy i would most likely give them Terry Pratchett and Douglas Adams to read...
I would encourage kids to read Pratchett and Adams too, but they wouldn't exactly serve the purpose of this undertaking (which is to interest kids in science). Unless you think there's a kid out there who's destined to invent the Infinite Improbability Drive.

Owain Taggart wrote: View Post
The one sci-fi book I remember having to read was The Chrysalids by John Wyndham, which I remember being a really convoluted book, with much I didn't understand.
I read that too - in grade nine, I think. I rather enjoyed it. We also read 1984 in grade twelve - which, for me, happened to actually be in 1984.

(Yes, I'm old. Hush. )

Owain Taggart wrote: View Post
Oh, I love Darwin's Radio! One of my favourite books
I quite enjoyed it too, though I remember being underwhelmed by its sequel, Darwin's Children. (They're both on the shelf across from me, along with several more of Greg Bear's novels.)

I think that if I had to pick some SF novels to assign to a high school class, I would choose:

- The Sheep Look Up by John Brunner
- Commitment Hour by James Alan Gardner
- The Doomsday Vault by Steven Harper
- Wake by Robert J. Sawyer
TorontoTrekker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 19 2013, 03:49 AM   #51
Miss Chicken
Little three legged cat with attitude
 
Miss Chicken's Avatar
 
Location: Howrah, Hobart, Tasmania
Re: Mandatory sci-fi

I can think of some sci-fi stories that I would have liked to be able to discuss in a class and which could lead to actual discussion of real science

1) The Mouse by Howard Fast (the atmosphere of Jupiter, problems with exploring an alien world)

2) Nightfall (how planets orbit suns, can solar systems with more than one sun exist)

There is another short story but I can't remember its name or its author. In this story explorers arrive on a planet to find the local inhabitants living a very primitive but idyllic lifestyle. At first the explorers think that the locals are backwards/low in intelligence until the explorers start to notice how quickly the locals learn things and adapt to the new technology the explorers introduce. The explorers than realise that the locals are far more intelligent than man and are a threat to humankind. Maybe someone can tell me the name of this story. (EDITED TO ADD - just did a search and discovered it is Turning Point by Poul Anderson)

I don't read much modern sci-fi but I am sure there must be many modern short stories that could lead to worthwhile discussion of science.

Last edited by Miss Chicken; June 19 2013 at 04:09 AM.
Miss Chicken is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 19 2013, 06:14 AM   #52
Darth Duck
Commodore
 
Darth Duck's Avatar
 
Location: The Maritimes
Re: Mandatory sci-fi

TorontoTrekker wrote: View Post
If you can find a way to work Mennonites into it, so much the better.
Miriam Toews is my CanLit goddess.
Darth Duck is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 19 2013, 07:13 PM   #53
Owain Taggart
Rear Admiral
 
Owain Taggart's Avatar
 
Location: Northern Ontario, Canada
Re: Mandatory sci-fi

TorontoTrekker wrote: View Post
Owain Taggart wrote: View Post
Oh, I love Darwin's Radio! One of my favourite books
I quite enjoyed it too, though I remember being underwhelmed by its sequel, Darwin's Children. (They're both on the shelf across from me, along with several more of Greg Bear's novels.)

Yeah, I liked the setup at the end of Darwin's Radio, but the followup was rather weak. Didn't feel like it had nearly taken advantage of the situation being proposed. There are loads of interesting books with interesting setups that I find disappointing due to execution. Oh and worst Greg Bear book I read? Moving Mars, because nothing is sillier than moving the planet to another galaxy. It was ridiculous and the pacing was terrible. Expected more out of him after Darwin's Radio.
Owain Taggart is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 19 2013, 09:11 PM   #54
Jadin
Lieutenant Junior Grade
 
Jadin's Avatar
 
Location: Berlin
Re: Mandatory sci-fi

I'm reading Stanislav Lem's The Star Diaries again. Yesterday it was the one with the time loop and the weekdays...
Jadin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 20 2013, 10:31 AM   #55
EmoBorg
Captain
 
EmoBorg's Avatar
 
Location: in the 10 dimensions of reality
Re: Mandatory sci-fi

In high school, for English literature class, i read sci-fi books like The Chrysalids and The White Mountains.
The Chrysalids was the book that opened my eyes to the dangers of religious fundamentalism.
__________________
Kaela Kimura,the cutest pop rock singer.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ySo7-zkprNo
EmoBorg is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 20 2013, 11:20 AM   #56
Rincewiend
Vice Admiral
 
