Going on a bug hunt.

It was the 1960 Hugo Awards winner for Best Novel. The novel has been criticized for overt its social and political themes, which some call militaristic, racist, and fascist. The novel is Starship Troopers by Robert A. Heinlein. The story follow Juan Rico from his enlistment in the Mobile Infantry through his eventual promotion to lieutenant during the Bug War.

Despite all of the controversy around the book, I must say I really enjoyed it. Accoridng to Wikipedia, the book is on the reading lists for several branches of the military. I was required reading for actors playing marines in the movie Aliens.

We also have the novel on cassette and CD.

The Last Man Alive

I Am Legend starring Will Smith just opened. It's based on a story of the same name by Richard Matheson. In both the movie and story, Robert Neville survives a deadly disease that has wiped out most of mankind. Most, if not all of those remaining have been turned into Darkseekers, vampire-like creatures. Neville spends his time trying to find a cure for the disease as well as trying to survive in the hostile, post-apocalyptic world. This isn't the first time I Am Legend has been made into a movie. You can see Charlton Heston battles violent, light-sensitive albino mutants as he tries to find a cure for humanity in The Omega Man.

Actually, the story reminds me a lot of a book I'm reading by Max Brooks, World War Z. It's the oral history of those who survived a terrible virus that turned people into mindless zombies! The book is well writen and is very thought provoking.

Grand Dame of Science Fiction and Fantasy

I love a good classic. If you've read any of my other blogs, you've probably guessed that already. Here's another great series by the Grand Dame of Science Fiction and Fantasy, Andre Norton. As a matter of fact, I just started readingf Lords of Thunder, the second book in the Beast Master Series. If you'd like to read the series, start with Beast Master's Planet, which contains both Beast Master & Lord of Thunder. The third story is Beast Master's Ark followed by Beast Master Circus, and lastely Beast Master's Quest.

Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep

Have you ever noticed that most movies based on a book just aren't as good as the book themselves? Here's an exception, Blade Runner. The movie is loosely based on a story called Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep by Philip K. Dick, originally published in 1968. Rick Deckard is a bounty hunter, who "retires" androids, who have escaped to Earth from the Mars colony. In the movie he's played by Harrison Ford. People who have left the radioactive dust of our partially destroyed Earth are given androids as servants. Each android has a life expectancy of about 4 years and are treated as slaves. They are made entirely of organic materials, making them almost indistinguishable from normal humans. It's Rick's job to find the most recently escaped androids that are loose in the city.

Out of This World: Great Sci-Fi and Fantasy (Nancy Pearl's Picks)

Nancy PearlNancy Pearl

"I don't consider myself at all a science fiction/fantasy fanatic, I must say that selecting the books for this topic was harder than any of the others that I've done. There is simply so much excellent stuff out there — both new and old — that I know people would enjoy, that the list could have been at least four times as long.

Did she pick any of your favorites?

The Life of Stile

Stile is a serf on Proton and a player of the Game. His alternate self, the Blue Adept, on Phaze has been killed and now Stile can travel between the worlds. Can Stile find his enemy that kis trying to kill him on both worlds? You can follow Stiles adventures on both worlds in Piers Anthony's Apprentice Adept series, Split Infinity, Blue Adept, and Juxtaposition.

Move over Spice Girls

The Spice Boy has come to town. Hi name is Paul Atreides. Paul was the son of Duke Leto of the House Atreides. Paul's father dies, leaving Paul as heir. Unfortunately, he's on the run for the Harkonnens. You can learn all about Paul in Frank Herbert's science fiction classic Dune. After being turned down by 20 publishers until it was finally picked by by Chilton, the company the prints car repair manuals. Dune went on to receive the 1965 Nebula award for best novel and shared the 1966 Hugo award. You can also listed to the book on cassette or CD. The book has been adapted to the screen twice, in 1984 and in 2000.

Psychohistorically Speaking

Psychohistory, the fictional science developed by Hari Seldon which combined history, sociology, and mathematical statistitics to create a (nearly) exact science of the actions of very large groups of people. The entire fate of the Galactic Empire rested upon those principles. You can learn more by reading Isaac Asimov's classic Foundation series, Foundation (Book/Audio), Foundation & Empire (Book/Audio), and Second Foundation (Book/Audio). As the years went by, Asimov expanded his Robots and Empires series to make them part of the same universe. Other authors have contributed to the series after Asimov's death.


Into sci fi or fantasy? Of a good, fast-paced read? Try Atherton: The House of Power by Patrick Carman. Atherton is the story of a boy named Edgar who lives on a planet that was created because the Earth is dying from pollution. Atherton is a world geographically divided into three tiers, where the elite at the top live off the work done by the people that live down below. Edgar is a farmer on the middle level and decides one day to climb up to the top level and discover what it is like to live on top.

But Atherton isn’t a safe place to live either. The three levels are starting to fall into each other and all people are in danger of being eaten by the scavengers living at the very bottom. Check out the Hungry City Chronicles by Philip Reeve for more exciting dystopia reads.

What is a Slan?

A Slan is a highly evolved human, discovered by Samuel Lann. The legend says Lann exposed his wife to a mutation machine, producing three mutated offspring, two girls and a boy. Over a period of 1500 years, more Slans appeared. During that time, mankind and Slans fought a bitter war, in which the humans triumphed. It is not the human policy to hunt down and kill any Slan. So goes Slan by A. E. van Vogt, written in 1946. We also have an audio version.

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