Amazon Lists Their 100 Science Fiction & Fantasy Books to Read in a Lifetime

by | Oct 21, 2015 | Fantasy Commentary, Musing & Brain Teasers, Sci-Fi Commentary | 0 comments


Amazon just made a list of 100 Science Fiction & Fantasy Books to Read in a Lifetime. I went through the list and I had read 23 (I didn’t count ones where I’d seen a film adaptation, which would have brought the number up considerably).

Which ones have I read?

  1. 1984 (assigned in jr. high school)
  2. A Game of Thrones
  3. A Wrinkle in Time (found it in the elementary school library)
  4. American Gods (killed a great idea I had for a story about classical gods living in modern times… oops)
  5. Assassin’s Apprentice
  6. Brave New World
  7. Dragonflight
  8. Dune (the series went downhill quickly after the second)
  9. Ender’s Game (long before it was ever a movie)
  10. Frankenstein
  11. Good Omens
  12. H.P. Lovecraft: Tales (not sure it was this particular anthology, but I’ve read his collected shorts)
  13. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone
  14. Neuromancer (it was like reading the rough draft of The Matrix, but written before anyone had heard of an “internet”)
  15. Ringworld (as a worldbuilder, I found it to be a brilliant piece of worldbuilding)
  16. The Color of Magic (it may be the first Discworld book, but it should be Small Gods on this list)
  17. The Eye of the World (my current read, but I’m counting it)
  18. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (I wish I could push my snark to the level of Adams)
  19. The Hobbit
  20. The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe (the book that taught me that old houses didn’t have closets)
  21. The Lord of the Rings
  22. The Name of the Wind (as good as it is, it might have been nice to let the series wrap up before assigning it a place on the podium)
  23. The Sword of Shannara

I was surprised at some of the very recent novels that made this all-timey sort of list, but I have to admit, it’s a pretty good list. There are a lot of classics I’ve been meaning to get around to, and most of the very recent ones just haven’t percolated to the top of my TBR list.

Most surprising inclusion: The Martian

As of typing this sentence, The Martian is not yet a year old (Amazon’s publication date is Oct 28, 2014… I realize self-published versions had been around for a little while before then). Andy Weir has just taken the sci-fi community by storm, and his masterpiece has rocketed onto all-time lists already

Most surprising omission: Twilight

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying it should be on the list, but I was surprised that it wasn’t. Amazon is nothing if not aware of sales and marketing, and few books have achieved that level of success.

Make you pick!

Post books you think should have made it onto the list, and feel free to nominate ones to give up a spot for your pick.

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