What are your favorites?

A couple off the top of my head:

Tolkien and Frank Herbert (of course)
Matthew Woodring Stover -- Heroes Die and Blade of Tyshall are excellent, but I haven't read Cain Black Knife yet

The Women of the Otherworld series by Kelly Armstrong is excellent if you like occult fiction (which I do)

Patricia Briggs -- I've only read her Mercy Thompson series so far, and it's very entertaining

Anne Bishop -- Kushiel's Dart and Sebastian are what I've read so far

Douglas Adams, of course

I can't remember the name of the author, but the Wayfarer's Redemption series is pretty good, if a little complicated

Umm...who else?

Jane Yolen wrote a wonderful YA series called the Pit Dragon Trilogy that I wore out when I was young.

Umm... That's what's popping into my head at the moment. What about you guys?

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Maybe it's a woman thing?

Never heard of Tepper, but I've read Le Guin a lot. The Dispossessed and The Left Hand of Darkness are excellent. And I think I listed Angela Carter as one of my favorite SF authors (although might be in another thread).
Well please do try Tepper. If you like Le Guin, Tepper will hit the spot, although she maybe gets a tad carried away with her own idealism. One of her best books, Raising the Stones poses a solar system hosting a plethora of different religions, and what happens when a 'God' emerges that, unlike all the others, actually works.
Oh, and I wasn't trying to bitch with my comment about the 'woman thing'. I was just trying to explain why I like both these authors so much.
Cheers for the Angela Carter tip -- I haven't read any of her work yet (I think).
The Modern Word has an article on Carter. I think it's a good start if you want to familiarize yourself with her works.

Tepper seems relatively unknown here in France. Only half a dozen of her works have been translated, Raising the Stones not being one of them.
Thanks for the link, Jaume. I can't believe that I've never read any of Carter's books because she sounds like just my sort of girl. She goes straight to the top of my "must read" list now.
It's a pity you can't get hold of Raising the Stones, but practically any of Tepper's books will give you a satisfying read. I'd particularly recommendThe Gate to Women's Country, Grass, or Beauty if they're available.
I haven't read all the recommendations here so I hope it hasn't been mentioned already.

The Deed of Paksenarrion by Elizabeth Moon is perhaps the best fantasy I've ever read.
I really dug Poul Anderson's "Fleet of Stars" Trilogy

Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle. I haven't found many from these two that aren't good. Whether writing singly or collaborating. The Ringworld Trilogy is one of my favorites (Niven) and "The Mote in God's Eye" (Niven and Pournelle.

Heinlein "Stranger in A Strange Land" (The terminology is a bit dated, but a great story) and "Job: A Comedy of Justice" great religious satire.

Richard K Morgan's Takeshi Kovacs Trilogy "Altered Carbon", Broken Angels" and "Woken Furies". IMO, the natural heir to William Gibson. If you like cyberpunk, Morgan's Kovacs Trilogy is excellent.

Peter F Hamilton's series that begins with Pandora's Star. Don't recall the names of the rest of the books in this series, but a fast-paced, enjoyable trip. I wouldnt bother with his "Night's Dawn Trilogy", it seems as though he had a vision of what it should be, but was never able to make it.

Neal Stephenson "Cryptonomicon" and its prequel trilogy "The Baroque Cycle"....(I'd suggest reading Cryptonomicon first however. "The Diamond Age" and "Snow Crash"....Hiro Protagonist is the name of the main character in "Snow Crash" :). His latest is "Anathem", I found it to be a great read and very thought-provoking. Heavy on philosophy, math and logic.

China Mieville "Perdido Street Station" While I'm not into fantasy, this was a strange mixture of the two.
A very unique read, I'd recommend this to anyone.

Sean McMullens "Greatwinter Trilogy" was a fun read, not too heavy but enjoyable.

Neil Gaiman has never disappointed me.

Parke Godwin's "Waiting for the Galactic Bus" is great religious and political satire. His sequel "The Snake-Oil Wars" wasnt as good, but still worth the read.

And as always....Asimov, Heinlein (yes, I mentioned him twice :), and Philip K. Dick.
BTW, I'd also throw Mark Twain's "Letters from the Earth" in here as well. More religious satire. Guess I'd classify that as fantasy. The two that are often left out, which I consider to be sci-fi are Kurt Vonnegut and Stephen King. Don't tell me that "Slaughterhouse Five" couldn't be placed in the sci-fi section along with "The Dark Tower" series.

Yeah, I know. Long list. I really did try to keep it short.
Oh, Rudy Rucker as well......:)
Since I'm older than dirt, may I suggest you go back into the dusyt corners and look up

Since I'm older than dirt may I suggest you go back into the dim, dusty shelves and look up C.L. Moore? I promise, you won't be dissapointed. Poul Anderson and Roger Zelazny are tops in my humble opinion. There are a lot of very intertaining new authors out now, but the classics are something any SFF fan would do well to discover. I found a trilogy by a female author who lives in Florida....can't remember her name, but the stories centered around a man who was part of a group of immortals who arose in ancient Ethiopia....Wait...I think her name is Tannanarive Due....something like that. I'm sure of her last name, though. Sorry I can't be more clear...I'm old, remember...lol

Otherwise, I second just about everything/everyone the rest of you have mentioned and I've even found a couple of names that are unfamiliar to me, but I will definately add to my list.

Happy reading, All
Hi y'all! I just started reading "The Edge of Reason" by Melinda Snodgrass. Dig this;

"There's a war being fought, much older than the 'war on terrorism' or our current adventures world wide, but tied to them in a dark and fundamental way...... This acient war is being waged for the spirit of humanity. I don't use the word 'soul' because it's too loaded, too charged, and it's one of thier words. If my side wins, mankind literally inherits the stars. If they win, gateways between universes will be fully opened again and the earth and all of her six billion inhabitants will enter a new Dark Age with all the attendant ignorance, superstition, suffering and death.
Our weapons are science, technology, rational thought. Their weapons are superstition, religion and... magic."

I'm only on page 100 but I hoping it keeps up the good fight. ;)
Tolkien and Adams are top of my list. I also, guiltily, enjoy Sir Terry Pratchett's "Discworld" novels, mostly those with Rincewind the Wizzzard and Death.

Ursula K. LeGuin was a favorite when I was younger, and whoever wrote "Wind in the Door"...can't remember the author's name right now.

...wow o.O just read through the other comments and see I'm in VERY good company here. Discworld ftw!!
I just went through the whole thread to make sure I wasn't repeating someone else...

I highly recommend S.L. Farrell's "Magic of..." series (Twilight, Nightfall, Dawn). His world is very interesting politically, and it also has atheist subplots - an important character is an ambassador from a reason-based culture living in a theocracy (a hell of a job!).

To address a few names I saw mentioned:
Ursula K LeGuin - her translation of the Tao Te Ching is my absolute favorite; however, I find much of her fiction hard to get through :-/
Orson Scott Card - I loved Ender's Game when I first read it in school, but it was soured for me when I got older and realized what a raging Mormon asshole Card is...
Personal favorite for me right now is George RR Martin's Song of Ice and Fire. I love series with very large, in depth worlds, especially when they are as dark and gritty as Westeros. Like Wheel Of Time (also a favorite) but less candy coated.

Also, not a particularly great series, but one I am enjoying nonetheless right now are the Temeraire books by Naomi Novik.



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