NPR is making a list of the 100 best SF/F books ever, and wants your top five picks! (Rules: series are allowed, but no YA, paranormal romance, or horror.)
I said, in no particular order:
- Susanna Clarke’s Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell. A rare truly novel fantasy.
- Octavia Butler’s Kindred (or Parable of the Sower/Parable of the Talents). Among the best time-travel & dystopia/post-apocalyptic stories, respectively.
- Gene Wolfe’s Book of the New Sun (series). Don’t ask me why unless you’ve got a couple hours to kill.
- Mary Gentle’s Ash. My favourite metafictional medieval alt-history science-fantasy doorstopper, as elaborated on elsewhere.
- Minister Faust’s Coyote Kings of the Space-Age Bachelor Pad. Like Snow Crash! But Canadian! And fantasy! And better!
I think asking for “all time” produces boring results, pretty much guaranteed to be dominated by stuff like LoTR and Ender’s Game. I’d be more interested in something like “best sf/f by authors first published in the past 10 years”. Or, while I’m wishing, “best sf/f by authors who are not both white and male”.
What are your top five?