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Old 04-10-2011, 11:32 PM   #1
Dean M. Cole
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Thumbs up Great SF Saga

Just finished reading Peter F. Hamilton's Commonwealth Saga. It's a series of science fiction novels based on the British science fiction writer's previous novel, Misspent Youth.

While it takes some of the ideas forwarded in the earlier work a couple of hundred years into the future, the series stands on its own. Having not read Misspent Youth did not detract from my enjoyment of this very insightful and entertaining series.

Hamilton's ability to propagate ideas and technologies into the future and envision their ultimate outcome is unmatched in the genre.

It's a great read and a fun ride.

Dean M. Cole

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Old 04-11-2011, 01:37 AM   #2
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Baen recently started re-releasing works by an author in omnibus form that I had only slightly heard of, but never read, A. Bertram Chandler.

But really good stuff. Somewhat between Space Opera and serious SF and I guess even military fiction, since it's centered around the career of someone in the service.

http://www.webscription.net/p-1319-t...actic-rim.aspx

They seem to have a lot of his other works, but the omnibus releases seem to be coming 6 months part (there was one last month, and another one this summer)

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Old 04-11-2011, 12:46 PM   #3
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Those John Grimes stories, by A. Bertram Chandler, are a lot of fun. I recommend them highly for the SF buff. I read them when they were new and today some of the story lines might seem a bit dated. Still I think the stories will hold up well because much of the story is about the people with the technology as a background just to make it feel fun.

To me those Grimes stories are some very under appreciated SF works. I really enjoyed them as a teenager when I first read them.

I was excited when I learned Baen was releasing them as ebooks. I bought every one of them as they were released. Haven't yet read them again but want to set aside a month sometime soon for just that purpose.
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Old 04-11-2011, 12:50 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dean M. Cole View Post
Just finished reading Peter F. Hamilton's Commonwealth Saga. It's a series of science fiction novels based on the British science fiction writer's previous novel, Misspent Youth.

While it takes some of the ideas forwarded in the earlier work a couple of hundred years into the future, the series stands on its own. Having not read Misspent Youth did not detract from my enjoyment of this very insightful and entertaining series.

Hamilton's ability to propagate ideas and technologies into the future and envision their ultimate outcome is unmatched in the genre.

It's a great read and a fun ride.

Dean M. Cole
Hey Dean,

I'm slogging through the first book in the series, Pandora's Star, right now and am really enjoying it in all of it's vastness. Something to the tune of 1000-1200 pages depending on the printed edition. And as you know that is for one book! Talk about bang for the buck, if one measures value by weight it's a winner and might be the biggest for a trilogy. I am only about half-way through and I am already looking forward to the next two books.

Oh shoot, I just searched real quick and just now learned there are really only two novels in this Saga. I don't know why I though Void was the third novel, well at least Void is indeed part of a trilogy. oops!

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Old 04-11-2011, 03:18 PM   #5
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You know we are forgetting one rather large SF Saga series and that is the Honor Harrington stories by David Weber. Though now that I think about it, those stories my be more MilSF than pure SF Saga type stories. I know parts of On Basilisk Station bored me to tears as I am not enamored with details for the military stuff. It's as bad as listening to Johnny Miller talk about "grain" on TV during a golf tournament.

Still if you skim or actually enjoy MilSF the stories seem pretty fun and similar to the John Grimes stories with a lot more of the military detail tossed into the picture.
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Old 04-12-2011, 11:07 AM   #6
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@grumpy3b My apologies for the confusion. When i said "series" I was including the Void Trilogy. While they're not part of the Commonwealth Saga, they are part of the same literary universe and have a few of the same characters.

As you're already experiencing, the Commonwealth novels are very long, but great reads. The ending left me craving more, so the Void Trilogy was a welcome addition.

