Ursula Le Guin's best?

Discussion in 'Ursula K Le Guin' started by Jayaprakash Satyamurthy, Oct 27, 2004.

  1. Nesacat

    Nesacat The Cat

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2006
    Messages:
    3,340
    Location:
    Curiosity was framed. Ignorance killed the cat.
    The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas wins hands down for short story and is up there on my top 10 list of short stories along with Shirley Jackson's Lottery and Ray Bradbury's Foghorn.

    As for novels, I'd have to go with the Earthsea Quartet. I've read them several times over the years and they still bring a great deal of joy. She had wonderful characters and developed them very well indeed and of course there were the dragons.
    :)
     
  2. j d worthington

    j d worthington Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 9, 2006
    Messages:
    13,915
    Nice to see someone mention "The Ones Who Walk Away From Omelas"... Very good story, and one that quite fittingly led off (with Ellison's "I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream") Leonard Wolf's massive Complete Book of Terror.
     
  3. The Wanderer

    The Wanderer Zelazny's Worlds

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2007
    Messages:
    240
    Location:
    In Shadow
    The 'Left Hand of Darkness' and 'The Disposessed' the second of which is one of my 10 best Science Fiction Novels, a true masterpeice

    I enjoyed Earthsea and shall read it again sometime
     
  4. Fried Egg

    Fried Egg Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2006
    Messages:
    3,452
    The Earthsea trilogy is one of my favourite Fantasy stories I've ever read.

    I loved the dispossessed and the left hand of darkness but I think that planet of exile and city of illusions deserve mentions too.
     
  5. Robert M. Blevins

    Robert M. Blevins Adventure Books

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2004
    Messages:
    136
    Location:
    When I'm not editing or writing, I enjoy fishing,
    'The Lathe of Heaven' is my personal favorite. They made a low-to-medium budget film from the book starring James Caan as the psychiatrist.

    The movie stunk, basically. In order to make a film from a book with the huge concept of 'Lathe', you need Steven Speilberg or forget about it...
     
  6. j d worthington

    j d worthington Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 9, 2006
    Messages:
    13,915
    Actually, the earlier film, made for PBS, is quite good (though not a literal adaptation of the book), and, despite the quite limited budget (and therefore, limited special effects) had an enormous amount going for it as a thought-provoking and eerily effective piece. The performances by Bruce Davidson and Kevin Conway, especially, were quite notable.

    The Lathe of Heaven (1980) (TV)
     
  7. HardScienceFan

    HardScienceFan 'what to eat' fan

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2007
    Messages:
    1,912
    Location:
    sometimes the Answer is right under your nose how
    I have fond memories of these three AND 'Rocannon's world'
    Uhhmmm I've yet to read Always coming home*probably never will*,would value the opinion of LeGuin readers on that one
     
  8. j d worthington

    j d worthington Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 9, 2006
    Messages:
    13,915
    Always Coming Home... Not gone through that one since it first came out. If you can find the original, with the cassette recording of the music and such, it enhances the effect considerably, I think. Much drier than others of her work, but I quite liked it... and felt it had an interesting depth (I might feel completely differently at this late date....)
     
  9. isacked

    isacked Member

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2006
    Messages:
    16
    I have only read a few of them, but the short story 'Omelias' was the one that affected me most. I read it when I was 15, and I was in an elite, snobbish school then. It made me think about what we will sacrifice to have our privileges/ wealth

    I think the effect of an author is also correlated with age/ life experience of the reader. Certain stories are more effective at certain times.
     
  10. CBellenis

    CBellenis Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 17, 2007
    Messages:
    68
    The Disposessed is one of my all time favourite novels. and The Left Hand of Darkness is also very thought compelling.

    I found the Lathe of Heaven too nihilistic (If I remember it right)

    Can anyone help me with the one she wrote about people being male at birth, becoming female in their late 20s? It was fascinating in the same way as LHoD as it questions sex and gender roles.
     
  11. HardScienceFan

    HardScienceFan 'what to eat' fan

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2007
    Messages:
    1,912
    Location:
    sometimes the Answer is right under your nose how
    almost a repeat of earlier post,so I deleted it
     
  12. Connavar

    Connavar Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2007
    Messages:
    8,326
    I saw Left Hand of Darkness in the library today.

    I think i will start with it as my first book of her. Hope its not a bad choice for the first book.
     
  13. brunnerpulpishism

    brunnerpulpishism New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2007
    Messages:
    1
    I realllllllly liked Planet of Exile. It was a wonderful, short, and carefuly constructed story on an interesting planet with 15 year winters and 60 earth year years!
     
  14. Robert M. Blevins

    Robert M. Blevins Adventure Books

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2004
    Messages:
    136
    Location:
    When I'm not editing or writing, I enjoy fishing,
    'The Left Hand of Darkness' is a good choice for a LeGuin read. Also, 'The Lathe of Heaven'.

    Escape Velocity Magazine is doing an interview with Ms LeGuin that will be appearing in the April, 2008 issue.
     
  15. GOLLUM

    GOLLUM Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2005
    Messages:
    9,044
    Location:
    Australia
    I'll second Robert's call. Left Hand Of Darkness is a cllassic novel! It won both the Hugo and Nebula.

    You must read Earthsea quartet and following books!
     
  16. gully_foyle

    gully_foyle Here kitty kitty kitty!

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2007
    Messages:
    1,260
    Location:
    Brisbane, Queensland
    I have only read The Left Hand of Darkness and The Lathe of Heaven, both are very powerful books. I agree with the sentiment that Lathe is PKDickian in its execution.
     
  17. The Procrastinator

    The Procrastinator 1 Candlepower Brain

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2008
    Messages:
    947
    Location:
    Why do people apostrophise plural's? Is it capital
    Le Guin's best...a tough one! I have to plump for Lathe of Heaven. That one just gets better and more interesting with every reread, for me. Mind you, the Dispossessed and Left Hand of Darkness are very close also-rans.
     
  18. zoran

    zoran Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2008
    Messages:
    55
    Well, it's probably because it was my first Ursula's book, but "Earthsea" is my favorite-
     
  19. Quokka

    Quokka wandering

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2005
    Messages:
    1,403
    I was about to post a reply when I noticed I already had a few years ago (in fact it must have been almost my first post) lol. So from then to now all I can say is I'm an even bigger fan. You know how sometimes an author just seems to click with what you like, well for me Le Guin is that.

    I'd like to go back an re-read the Earthsea books as I haven't read them since I was very young and I'll be looking into the full Hainish Cycle for years to come but for me The Dispossessed is still a favourite.

    The Winds Twelve Quarters is also a nice short story collection, it includes The Ones Who Walk Away From Omeleas and several others well worth a read.
     
  20. Alurny

    Alurny -sleepy-

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2006
    Messages:
    238
    I finished earthsea trilogy this morning and it was brilliant.
     
Loading...

Share This Page

Loading...