Could anyone recommend a novel with a small-ship setting?

Discussion in 'Science Fiction' started by Spokowma, Dec 10, 2012.

  1. Spokowma

    Spokowma New Member

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    Alright so this is my first post ever here so forgive me if I'm doing any faux-pas but I was wondering if anyone could recommend me a novel that follows the crew of a small spaceship. I just finished Leviathan Wakes and Calibans War and I like the Rocinante setting. Preferably I'd like something with a heavy focus on characters. Anyways a couple guiding points if this is vague. The whole thing doesn't have to take place in the ship just that they have to spend a decent amount of time in it. The science doesn't have to make perfect sense but I do prefer it to follow something which my friend calls the "future 17th century" pretty much no instant communication and travel between systems takes weeks if not months. Don't know how much people like it here but the best approximation I could give for what Im looking for is something like Firefly.
     
  2. krisbslick

    krisbslick Executor

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    Chris Bunch's Star Risk Ltd. Series, is the first thing that came to mind.

    (If you aren't opposed to Star Wars) The X-wing Series (especially Wraith Squadron) follows a group of closely knit rebel fighter jocks.

    I didn't put either of these through your 17th century science filter, but if you're looking for a good story these are pretty good books.

    So, proceed with caution.

    I would be interested as well to see what people post here.
     
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2012
  3. Jennifer P

    Jennifer P Registered User

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    Going old school, C.J. Cherryh's Chanur series might fit your needs - it's about a freighter crew, they aren't exactly quick traveling. However, it's also set in a completely alien culture with one token human.

    Any of Cherryh's Merchanter books could also fit, but those ships are somewhat larger, with entire clans on board.

    (I'm not obsessed with Cherryh, that's just all I have in that vein).
     
  4. runaroundace

    runaroundace Registered User

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    While I know little of this book as I just found out about it today, and it doesn't come out until July. I read your post right before I red the description of this book, and it says "vivid characters of Joss Whedon’s Firefly". So I thought it might be something you were interested in. The book is called The Darwin Elevator. Here is the link:

    http://www.randomhouse.com/book/220299/the-darwin-elevator-by-jason-m-hough
     
  5. Omphalos

    Omphalos Orthodox Herbertian

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    A space elevator in Darwin Australia? Is that close enough to the equator to work?
     
  6. runaroundace

    runaroundace Registered User

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    let me get out my tri-pod and theodolite I will check.

    (Haha sorry just trying to be funny, I have no idea how a space elevator would work, or what it has to do with the equator).
     
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2012
  7. Danogzilla

    Danogzilla Couch Commander

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    It would need to be close to the equator to take advantage of centripetal force.
     
  8. runaroundace

    runaroundace Registered User

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    Interesting, stuff like that never crosses my mind.
     
  9. Quimby

    Quimby yep

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    Chris Wooding's Tales of the Ketty Jay series should fit the bill.
     
  10. DurzoBlint

    DurzoBlint http://tinyurl.com/363ogv

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    I'll second Wooding's Tales of the Ketty Jay. Not in space, but just like Firefly. While a little bit different from being a close-knit group, you may want to try the CassaFire/CassaStar series. It is about a hot shot space fighter pilot. Really arrogant but a small feel to the story.
     
  11. psikeyhackr

    psikeyhackr Live Long & Suffer

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    A lot of stories in the Man-Kzin Wars series fit that description but I don't recall which ones.

    psik
     
  12. JimF

    JimF Registered User

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    Elizabeth Moon's Vatta's war series takes place on small ships and I enjoyed them a great deal.
     
  13. Andols

    Andols I like stories

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    try the Gap series. never gets much mention but i think its fantastic. little darker than the expanse
     
  14. Vandervecken

    Vandervecken Registered User

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    Poul Anderson's Polesotechnic League yarns could be worth a look, especially the later David Falkayn ones where he teams up with Adzel and Chee Lan.
     
  15. Sfinx

    Sfinx Life's a riddle

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    Second that. Excellent series. Ringworld also came to mind - but doesn't exactly fit the bill. Very good read though :)

    Cheers,

    Sfinx.

    EDIT: if not in the mood for reading: Red Dwarf the one to watch!
     
  16. Inconnu

    Inconnu Registered User

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    F.M. Busby Star Rebel series - if you can find it

    I'll agree with the Vatta war and Chanur series.
     
  17. Wilson Geiger

    Wilson Geiger Greymane

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    It absolutely should.
     
  18. starman03

    starman03 Registered User

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    I've just finished Take Back Plenty by Colin Greenland and I think it probably fits the bill. A lot of time is spent on the main protagonist's ship as they bomb around the solar system getting into trouble.
    The captain is a down on her luck cargo ship captain, which is obviously a well-used trope in SF but I felt the story was interesting enough to be different. Also, a lot of emphasis is placed on the relationship between the captain and her ship's computer persona, as well as on the captain’s emotional connection with the ship itself. Similarly, a lot of the backstory we get is based on the captain's exploits as a spaceship pilot prior to the present.
    Overall, I would say it is definitely a book for readers who like the archetype of down and out spacers up against the odds.
     
  19. Omphalos

    Omphalos Orthodox Herbertian

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    the last few books in Asimov's Foundation series (the ones Asimov himself wrote) are set partly in a small ship.
     
  20. Caedus

    Caedus Registered User

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    Larry Niven - The Mote In God's Eye aligns closely with what you're going for there as the 'science' there is quite low tech and plausible. i.e, Transmissions take ages to reach their destination and interstellar travel comes with a lot of complications. There's also a lot of character building.

    But the ship itself is rather large (think Star Trek).

    Another one I just thought of that I don't think anybody has mentioned is Tau Zero. It's setting is mainly a small, very small ship. How well the characters are 'built' and presented though depends on who you ask. I personally found them insufferable and flat, but the novel itself won a Hugo award so I don't know. In any case if you're planning on giving it a shot, be forewarned, that this is HARD hard sci fi. As in not too deep into the novel you'll be treated to a set of equations and long winded techno babble.