I'll have to check out David Weber's books. Being a military pilot and MilSF author I too am a huge fan of the genre.
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Old 04-12-2011, 12:08 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dean M. Cole View Post
I'll have to check out David Weber's books. Being a military pilot and MilSF author I too am a huge fan of the genre.
Getting a bit off topic here, but if you're interested in MilSF, David Drake's Hammer's Slammers is some of the best hard-core MilSF I've read.
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Old 04-12-2011, 12:16 PM   #8
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David Weber books are great. So are John Ringo with David Weber "March Upcountry books". I hope they go back to that series at some point.

I've been told Troy Rising is a good series but haven't had a chance to try it yet.

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Old 04-12-2011, 12:22 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dean M. Cole
just finished reading Peter F. Hamilton's Commonwealth Saga. It's a series of science fiction novels based on the British science fiction writer's previous novel, Misspent Youth.
...
Hamilton's ability to propagate ideas and technologies into the future and envision their ultimate outcome is unmatched in the genre.
I agree completely. In fact, I much prefer Hamilton's Commonwealth Universe to his more highly touted Confederation Universe (Night's Dawn).

The Void Trilogy that follows the Commonwealth Saga is quite worthy also. Misspent Youth should really be avoided at all costs. It contains very little that's relevant to the overall series and is generally regarded as some of Hamilton's weakest writing. I happen to agree with that assessment.
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Old 04-12-2011, 03:02 PM   #10
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@grumpy3b My apologies for the confusion. When i said "series" I was including the Void Trilogy. While they're not part of the Commonwealth Saga, they are part of the same literary universe and have a few of the same characters.

As you're already experiencing, the Commonwealth novels are very long, but great reads. The ending left me craving more, so the Void Trilogy was a welcome addition.

I'll have to check out David Weber's books. Being a military pilot and MilSF author I too am a huge fan of the genre.
Ahhhh, OK I see where I went wrong now, I misread one of the info blurbs somewhere. Nice to know my mind has not totally checked out before the rest of me. It's merely on extended vacation it seems.

Funny thing about Hamilton is the way he writes I don't really notice the length of the book other than the fact my progress counter is pretty much not moving on most days. And you are right, I am already wondering about Judas Unchained. I don't usually get into long series because at some point all authors do the 'Jump the Shark' thing. From that point it just seems they are trying to figure out what to do next on the fly. But so far I am liking everything.

I'm sure you know, most of Baen's catalog is MilSF these days. And in addition to the authors mentioned by others already, I think all of Pournelle's books are there. Many people don't remember he was mostly a MiSF author before it was a real sub-genre. Plus even with his health issues he is still a funny guy when he's in the mood but these days in a more sardonic fashion than years gone my, or that could just be, well him. haha...I've read his writing so long it feels like I know the guy personally. I did actually share a few words with him one year at Comdex even though he was incognito with a fake badge, I recognized him and he fessed up. Nice guy. And actually it was not until I wrote him one day asking about audiobook versions of his titles and he responded back asking if I would be interested in ebook versions instead. I sent a very enthusiastic yes. I am not sure had he not answered that note if I would have even gotten into ebooks seriously those many years ago now, at least 6-yrs as I count.

Now have to toddle off and see what novels you have out there.
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Old 04-12-2011, 03:09 PM   #11
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Hey Dean,

Read a bit of your story. Sounds fun, went ahead and grabbed a copy from your site. thanks for noting the author part of your background.
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Old 04-12-2011, 03:31 PM   #12
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I'm sure you know, most of Baen's catalog is MilSF these days.
While I do like the MilSF on Baen, I have to disagree with this statement (at least as far as ebooks go). There's *plenty* of Fantasy, hard Science Fiction, and even SF Humor.
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Old 04-12-2011, 03:36 PM   #13
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There's *plenty* of Fantasy, hard Science Fiction, and even SF Humor.
Don't forget Alternate History.
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Old 04-12-2011, 03:49 PM   #14
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Don't forget Alternate History.
And yes... Lots of Alternate History.
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Old 04-12-2011, 04:16 PM   #15
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Being a military pilot and MilSF author I too am a huge fan of the genre.
What do/did you fly? It should be fairly obvious what I flew. I've ran into a couple of other mil pilots here on this board. Username Pinecone also flew A-10s.
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