BERKS! mah favorite


What books are you reading? What do you love? What’s good? Got some authors to recommend? I friggin’ love books, let’s talk books.

Let’s be friends on goodreads too:

I just finished reading “Brave New World”. Since I never read any of the “summer reading” books in high school, I’m making up for that now. In the past decade or so I’ve read stuff like 1984, Fahrenheit 451, The Foundation Trilogy, To Kill a Mockingbird, 2001: A Space Odyssey, Agatha Christie books, etc. I highly recommend stuffing yourself full of the cultural classics.

My thoughts on Brave New World, don't click if you don't want spoilers.

This was a lot different than I thought it would be. I knew it was dystopian fiction, but I never thought it’d be about eugenics and morals that are completely opposite to what we have now (like: everyone belongs to everyone). It was a really interesting take on the future.

It also abruptly ended with the Savage’s suicide. I wasn’t expecting that, but it’s fitting.

I don’t have much more to say. I didn’t find it profound or anything. It’s just one dude’s scary take on the future.

I also very much love the Asian Saga by James Clavell. Chronologically, it starts with Shogun, one of my favorite books of all time. Here’s a list of all of them. I’ve just got to read Whirlwind and then I’ll be done. Some of the books were less than great, like Tai-pan and Gai-jin. I’m surprised at how much I loved King Rat, though.

Okay, share, share! Let’s book it!


Woah, this is some good timing on this thread. I went down to a really good used book store yesterday and bought a few books from the Shannara series By Terry Brooks. I read some of the series out of order in High School and really enjoyed it, so I decided I’d actually look up the book order and read them the right way.

Other than that I’ve been listening to Levar Burton Reads. It’s a podcast where Levar Burton reads short stories and I’ve enjoyed every episode so far!


I’m a big fan of Sam Hughes/qntm. Probably my favorite works of his are some of his short stories - particularly The Difference and his Antimemetics Division series on the SCP wiki. I recently reread his novel Ed, though, which was just as great as the first time I read it. Highly recommend all of his stuff, especially if you’re into harder sci-fi!


Yah Danny, I really love Levar Burton Reads! The most recent one about the two kindergarteners going to a different world and eating a weird candy bar is a little perplexing since Levar said, “this story is definitely not for children” before he started. It seemed tame enough, but


Is the story an allegory for child abduction?

I just bought the book that the story came from, looking forward to it!

I finished The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway a few days ago. My first Hemingway story, and a great one to start with. I always got the feeling that older or very classic books are inherently more difficult to read (either because of the language used or the writing style), but this book was none of that. Very easy read, very very good story. The characters really felt alive~

I’ll have to check out Ed, Roland! What would you consider “harder” sci-fi? Isaac Asimov stuff?


Unfortunately, I haven’t actually read that much sci-fi, so I don’t have too many points of reference. If you’ve read anything by Alastair Reynolds, or seen Interstellar, those are good examples of what I think of as harder sci-fi. And from what I know about Isaac Asimov I think he would qualify?

Specific to Sam Hughes, I think what makes him “hard sci-fi” to me (and what I really like about his work) is that he’s really interested in working out the details of the futuristic technologies in his books and he tries to avoid making stuff that’s too fantastical. So, for example, he’s written a fair number of stories involving time travel and all of the time travel systems he writes are always completely internally consistent - there’s no way to cause any paradoxes, no killing your own father, etc. And he tends go into those details (or at least bring them up) in his books. He’s also really good at taking those technologies and then working out interesting consequences of the way they work.


Ah nice, okay I definitely like that kind of stuff!