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Old 12-31-2012, 01:03 AM   #15016
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^^^
Such fickle fans. Let a mere 70 years go past and they abandon you like yesterday's socks.

Seriously though, all science fiction is a bit like that. Some stands up better than others, of course, I still like most of my Asimov collection, but much of my Clarke collection gathers dust, mostly it's the short stories that still seem to work. Jules Verne remains an amusing curiosity, but not what he must have been, though H.G. Wells continues to enthrall ... isn't that curious.

But I do think that with most of them, if you sit down with it in the right frame of mind, you can still capture some of the magic that was.
It's interesting which ones stand the test and which don't. Some of the Heinlein juvenilia actually do quite well (Moon, for example). Others just don't work for me any more. Foundation was one I expected to enjoy, but found was just too simplistically written to still be interesting. The Amber series is another that really hasn't worked for me this time around.
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Old 12-31-2012, 01:51 AM   #15017
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It's interesting which ones stand the test and which don't. Some of the Heinlein juvenilia actually do quite well (Moon, for example). Others just don't work for me any more. Foundation was one I expected to enjoy, but found was just too simplistically written to still be interesting. The Amber series is another that really hasn't worked for me this time around.
I agree with you about Heinlein. Some are still very readable and some have some technology that jars me out of the story. But, I can't work out what juvenile you are referring to as "Moon". "The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress" is what came to mind, but it is not a juvenile.

As to the Foundation series, I agree with you. I read them when I was young and enjoyed them. When I last reread them, the basic ideas were still interesting, but the characters are one dimensional and overall it didn't keep my attention.

The Amber series is another that I enjoyed, but could never really see what the fuss was about. Well written and all that, but it just didn't get me.

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Old 12-31-2012, 05:54 AM   #15018
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Which was great fun in a mil-sf sort of way.

Then I started on The Collective by Kerry Downing which I bought back in 2005. I think I must have read it back then, although I have no memory of the ending. But I'm going to abandon it this time, as the characters are just not interesting or believable.

Next up: Jade Darcy and the Affair of Honor by Stephen Goldin and Mary Mason. This is a young-adult SF I think. Let's see if I like it.
Umm.. no. Not young-adult at all. But instead a really rather good SF story about a flawed hero. I liked it a lot.

Next up: Rewind by Terry England. I'm about half way through, and it's interesting, but I'm a little bit unconvinced by the politics and legal happenings. The religious reactions seem spot-on.
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Old 12-31-2012, 06:03 AM   #15019
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I agree with you about Heinlein. Some are still very readable and some have some technology that jars me out of the story. But, I can't work out what juvenile you are referring to as "Moon". "The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress" is what came to mind, but it is not a juvenile.
There's also the novella "Destination Moon" (a story written from the screenplay of his 1950 film of the same name), but that's not a juvenile either.
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Old 12-31-2012, 10:36 AM   #15020
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Now, back to December's book club read - Year of Wonders by Geraldine Brooks.
I liked this one, but not as much as I expected to. This was my last book for 2012.

It's been a great year of reading for me. My insistence of having a classics challenge has meant reading some great works that I might not have otherwise read.
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Old 12-31-2012, 10:59 AM   #15021
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I liked this one, but not as much as I expected to. This was my last book for 2012.

It's been a great year of reading for me. My insistence of having a classics challenge has meant reading some great works that I might not have otherwise read.
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Old 12-31-2012, 01:15 PM   #15022
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There's also the novella "Destination Moon" (a story written from the screenplay of his 1950 film of the same name), but that's not a juvenile either.
I was referring to The Moon is a Harsh Mistress. If y'all say it isn't YA, I will bow to group opinion, but somehow I always thought of it that way. Probably because I first read it when I was 12 or 13. But then I read a LOT of SF when I was about that age -- I was (and am) a voracious reader and read everything that came my way. Now I'm a bit more selective, but still read ~160 books this last year. In any case, I re-read Moon recently, and quite enjoyed it.
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Old 12-31-2012, 04:19 PM   #15023
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Next up: Rewind by Terry England. I'm about half way through, and it's interesting, but I'm a little bit unconvinced by the politics and legal happenings. The religious reactions seem spot-on.
The second half was a bit better. Overall, an enjoyable but flawed story.

I think I'll pick my next book to read when it's 2013.
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Old 12-31-2012, 09:56 PM   #15024
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I was referring to The Moon is a Harsh Mistress. If y'all say it isn't YA, I will bow to group opinion, but somehow I always thought of it that way. Probably because I first read it when I was 12 or 13. But then I read a LOT of SF when I was about that age -- I was (and am) a voracious reader and read everything that came my way. Now I'm a bit more selective, but still read ~160 books this last year. In any case, I re-read Moon recently, and quite enjoyed it.
So for you, it was a juvenile. I found it a bit late, while I was at Uni I think. I've read it a few times and I think it still holds up.

I probably should state I am rereading "In the Ocean of the Night" by Gregory Benford. I can't decide if I will go straight on to the next in the series or find something different.

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Old 01-01-2013, 04:33 AM   #15025
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Right now reading Beowulf. Tricky English, especially when I just started but now I got used to it.
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Old 01-01-2013, 04:42 AM   #15026
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Just finished The EndOf Your Life Book Club by Will Schwalbe.

Thoroughly enjoyed it, a true story about a ladies journey with pancreatic cancer and the books that helped her on the journey.
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Old 01-01-2013, 06:03 AM   #15027
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I was referring to The Moon is a Harsh Mistress. If y'all say it isn't YA, I will bow to group opinion, but somehow I always thought of it that way.
The Heinlein "Juveniles" are generally regarded as being the following 12 books:
  • Rocket Ship Galileo, 1947
  • Space Cadet, 1948
  • Red Planet, 1949
  • Between Planets, 1951
  • The Rolling Stones aka Space Family Stone, 1952
  • Farmer in the Sky, 1953
  • Starman Jones, 1953
  • The Star Beast, 1954
  • Tunnel in the Sky, 1955
  • Time for the Stars, 1956
  • Citizen of the Galaxy, 1957
  • Have Space Suit—Will Travel, 1958

"Starship Troopers" (1959) is sometimes included in the list. "Podkayne of Mars" (1963) is often listed as a "juvenile" but Heinlein himself didn't consider it to be one.

Last edited by HarryT; 01-01-2013 at 06:16 AM. Reason: Typo
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Old 01-01-2013, 06:20 AM   #15028
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Yes. I have a Boxed Set collection of the paperbacks.

Many claim "Stranger..." was pretty juvenile.
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Old 01-01-2013, 06:45 AM   #15029
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Some would say all SF...

Seriously, though, there is a kind of family-friendliness in a lot of older SF & F which means it can easily be read by younger readers even if not specifically aimed at them. That's how most of us got into it, I suspect.

I read Moon is a Harsh Mistress maybe ten years ago, and didn't think much of it at all. I still have two Heinleins to read this year to complete my Hugo list, and based on past experience I think I will enjoy Double Star and struggle with Stranger in a Strange Land.
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Old 01-01-2013, 06:51 AM   #15030
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I read Moon is a Harsh Mistress maybe ten years ago, and didn't think much of it at all. I still have two Heinleins to read this year to complete my Hugo list, and based on past experience I think I will enjoy Double Star and struggle with Stranger in a Strange Land.
I really enjoy Heinlein's early work, but I find much of his later work (really from "Stranger in a Strange Land" onwards) to be virtually unreadable.
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