Posts Tagged ‘science fiction’

Next Round of SciFi Books

Wednesday, July 16th, 2014

Hi Everybody

Here is our next round of books for exciting discussions at Manchester SciFi Book Club:

19th August – Old Man’s War by John Scalzi (318p)
16th Sept – A Connecticut Yankee in the Court of King Arthur by Mark Twain (272p)
21st Oct – Beggars in Spain by Nancy Kress (400p)
18th Nov – Manhattan in Reverse by Peter F Hamilton (320p)
20th Jan – We by Yevgeny Zamyatin (256p)
17th Feb – Robopocalypse by Daniel H Wilson (384p)

Don’t forget our next book on 15th Jul, which is Nova by Samuel R Delany.

See you next book!

Manchester Sci-Fi Book Club Contacts:

You can contact us via twitter @mcrsf_madlab or by using #mcrsf

Keep up to date with Manchester Sci-Fi book club posts at Madlab

We also have a group on Google which we would encourage you to join.

Manchester SciFi Book Club on Google+

Post by Daniel Wells, Manchester Sci-Fi Book Club.

SciFi Book Club – Synners

Sunday, October 6th, 2013
Sci-Fi Book Club

Sci-Fi Book Club

Title: Sci-Fi Book Club
Location: MadLab
Description: A book club for fans of science fiction.
Date: 21-01-2014
Start Time: 19:00
End Time: 21:00

Synners

This month we’re reading Synners by Pat Cadigan.

Manchester Sci-Fi Book Club Contacts

You can contact us via Twitter @mcrsf_madlab using #mcrsf

Keep up to date with Manchester Sci-Fi book club posts at Madlab

We also have a group on Google which we would encourage you to join.

Manchester SciFi Book Club on Google+

Next Sci-Fi Book:

21st Jan – Synners by Pat Cadigan (496p)

18th Feb – The Martian Chronicles by Ray Bradbury (241p)

18th Mar – Self Reference Engine by toh EnJoe (286p)

15th Apr – The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood (336p)

20th May – Downbelow Station by CJ Cherryh (477p)

17th Jun – Adam Robots (short stories) by Adam Roberts (400p)

15th Jul – Nova by Samuel R Delany (256p)

Sci-Fi Book Club – Brave New World

Monday, September 16th, 2013
Sci-Fi Book Club

Sci-Fi Book Club

Title: Sci-Fi Book Club – Brave New World
Location: MadLab
Description: A book club for fans of science fiction.
Date: 15-10-2013
Start Time: 19:00
End Time: 21:00

Brave New World by Aldous Huxley

This month we are reading the classic dystopian novel Brave New World by Aldous Huxley.

Brave New World is a novel written in 1931 by Aldous Huxley and published in 1932. Set in London of AD 2540 (632 A.F. – “After Ford” – in the book), the novel anticipates developments in reproductive technology, sleep-learning, psychological manipulation, and operant conditioning that combine to profoundly change society.

We will also be discussing ideas for future books to read, so please feel free to make suggestions!

Manchester Sci-Fi Book Club Contacts

You can contact us via Twitter @mcrsf_madlab using #mcrsf

Keep up to date with Manchester Sci-Fi book club posts at Madlab

We also have a group on Google which we would encourage you to join.

Manchester SciFi Book Club on Google+

Next Sci-Fi Book:

  • Nov 19th – The Call of Cthulhu and Other Weird Tales by H.P. Lovecraft*

*There are several versions of this book and not all of them include the Other Weird Tales, so please try to purchase the version published 25/07/02; ISBN 13: 9780141187068, thanks!

See you next book!

Sci-Fi Book Club – Rendezvous with Rama

Tuesday, August 27th, 2013
Sci-Fi Book Club

Sci-Fi Book Club

Title: Sci-Fi Book Club
Location: MadLab
Description: A book club for fans of science fiction.
Date: 17-09-2013
Start Time: 19:00
End Time: 21:00

Rendezvous with Rama by Arthur C Clarke

This month we will be reading Rendezvous with Rama by Arthur C Clarke.

This novel won both the Hugo and Nebula awards upon its release, and is widely regarded as one of the cornerstones in Clarke’s bibliography. It is considered a science fiction classic, and is particularly seen as a key hard science fiction text.

