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  1. #1
    Rocketsheep
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    Science fiction for young readers.

    I can find heaps of titles aimed at teenagers but because 'children's fiction' has assumed it IS a genre (kids don't have tastes?) I have to rely on word of mouth to find good titles for the under 12's.

    Do you know any?

  2. #2
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    Heilein's 'Star Beast' is excellent for for young readers (and older ones too, actually). Andre Norton's Beast Master book and its sequel are also good.
    You might also think about Ender's Game; it's quite violent in places, but is certainly compelling, and is written in a fairly simple style.

  3. #3
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    Heinlein, Asimov and Norton all published a number of juveniles. I grew up on that stuff! I bet it's still good, but can you find it in print? Nowadays I suppose kids would read Star Wars and other novelizations of Science Fictions movies and TV shows. My kids read Fantasy, but no Science fiction yet.

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    Ray Bradbury. First read him around that age and it blew my mind, became my favorite writer until I went to college.

    Also the famous Madeleine L'Engle books in the WRINKLE IN TIME series, although it's probably more fantasy than SF, really.

    I used to read the Tom Swift books when I was very young (before Bradbury). I have no idea whether they still publish them. Very optimistic by-the-numbers sf, nothing too special.

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    Hi. Clifford D. Simak's books rarely have violence or sexual content. They are some great books. I would recommend Highway of Eternity or Special Deliverance. Also, there is a writer named William Sleator. I read a book by him when I was an eighth grader called Singularity. It is awesome! I still own that book.

  6. #6
    masochistic biscuit
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    caves of steel-asimov and wasn't ender's game originally aimed at children?

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    H.M Hoover had some scifi books published back in the mid to late 80's that were aimed toward younger readers. I'm not sure if they are still in print or not, but here are the titles. This isn't a series. Each is a stand alone novel, and all are fairly short.

    Children of Morrow
    The Delikon
    The Lost Star
    Return to Earth
    This Time of Darkness
    The Shepard Moon

  8. #8
    Rocketsheep
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    Thank you everyone... excellent tips.

  9. #9
    Registered User lemming's Avatar
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    Children of Morrow is an excellent one.

    Also, all the Danny Dunn books, Escape to Witch Mountain (and the rest of Alexander Key's stuff if you can find it), everything by William Sleator (especially The Boy who Reversed Himself, Strange Attractors, House of Stairs), and Children of the Dust by Lawrence if you can find it.

    Also The Girl With the Silver Eyes, forgot who wrote it, but unlike most of my list it's STILL IN PRINT, whoa what a thought. Keeping good books in print. Amazon has it.

  10. #10
    Carmichael
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    The Asimovs did a couple of sci-fi paperbacks about an unusually talented robot named Norby. They are about 10 years old or so. Kinda silly, but not a bad read.

    Carmichael

  11. #11
    Seeker of Stuff Moderator Kamakhya's Avatar
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    I recently bought the Wrinkle in Time series for my 8 yr. old daughter. I read it as a kid, but really didn't remember it, so I just reread it. The best thing about A Wrinkle in Time is the great lead female role. I find it so hard to find books for her that show strong women, particularly in the SF/Fantasy genre. I am currently reading The Wizard of Earthsea to her. While Le Guin is one of my all time favorite authors, the Earthsea trilogy has absolutely no female characters of any merit.

    The downside (for me) of A Wrinkle in Time is that there are some fairly heavy religious (Christian) references. (We are not Christian.) But, I talked to my daughter about it before she started it and she was ok with that.

    The story is pretty much your basic good overcomes evil through love. But, what makes it a great introduction to SF is it uses tesseracts to travel through time and space, has neat aliens and visions of distant planets.


  12. #12
    Rocketsheep
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    Talking

    Thanks again everyone. I'm going to find this info extremely useful.

    Now, if I were talking SF movies to say... a ten year old... what do you think their range of experience would be?


    Poor little things haven't even heard of War of the Worlds or Day of the Triffids!

  13. #13
    Senior Member Pirate Jenn's Avatar
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    RocketSheep-- (are those retro-boosters genetically grafted on?)

    No one (I am shocked) has mentioned Sylvia Engdahl's "Enchantress From the Stars" (a good, perspective-bending book which blends Fantasy and Sci-Fi interestingly). This was a Newberry Honor book.

    The Giver, by Lois Lowry--not hard science, but very Bradbury-esque.

    Also, there's a series out by Lois McMaster Bujold about a Miles Vorkosigan that, I think (the first book, The Warrior's Apprentice) would make good reading for a younger audience.

    There's an old series (if you can find it--check the used book stores) called "The Planetbuilders" written under the name Robin Tallis. The series can be read out of order and I recall reading them at about 11 or so.

    There does seem an absence of newer sf vs. fantasy for youngsters--which is a shame.

    (As to movies/etc... a sf-bent ten year old would still like Day of the Triffids, if you can find it <g>)

  14. #14
    Rocketsheep
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    Talking

    Thank you, thank you. I get to corrupt... er... influence a pile of preteens towards the wonders of science fiction. My list is coming along nicely now.

  15. #15
    With 4 children, this is a subject I've been interested in for a while. Some good suggestions on this thread, thanks all.
    Apart from those mentioned, the following (excluding fantasy as offtopic for this thread) have all been read and enjoyed by my eldest (now 11.5 years old), and several by my second (now 9.5 years old):

    The Witches of Karres - Schmidt (iirc)

    Next of Kin - Eric Frank Russell

    The Tripods trilogy - John Christopher (The White Mountains, The City of Gold and Lead, The Pool of Fire)

    Various excellent Heinleins:

    Have space suit, will travel
    The tunnel in the sky
    Citizen of the galaxy
    Starman Jones
    The star beast

    In fact, the Star Beast was the least enjoyed of the Heinleins, I gather, because it was "a bit slow" at the start.

    I'm on the lookout for several more books I remember as good from my own childhood - one in particular being Mission of Gravity by (I think) Clements.

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