Thursday, July 12, 2012

Ten science fiction novels we pretend to have read

Charlie Jane Anders, editor at io9, checked in with some favorite writers and came up with a list of "10 science fiction and fantasy books that everybody pretends to have read — and the reasons why you should read them for real."

One entry on the list:
1984 by George Orwell

The classic dystopian novel that gave us Newspeak and Big Brother.

"I think a lot of people pretend to have read Orwell's 1984 and haven't. It's such a prevalent cultural meme, that I think that everyone assumes they know what someone is talking about when they refer to it," says Christopher Moore, author of Lamb, Fluke and The Stupidest Angel. But he adds:
In a culture where we make assumptions about the freedom of information, and privacy, I think 1984 is more relevant than ever. It's an easy read, and there is a real sense of humanity in the text that is immediate and relevant. It's the source book for dozens of dystopian books and movies that have come since it's publication, so I think a lot of lights go on when you read it.
Read about another book on the list.

Nineteen Eighty-four is #7 on a list of the 100 best last lines from novels. The book made Juan E. Méndez's list of five books on torture, P. J. O’Rourke's list of the five best political satires, Daniel Johnson's five best list of books about Cold War culture, Robert Collins' top ten list of dystopian novels, Gemma Malley's top 10 list of dystopian novels for teenagers, is one of Norman Tebbit's six best books and one of the top ten works of literature according to Stephen King. It made a difference to Isla Fisher, and appears on John Mullan's lists of ten of the best Aprils in literature, ten of the best rats in literature, and ten of the best horrid children in fiction.

--Marshal Zeringue