Rattle my worldview - Has a book ever changed your life?

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Re: Rattle my worldview - Has a book ever changed your life?

Postby Dust King » Sun Jul 18, 2010 9:58 am UTC

R is for Rocket by Ray Bradbury. It's a collection of short stories which just have a amazing sense of wonder to them. If you're felling depressed or down or even just bored then I highly recommend reading this, it's a collection of 15 of the most incredible stories I've ever read. Just some of the ones which have stuck with me:
-The Fog Horn: an immensely lonely story of a sea monster drawn to a fog horn on a lighthouse.
-The Rocket Man: an astronaut torn between love for his family and love of the stars, has a amazing ending.
-A Sound of Thunder: Time travel, hunting and the impact of your actions (and dinosaurs).
-The Exiles: I can't even describe this; basically about the death of scary stories and superstition.
-The Dragon: A foggy night on a lonely moor which is home to a dragon (and a great twist)
-Frost and Fire: Imagine if your life only lasted ten days from birth to death, what would you do to live just a bit longer. (this story has pulled me out of some really bad moods)
-The Sound of Summer Running: The perfect epilogue to the collection.

Just reading this collection makes me realise how amazing life is, these stories made me love reading and science, they are amazing.
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Re: Rattle my worldview - Has a book ever changed your life?

Postby Alexeon » Sun Jul 18, 2010 5:52 pm UTC

A book that has changed my life...


Well, I dont know if any book has been that dramatic for me but there are a few that impacted me more than others.

Snow Crash and Diamond Age by Neal Stephenson were both recommended by my then science teacher and Diamond Age especially changed how I think of what "high tech" really means. Those two are not as life-changing as the first book but in my mind they are like big events in my SF reading years.
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Re: Rattle my worldview - Has a book ever changed your life?

Postby jestingrabbit » Sat Jul 24, 2010 11:01 pm UTC

A couple that were pretty mind stretching for me were two by John Brunner, "The sheep look up" and "Stand on Zanzibar" which are both dystopian, the first focusing on environmentalism and the second focusing on the source of violence in our day to day lives. But really, I'd suggest anything by him. He's really great at writing a good story around two or three ideas. I'd contrast that with Huxley and Orwell, who always feel like they're beating you over the head with the ideas they want you to assimilate.

Also, Starmaker by Olaf Stapledon is a radical imagining of alternate lifeforms, and civilizations and intelligences. It ultimately ends up being a bit religious, but its purely speculative and not at all dogmatic: it proposes the existence of an immature creator who creates an infinite sequence of universes, with there being greater complexity at each step. One of the universes that is imagined has two orthogonal time directions, just to give you a taste of how far out the journey gets.
ameretrifle wrote:Magic space feudalism is therefore a viable idea.
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Re: Rattle my worldview - Has a book ever changed your life?

Postby shieldforyoureyes » Sun Jul 25, 2010 10:39 am UTC

jestingrabbit wrote:
Also, Starmaker by Olaf Stapledon is a radical imagining of alternate lifeforms, and civilizations and intelligences. It ultimately ends up being a bit religious, but its purely speculative and not at all dogmatic: it proposes the existence of an immature creator who creates an infinite sequence of universes, with there being greater complexity at each step. One of the universes that is imagined has two orthogonal time directions, just to give you a taste of how far out the journey gets.


Do you know Lem or the Strugatsky brothers? Any Stapledon fan should like them...

(I think I first heard about Stapledon from Lem writing about him.)
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Re: Rattle my worldview - Has a book ever changed your life?

Postby jestingrabbit » Mon Jul 26, 2010 12:53 pm UTC

I wasn't. Thanks for the recommendation.
ameretrifle wrote:Magic space feudalism is therefore a viable idea.
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Re: Rattle my worldview - Has a book ever changed your life?

Postby Dustin » Fri Jul 30, 2010 6:11 am UTC

1984 for a fairly stupid reason: back before I read it, I was very christian and conservative, especially sexually. I trusted the government, I bought the Christian tenets against sex outside of marriage. Winston almost drove me away in his thoughts about how he wanted to rape and murder Julia. But the portions of the book where Julia explains the anti-sex league's psychology of repressing the sex instinct so that it is redirected into fanaticism for government/religion clicked in my brain, and I just started seeing how all of my preexisting views were a stupid, hollow lie because it made such good sense in a way all of the other stuff didn't.
http://www.newgrounds.com/portal/view/531308
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