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  1. #1
    Lord of the Wild Hunt Mithfânion's Avatar
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    Best Space Opera

    Which series deserves this award in your opinion? I was thinking of either Hyperion or Hamilton's Disruption of Reality series, but I admit that I'm not well-read in Sci-Fi so there may be a lot I'm missing/

  2. #2
    mistress of pigeons Ladijen's Avatar
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    I've heard the term, but I've never been sure of it's meaning--what is "space opera"? Is it like a science fiction soap opera?

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    Administrator Administrator Hobbit's Avatar
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    I've sen it described as "tales of adventure among the stars".So on that basis a good example would be EE Doc Smith's Lensman series.
    Perhaps "Star Wars" films might be another way of illustrating Space Opera.

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    Please ignore what I posted above!Follow the link and get a much better idea than mine.....I must learn to scroll to the end of a thread before posting in future

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    mistress of pigeons Ladijen's Avatar
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    Thanks for the link! It all makes sense now...

    I have not read most of the series' that were discussed, but of those I have read, I really liked the first few Dune books (not space opera, it was stated) and I am enjoying the Uplift series.

    It wasn't mentioned there, and maybe it is TOO light (or perhaps too cheesy?) for you experts in science fiction, but has anyone read the "Bio of a Space Tyrant" series by Piers Anthony? I thoroughly enjoyed those books--just plain fun!

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    Administrator Administrator Hobbit's Avatar
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    Pleasure!

    Pleased the link helps.

    Mithfânion - is it Peter Hamilton's Night's Dawn series you mean? If so, out of the two you mention, Dan Simmons is the best, though I like Peter Hamilton. Simmons's works on so many levels - and I really liked the Endymion sequel too. Hamilton has the range (and weight!) of space opera - many many characters in many places and situations, though I have heard it said (probably round here!) that his style is very 'British' and that it can get some getting used to.

    As for 'best' soap opera....hmmm...probably would have to go for the obvious and say Frank Herbert's Dune, in terms of scope and depth as well as length.

    Hobbit
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  8. #8
    Yep, I've read the Bio of a Space Tyrant series and found it quite enjoyable.

  9. #9
    Lord of the Wild Hunt Mithfânion's Avatar
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    Hobbit,I'm not sure. How many series has Hamilton written?

    I wonder what sort of style is defined as "british"

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    Administrator Administrator Hobbit's Avatar
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    Yes, I know what you mean, Mith - being British, it threw me for a minute or two. I think what was meant that it was in a rather calm, responsible 'stiff upper lip' style - Arthur C Clarke is the nearest comparison I can think of perhaps, or Stephen Baxter. (I'm not saying I agree with the comment btw!)

    That of course then begs the question 'if that's British, then what is XXX?' Something to think about for later, perhaps.

    To answer the other question, Hamilton has only really written two main series - the most well known is the Night's Dawn Trilogy.

    In essence they are:

    1. Reality Dysfunction
    2. Neuronium Alchemist
    3. Naked God
    but -
    4. A Second Chance at Eden is a book of short stories in the same series.

    There is a book that gives an overview (the Confederation Handbook) of the Night's Dawn series.

    His first series in the UK though was the Greg Mandel series. Mandel is a sort of a psi-boosted mercenary cyber-detective in a near future UK where the climate has changed and the country is run by multinationals and an extreme government.

    They are: Mindstar Rising (1993), A Quantum Murder (1994) and The Nano Flower (1995).

    Quite entertaining and perhaps easier to get into than the Night's Dawn series.

    Hobbit
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  11. #11
    Lord of the Wild Hunt Mithfânion's Avatar
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    Thanks Hobbit, it must be the Night's dawn trilogy then. I see the first book resembles what I thought was the overall title for the series.


    Hobbit, you've read a lot of sc-fi. Difficult as it is, what's your top 5?

    P.s.

    I did put Mote in God's eye by Niven and Pournelle on the list , that seemed like a good book to get acquainted with the genre.

  12. #12
    Administrator Administrator Hobbit's Avatar
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    Not an easy one to answer Mith - like any book it's tied in with when you read it, what you were doing at the time and what you remember.

    However - here's a start (in no order of importance) - these will no doubt change when I stop typing (and there's more than 5!)

    OLDIES - BUT THE MEMORIES HAVE LASTED
    Dune - Frank Herbert
    Stars My Destination - Alfred Bester
    Martian Chronicles - Ray Bradbury
    Left Hand of Darkness - Ursula K leGuin
    Canticle for Leibowitz - Walter M Miller
    Flowers for Algernon - Daniel Keyes
    Earth Abides - George R Stewart
    City - Clifford Simak
    Startide Rising - David Brin
    Moving Mars - Greg Bear
    Man in the High Castle - Philip K Dick

    OLDIES AND MORE PERSONAL
    Early Heinlein - probably his short stories most, so The Past through Tomorrow. The first 'real' SF book I read was Tunnel in the Sky - then read the rest!
    Foundation Series - Asimov - a little dated but still good;
    Childhood's End/Songs of Distant Earth/2001 - A C Clarke (one of my boy heroes - a little dated but the ideas and the optimism are great!)

    MORE RECENTS
    Mars Series - Kim Stanley Robinson
    Hyperion/Endymion - Dan Simmons
    Some Stephen Baxter (a modern AC Clarke, though I really hated their collaboration The Light of Other Days!),
    Iain M Banks - Culture Series - start with Consider Phlebas, though they get better,
    Lois McMaster Bujold's Miles Vorkosigan Series,

    and I must admit that Richard Morgan's Altered Carbon was great.

    Hobbit
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  13. #13
    Administrator Administrator Hobbit's Avatar
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    ...and Frederik Pohl's Gateway....and Poul Anderson's Tau Zero....and CJ Cherryh's Downbelow Station....and Joan Vinge's Snow Queen.....AND Ash, A secret History by Mary Gentle (it's both Sf & Fantasy...thoroughly recommended in its complete form.)

    *sigh...see what I mean?*


    Hobbit
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  14. #14
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    My personal favourite single such book would be 'Gateway'. K.S. Robinsons 'Mars' trilogy , even with all its faults, is my favourite space opera series.

  15. #15
    Who me? SusF's Avatar
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    Spiders series by W. Michael Gear was excellent.

    Warriors of the Spider
    Way of the Spider
    Web of the Spider

    I liked all of Gear's space opera books. I have not read his more recent stuff which he's written with his wife.

    Susan

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