20 Science Fiction Novels That Will Change Your Life

Now that's a loaded title.

It's no secret by now that I love lists. Being subjective by nature, it's a great opportunity to compare argue, and possibly come across something that might actually (in the case of this list, anyway) "change your life."

The list comes courtesy of the better-than-I-expected Io9, a site dedicated to all things science fiction in nature. I had come across an artist's representation of the city of New Crobuzon, made popular by the excellent series of "steam punk" novels by China Mieville, of which the first, Perdido Street Station, is both on the aforementioned list and a part of my Shelf of Fame. For the curious, the picture adorns the top of this post.

You can access the list by clicking on this link. For the record, there's a lot of good stuff here, stretching from Mary Shelly's Frankenstein up to more current fare like Charles Stross' 2006 novel Glasshouse (Stross, by the way, writes some excellent Lovecraft fiction - check out The Atrocity Archives to see how Cthulhu fares in modern day England). Although it doesn't have anything by Clarke (or Heinlein, or any of the classic golden-age SF writers excepting Asimov, represented here with I, Robot), you get a pretty diverse group of well-known writers and new, more recent discoveries. Just a few I'd add to the list:

  • Orson Scott Card: Ender's Game
  • Arthur C. Clarke: Rendezvous With Rama or Childhood's End
  • John Scalzi: Old Man's War
  • Philip K. Dick: The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch
  • Theodore Sturgeon: More Than Human
Got some more suggestions? Comments? Let me know!