17 of the Most Literary Science Fiction Novels

M. Robert Gibson

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I've just come across this article. It's from 2013 so it may have been posted before, but I can't find any mention of it

I'm ashamed to say I've only read two of the mentioned novels :oops:
 

dask

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Haven’t read any of them, never heard of at least five, but Ubik has been on my TBR for decades and remember Kindred receiving good reviews when it came out.
 

tinkerdan

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I've read a few, but not all of them.
I'm surprised that considering what is in that list that Gravity's Rainbow by Thomas Pynchon did not make the cut.
I'd put it right there with Dhalgren any day.
The ones I have read
Ubik
The Left Hand of Darkness
The Handmaid's Tale
Slaughterhouse-Five
The Time Traveler's Wife
Kindred
The Glass Bead Game
Dhalgren
Solaris

So, about half.
Plus
Gravity's Rainbow
 

Dave

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I've read five of those:

Ubik
The Road
Slaughterhouse-Five
The Time Traveler's Wife
Never Let Me Go


All good and very readable.

(On the other hand, I gave up on Gravity's Rainbow about 1/3 of the way through).
 

Randy M.

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I've read,
The Left Hand of Darkness
The Handmaid's Tale
Slaughterhouse-Five
The Road

and thought they were all very good. There are a couple I haven't heard of, Super Sad True Love Story and The Self-Reference Machine.

Zone One, Ubik & Solaris are on the TBR and aside from those, I don't think I'd add any of the others.
 

Robert Zwilling

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I read:
Ubik
Slaughterhouse-Five
The Glass Bead Game
Dhalgren

I hadn't heard of several of them.
I read all 6 from the required reading list, 7 when you count "just about any Jules Verne Book."
I never thought of The Glass Bead Game as science fiction. I put Herman Hesse in a class by himself.
 

hitmouse

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Read two : le Guin and Vonnegut. Could not get into Glass Bead Game, read lots of PKD but somehow not Ubik.

i have a basic problem with people who want to contrive an issue between lit fiction and sf and who then seem surprised when the supposed boundaries blur. This is point scoring between genres which has no relevance to my consumption or ehat I actually think of a book. I have a similar issue with the hard sf v everything else argument. Maybe I am just an old curmudgeon.
 

Vince W

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I've only read two in that list, Vonnegut, and LeGuin. I've had UBIK and Dhalgren on my shelf for years but haven't read them yet. I don't have much interest in any of the others.
 

Finch

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I never thought the science fiction I was reading was classified as literary. I'm not sure I understand the classification. A list is always a personal thing and this one is interesting. I have read most of the book on this list. I would say most of the books will divide the critics. Books like the Glass bead Game and Solaris are highly rated but actually boring to read
 

BAYLOR

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On list if read

Slaughterhouse 5 by Kurt Vonnegut
Solaris by Stanislaw Lem

Ive tried read to read Dahlgren two or three times, I don't get very far because the book is incomprehensible.

UB1K by Phillip K Dick I have but haven't gotten around to reading yet.
 

farntfar

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Well I've read
The left hand of darkness (and the dispossessed)
The Handmaid's Tale
(on the advice of @Parson. Thank you.!)
Slaughterhouse 5
The Timetraveller's wife.
Never let me go.


all with a great deal of pleasure/satisfaction.

And I've planned to read Ubik and Solaris, but not yet got round to it.

I never classified them as literary as such. Just very good books.
So now a have another list to complete, if they're all as good (~literary) as those 5.
 

BAYLOR

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PKD at the top of the list? He's a significant name in sci-fi, but I wouldn't have called him "literary". His style is pretty pulpy.
He did get includes in Library of America editions. Usually given t writer of liberty significance.
 
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