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Old 03-07-2013, 08:14 AM   #31
DrNefario
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Oddly, Transitions was published as an Iain Banks (non-SF) in the UK, and an Iain M. Banks (SF) in the US.

I haven't read it yet. There was a time when I bought and read all his books on release, but I've fallen a few behind thanks to agency pricing.
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Old 03-07-2013, 06:32 PM   #32
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On the more soldier end, you might try David Drake's Slammers books.

On the space opera end, you might try Jack Vance's Demon Prince series...
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Old 03-09-2013, 03:41 AM   #33
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I'd suggest young adult sci-fi. The Hunger Games, obviously, and the first book of the series does actually live up to the hype. Also Scott Westerfeld is a very good writer, though they are much simpler.
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Old 03-09-2013, 03:54 AM   #34
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Oddly, Transitions was published as an Iain Banks (non-SF) in the UK, and an Iain M. Banks (SF) in the US.

I haven't read it yet. There was a time when I bought and read all his books on release, but I've fallen a few behind thanks to agency pricing.
I got a used paper copy from Abebooks Ebook prices are ridiculous.

If you haven't read Surface Detail, I recommend it. It's a straight-forward read, as Banks goes

I love the Algebraist so much that I re-read it, but the story doesn't start till about page 200, lol. The gas-giant dwellers are brilliant. They hunt and eat their own children and take drugs in the form of 'party-depositories'.
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Old 03-09-2013, 07:18 AM   #35
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If you haven't read Surface Detail, I recommend it. It's a straight-forward read, as Banks goes
Surface Detail was one of the four agency-priced ebooks I treated myself to at Christmas. I was forced to buy The Hydrogen Sonata in hardback to take advantage of a special offer while buying someone else a gift, and I couldn't leave a gap. I haven't quite got to it yet, but it is high on my list.
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Old 03-09-2013, 08:20 PM   #36
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I'm very fond of Lois McMaster Bujold's Vorkosigan books, and the earlier ones are definitely space opera (the later ones tend to be more comedy of manners).

I also like Steve Miller and Sharon Lee's Liaden books.
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Old 03-10-2013, 03:27 AM   #37
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Maybe the Lost Fleet series by Jack Campbell since you like The Forever War. It's a surprisingly weighty and serious read.

''The Alliance has been fighting the Syndics for a century, and losing badly. Now its fleet is crippled and stranded in enemy territory. Their only hope is a man who has emerged from a century-long hibernation to find he has been heroically idealized beyond belief.

Captain John "Black Jack" Geary's legendary exploits are known to every schoolchild. Revered for his heroic "last stand" in the early days of the war, he was presumed dead. But a century later, Geary miraculously returns from survival hibernation and reluctantly takes command of the Alliance fleet as it faces annihilation by the Syndics.

Appalled by the hero-worship around him, Geary is nevertheless a man who will do his duty. And he knows that bringing the stolen Syndic hypernet key safely home is the Alliance's one chance to win the war. But to do that, Geary will have to live up to the impossibly heroic "Black Jack" legend.''
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Old 03-10-2013, 02:32 PM   #38
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Looking through this, I was a bit surprised that no one has mentioned Jack McDevitt. Definitely intelligent space opera, but more character oriented. Both the Hutch series and the Alex Benedict are spectacular. (Would look up titles, etc. but Calibre is currently adding about 500 books I took out of storage and my computer is VERY slow.)
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Old 03-10-2013, 02:46 PM   #39
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Various books from Iain Banks's Culture series. Consider Phlebas is a good place to start.
They're not really in sequence, I started with The Player of Games which also worked brilliantly. I now buy every Culture-book... Some are harder to read and more mind-expanding than others, like Excession (I struggled with it until I realized it was easier to really consider the Minds as people, as the flesh people in that one were all unsympathetic).

I'm a beliver in the Eight Deadly Words when it comes to fiction: I Don't Care What Happens To These People is reason good enough to not finish a book.
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Old 03-10-2013, 02:53 PM   #40
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I've recently been going on a Walter Jon Williams binge. He's got all/most of his backlist up on Smashwords at very affordable prices! I finally got to read Aristoi, wonderful stuff. I've yet to read anything by him that I didn't like though I should have spaced out the Drake Maijstral books more as you can overdose on them.

Then of course there's CJ Cherryh. Start with the Chanur-series.
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Old 03-11-2013, 04:15 AM   #41
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Might one suggest the early Cyberpunk novels by William Gibson, Bruce Sterling's earlier works and the amazing (IMHO) John Brunner who wrote the seminal Stand on Zanzibar

Off the beaten track a little, I offer you Mark Chadbourn (fantasy, amazing use of folklore) - Start with The Age of Misrule
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Old 03-11-2013, 09:45 AM   #42
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Can I ask, is there anything out there like Anathem? I truly love that novel, the work Neal Stephenson put into creating that world, how believable it is, how well rounded the characters are, and obviously the examinations of the broader theme of classical maths and philosophy.

I love that book.
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Old 03-11-2013, 07:32 PM   #43
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specsavage, I enjoy McDevitt but his Hutch series is closer to hard SF than space opera (the scope of the plots are narrow) and his Benedict series (just finishing up book 4) is more mystery than SF. I mean the Benedict MacGuffins are quite SF but the essentially-mystery plots could be rewritten into other genres.

I found the Hutch series to be overly formulaic but still entertaining.

The Benedict series is better written, IMO. I am still unhappy with some of the ways they get into trouble. Just how many times do you need the asteroid deflection system on your spaceship to be manually operable before you just leave it in that configuration? And if I were them I'd be checking out every skimmer I used more thoroughly, lol. It isn't paranoia if they really ARE out to get you. Okay, more serious note, I felt his characters don't show enough emotion, considering the wringers he puts them through.
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Old 03-13-2013, 03:55 AM   #44
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Can I ask, is there anything out there like Anathem? I truly love that novel, the work Neal Stephenson put into creating that world, how believable it is, how well rounded the characters are, and obviously the examinations of the broader theme of classical maths and philosophy.

I love that book.
I haven't read Anathem yet (shame on me), but I'm wondering if some of Dan Simmons books might suit.

He wrote some science fiction based on mythology that I also have never read. But he's a very sophisticated writer, much like Stephenson. So perhaps you'd enjoy these.
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Old 03-31-2013, 06:20 PM   #45
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I'm almost done with Revelation Space. Far from the best characterisation on earth but an interesting grim universe. Strangly reminiscent of Warhamer 40k in some oddly specific ways. It's falling down at the end though. What should be a thrilling answer filled final act is just sort fizzling limply along.

Chasm City seems interesting though.
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