Rincewiend's Avatar
 
Location: .eu / .nl
Re: Mandatory sci-fi

TorontoTrekker wrote: View Post
Rincewiend wrote: View Post
And if i wanted to make kids read scifi or fantasy i would most likely give them Terry Pratchett and Douglas Adams to read...
I would encourage kids to read Pratchett and Adams too, but they wouldn't exactly serve the purpose of this undertaking (which is to interest kids in science). Unless you think there's a kid out there who's destined to invent the Infinite Improbability Drive.
True, but they are great books to get kids interrested in reading scfi/fantasy.
I read for fun from an early age, like The Famous Five, translated in Dutch, same for Roald Dahl stories and a series about 10 year old Frisian twin boys and their motorized sloop...
Final year of highschool we had to read 11 books bij Dutch/Flemish writers for the Dutch course, there was a minimum of pages you had to read...
Most classmates went to the library with a calculator to make sure they pick books that added up to the amount of minimum pages or just a tad over, i on the other hand had picked a book that had about the amount of pages you had to read...
My classmates thought i was crazy, but it was a nice Detective book...
With the 10 other books i read triple the amount of required pages...
__________________
Don't trust atoms, they make up everything!
Rincewiend is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 20 2013, 07:57 PM   #57
E-DUB
Captain
 
Re: Mandatory sci-fi

Those who are critical of Asimov's Foundation series should remember that when it was written the field was rather young. Also that Asimov was rather young. Those who find it perhaps cliche-ridden should recognize it as the source of some of the cliches.

When science fiction writers have been asked about their favorite series work many, if not most cite "Foundation". The series needs no defense from me but since it's a work from the forties that remains in print to this day, well, that ought to speak for itself.

(Dismounts from soapbox.)

Those interested in more contemporary SF that gets both the technology and the people right are advised to pick up some Robert J. Sawyer.
E-DUB is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 20 2013, 08:03 PM   #58
Pavonis
Commodore
 
Re: Mandatory sci-fi

Owain Taggart wrote: View Post
Oh and worst Greg Bear book I read? Moving Mars, because nothing is sillier than moving the planet to another galaxy. It was ridiculous and the pacing was terrible. Expected more out of him after Darwin's Radio.
But Moving Mars came out before Darwin's Radio! Anyway, that was just the climax of the story. What did you think of the rest of Moving Mars?
Pavonis is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 20 2013, 08:34 PM   #59
Owain Taggart
Rear Admiral
 
Owain Taggart's Avatar
 
Location: Northern Ontario, Canada
Re: Mandatory sci-fi

Pavonis wrote: View Post
Owain Taggart wrote: View Post
Oh and worst Greg Bear book I read? Moving Mars, because nothing is sillier than moving the planet to another galaxy. It was ridiculous and the pacing was terrible. Expected more out of him after Darwin's Radio.
But Moving Mars came out before Darwin's Radio! Anyway, that was just the climax of the story. What did you think of the rest of Moving Mars?

I didn't think very much of it I thought the whole concept was rather silly and it took forever to get interesting.
Owain Taggart is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 21 2013, 07:33 AM   #60
TorontoTrekker
Vice Admiral
 
TorontoTrekker's Avatar
 
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Re: Mandatory sci-fi

E-DUB wrote: View Post
Those who are critical of Asimov's Foundation series should remember that when it was written the field was rather young. Also that Asimov was rather young. Those who find it perhaps cliche-ridden should recognize it as the source of some of the cliches.

When science fiction writers have been asked about their favorite series work many, if not most cite "Foundation". The series needs no defense from me but since it's a work from the forties that remains in print to this day, well, that ought to speak for itself.

(Dismounts from soapbox.)
*applause*

Those interested in more contemporary SF that gets both the technology and the people right are advised to pick up some Robert J. Sawyer.
Very true - but I only wanted to include one of Rob's books on my suggested list so that I didn't appear biased.

But Calculating God, Flash Forward, the Neanderthal Parallax series (Hominids, Humans and Hybrids) and the WWW series (Wake, Watch and Wonder) are some of the best books I've ever read. Rob's not the genre's best literary stylist, but he tells a damned good story and knows how to make you turn the pages (I read Triggers - his second-most recent novel - in about three days).
TorontoTrekker is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump



All times are GMT +1. The time now is 05:12 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.6
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
FireFox 2+ or Internet Explorer 7+ highly recommended.