Wednesday, June 01, 2011

Is grown up fantasy and science fiction making a comeback?

Another interesting observation from my visit to the local library last night is that the shelf space dedicated to fantasy and science fiction is growing. I have also noticed the same thing happening in my local bookshops.

A few years back I was concerned to see that  my favourite genre seemd to have fallen out of favour and what little shelf space was dedicated to fantasy was given over almost entirely to Harry Potter and the deluge of Teenage Vampire novels. While some of the young adult stuff is very good I don't want to spend the rest of my life reading about teenagers so it is very refreshing to see George Martin, Ian Banks, Alastair Reynolds and their ilk being displayed prominently again and pushed heavily. Patrick Rothfuss appears to be the current ascending star and I am half way through "The Name of The Wind" myself.

Perhaps the millions who grew up on Harry Potter have grown up and are looking for more mature fantasy?

PS. Originally the post title referred to "Adult Fantasy and Science Fiction" except it sounded like I am talking about elf porn. Is there a better term to describe F&SF written for an adult audience?


Jayedub said...

Less Harry Potter and emo Vampires is fine by me!

Anton said...

The terms "adult" and "mature" have become synonymous with "trashy" and "lewd," haven't they?

Which book is your favorite? I might try a few, I love sci-fi shows.

mbp said...

Hi Anton.

It is hard for me to be subjective because if I go to the trouble of reading a book I generally get sucked in and love it. However if you are new to the genre here are a few suggestions that might get you started:

Veering towards the Sci fi end:

Peter Hamilton's "Nights Dawn Trilogy" is really excellent

I am also a sucker for anything written by Iain M. Banks (Culture series)

Veering towards the Fantasy end:
George RR Martin's "Song of Ice and Fire" is very good plus it's on the telly.

Probably the most complete Fantasy epic out there is The Wheel of Time by the late Robert Jordan. It is frustratingly log (13 books so far and one more to come being written posthumously) but it is worth it imho.