Manchester Sci-Fi Book Club Contacts

You can contact us via Twitter @mcrsf_madlab using #mcrsf

Keep up to date with Manchester Sci-Fi book club posts at Madlab

We also have a group on Google which we would encourage you to join.

Next Sci-Fi Book:

  • Oct 15th – Brave New World by Aldous Huxley

SciFi Books for Following Months:

  • Nov 19th – The Call of Cthulhu and Other Weird Tales by H.P. Lovecraft*

*There are several versions of this book and not all of them include the Other Weird Tales, so please try to purchase the version published 25/07/02; ISBN 13: 9780141187068, thanks!

See you next book!

SciFi Discussion – Reamde

Monday, January 21st, 2013

On Tuesday 15th January Manchester SciFi Book Club braved the cold and met up at the Madlab to discuss Reamde by Neal Stephenson. This is the second Neal Stephenson book that we’ve read, the first being Snow Crash.

Reamde is a technothriller novel by Neal Stephenson, published in 2011. The story, set in the present day, centers on the plight of a hostage and the ensuing efforts of family and new acquaintances, many of them associated with a fictional MMORPG [Massively multiplayer online role-playing game], to rescue her as her various captors drag her about the globe. Topics covered range from online activities including gold farming and social networking to the criminal methods of the Russian mafia and Islamic terrorists.

Did We Like It?

Overwhelming everyone liked it, with one exception who wasn’t sure. With a generous 1042 pages there were a few people who were unable to finish Reamde. Although it is published as one book, it does feel like it could be split into 2 or 3 separate books.

Whilst it was a little slow at first, the pace soon picked up and accelerated to through the book. It was even a little rushed at times. There was plenty of action throughout and we were surprised that it has not already been made into a film.

Character Assassination

The characters were interesting with some being more developed than others. We did feel that the manner of describing characters was an info dump or even statistics read out from Trump cards. Richard’s back story was revealed in a better way, as it evolved all the way through the story. Sometimes characters were referred to by there names and other times by their nicknames, which caused a bit of confusion.

We liked that situations in the story made some of the characters personalities change. We also liked it when Peter got shot and killed, since he was treacherous and self-serving! Although none of the characters really stood out, there were plenty of characters that we liked, such as Csongor, Sokolov, Seamus, Yuxia and Egdod. We couldn’t really identify with any of the characters, although worryingly there was something of an familiarisation with chief terrorist Jones, largely because he was British.

There were not many moments where Zula had any control over what was happening, but when she did take control her decisions were pivotal.

Is It SciFi?

No. Not only was there an absence of robots and spaceships, there was nothing relating to science or technology which is not reality. Its a thriller that is fact based. There were no giant ideas or themes, Reamde is very much about the story.

Whilst Reamde is a great story, we felt that it was a bit contrived in places, for example when the terrorist gets killed by the mountain lion, how everyone got nicely paired off and how the Jihadists happened to be living above the hackers.

We liked the effort at describing and creating the game of T’Rain, the Apostropocalipse, the different ways in which the Americans & Chinese played T’Rain and the way the bandits piggybacked on the hackers money making scheme. It was interesting how the terrorists secretly flew out of Chinese airspace and over the Atlantic to Canada. We liked the description of the culture shock for Sokolov and the Jihadists when they were in America, especially when they reached the gun aisle in the supermarket. Richard mentioning that you could enter a Walmart store in one location and then emerge from another Walmart somewhere else entirely was a little gem.

It was proposed that we rate Reamde on the basis of “How deep is your vassal network” but we ended up scoring out of 5. Reamde scored a respectable average of 3.35.

Manchester Sci-Fi Book Club Contacts

You can contact us via Twitter @mcrsf_madlab using #mcrsf

Keep up to date with Manchester Sci-Fi book club posts at Madlab

We also have a group on Google which we would encourage you to join.

Next Sci-Fi Book:

  • February 19th – Behold the Man by Michael Morcock

SciFi Books for Following Months:

  • March 19th – Neverness by David Zindell
  • April 16th – Shades of Grey by Jasper Fforde
  • May 21st – The Truth (Discworld Novel 25) by Terry Pratchett

SciFi Comic

It has been suggested that we read SciFi Comic Y:The Last Man by Brian K. Vaughan and Pia Guerra, in collaboration with the Mad Graphic Novel Group.

See you next book!