Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Seven works of speculative fiction that don’t feel all that speculative

Jeff Somers is the author of Lifers, the Avery Cates series from Orbit Books, Chum from Tyrus Books, and We Are Not Good People from Pocket/Gallery. He has published over thirty short stories as well. One of Somers's top seven speculative works for those who think they hate speculative fiction, as shared at the B & N Sci-Fi & Fantasy Blog:
The Martian, by Andy Weir

With the film’s promotional campaign in overdrive, everyone’s aware of this used-to-be-a-sleeper hit. The trailers may look sci-fi to you—Mars, spacesuits, that sort of thing—but don’t be fooled. This novel rocks thanks to its fantastic narrative voice in the personage of sarcastic, desperate, a hilarious astronaut Mark Watney, and it’s ideal for people who think they hate science fiction because it’s only SF element is that it’s set on Mars during a near-future manned mission to the planet. Everything else is rooted entirely in real science, and involves one man struggling against nature to survive—the fact that the nature involved isn’t Earth’s is just a detail, really.
Read about another entry on the list.

The Martian is among Somer's five top sci-fi novels with plausible futuristic technology, Ernest Cline’s ten favorite SF novels, and James Mustich's five top books on visiting Mars.

--Marshal Zeringue