I love reading. If I’m not reading, I’m thinking about reading and feeling guilty for how long it’s been since I’ve read. Every couple of years I’ll go through a period where I don’t read for months – maybe even a year – and I feel terrible about it. So, I’ve kicked it into overdrive, and have started churning through my backlog of books faster than I thought I would be. I’m quickly approaching a situation where I’ve read through the majority of series I’ve heard are good. So now, I want to know what books you’re reading and whether you’ve got any recommendations for me, dear Chatty. I’d prefer sci-fi, but I’m open to reading other bits and pieces.
As for what I’ve been reading and what I’ve read in the genre previously, let’s talk about that.
Remembrance of Earth’s Past
Right now, I’m working through the Remembrance of Earth’s Past saga by Chinese author, Cixin Liu. I’m on to the last novel in the trilogy, and making good time through it. Aside from hearing how great this series is, I was also reading it in preparation for the TV series – which is in production this year and hopefully coming out in 2022.
Just in case it wasn’t clear, I love Halo. I’ve got a couple of one-off novels that I plan to read after I’ve finished with the aforementioned. There’s New Blood and Hunters in the Dark, which I believe to be separate stories. I’ll likely go digging for more within the Halo series, as they’re quite enjoyable for someone like me, who – as we’ve established – loves Halo.
After reading the saga 15 years ago, I’ve revisited it in preparation for the Denis Villenveuve’s Dune movie – which will hopefully be out this year. I’m currently partially through Children of Dune, with plans to wrap on Chapterhouse: Dune. Now, I have read one of Brian Herbert’s Dune novels, but didn’t find that it managed to hit the same notes that Frank Herbert’s do. Might it be worth revisiting this bias and trying them out again?
The Hyperion Cantons is probably one of my favorite series that doesn’t get mainstream attention. I love the ideas and themes presented in here, as well as the fusion between Catholicism and its stranglehold on space exploration. This is borderline fantasy, which I typically avoid, but it manages to be more of a social sci-fi, which are great fun.
The Night’s Dawn trilogy
Peter F. Hamilton’s Reality Dysfunction, and the ensuing sequels, are top-notch science fiction. The book manages to touch on the problem of life-after-death and space travel between the stars. Instead of making an alien race the enemy, it’s something far more insidious and I loved everything about it.
You can’t talk about sci-fi novels without talking about Frank Herbert and the other king, Isaac Asimov. I’ve read through the Foundation series a couple of times now, and I must admit they got weaker towards the end – even though I did enjoy them. With the TV series coming out soon, I’m excited to see how it translates to the screen.
There are a whole lot of honourable mentions out there, and from other genres. I loved the Dice Man, Neuromancer, Ringworld, and Catch-22. I’ve even read through Atlas Shrugged after playing BioShock back in the day. I do have Red Mars waiting for me, which I hear is a pretty great series.
I’ve got some more novels waiting for me to read, but I like having a good backlog for me to dive into. People often suggest the Wheel of Time series, but I just do not relish the idea of having something like 14 books in a series. I’d feel locked in to having to read them all. So what novels have you been reading and what do you always say people have to read? Give me your recommendations!