I recently read a 2-year-old post from a school librarian who did “book tastings.” She would put her best books on tables separated by categories and invite classes of students in to “taste” them—peruse, read a bit, etc. Students carried a piece of paper with them and made lists of what they wanted to check out in the future, moving from table to table every few minutes. Cool! (I know this is probably old news for any librarians or grade school teachers out there.)
I thought I might attempt a virtual book tasting, featuring a few books from a specific category each week in a post. For our inaugural week, let’s look at a few SciFi books!
Colossus by D.F. Jones – Who doesn’t like a good computer-takes-over-the-world book? Published in 1966, Colossus is set in the 1990s. A super computer, Colossus, is designed to take over the United States nuclear arsenal, to relieve any human of having to make related decisions. What could possibly go wrong? Well, seems the Soviets have also developed a similar super computer, and Colossus requests a direct link to it. That’s when the fun really begins! If you enjoy Colossus, Jones pinned 2 follow-up novels The Fall of Colossus and Colossus and the Crab.
For more information: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Colossus_(novel)
For an excerpt: https://www.amazon.com/Colossus-D-F-Jones/dp/0425032299 and click “Look Inside”
Earth Abides by George R. Stewart – Post-apocalyptic novels have gained popularity recently, but Earth Abides, published in 1949, is much less controversial than those that people are visiting again—The Handmaid’s Tale, 1984, etc. The protagonist emerges from a secluded trip, where he experiences an illness, to find everyone dead. The interesting part of this novel is its exploration of rebuilding society (or not).
For more information: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Earth_Abides
For an excerpt: https://www.scribd.com/document/235573103/Earth-Abides-by-George-R-Stewart-excerpt
The Martian by Andy Weir—A suspenseful tale of an astronaut stranded on Mars when his crew leaves him for dead. He must use his wits to improvise and try to stay alive until a rescue can be staged. Interestingly, The Martian was originally rejected by publishers, leading Andy Weir to release it on his web site one chapter at a time. Readers asked that he release it as a Kindle book. It sold 35,000 copies in 3 months, attracting the attention of publishers. It was published in hardcover in 2014.
For more information: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Martian_(Weir_novel)
To read an excerpt: http://io9.gizmodo.com/read-an-excerpt-from-andy-weirs-space-thriller-the-ma-1495315872