(urth) Book of the New Sun won the contest!

Lane Haygood lhaygood at gmail.com
Tue Aug 2 16:33:03 PDT 2011

I've read Harry Potter. Entertaining pop stuff. Well-crafted, but LeGuin's work is transcendent. Even her Earthsea novels (which are pale shadows of her SF) are better than Rowling on her best day. 

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On Aug 2, 2011, at 6:01 PM, Jerry Friedman <jerry_friedman at yahoo.com> wrote:

>> From: Marc Aramini <marcaramini at yahoo.com>
> [women SF writers of the 70s feeling dated]
>> A whole lot of 70s SF feels dated, from the  artistic efforts of Samuel Delany 
>> on down, in the same way modernism seems a bit  musty lately, or those socially 
>> conscious novels of the late 19th and early 20th  century that are many things, 
>> but are probably not artistic in the final  analysis.
>> I don't know, I always felt like the previously mentioned  Atwood was not doing 
>> exciting things in the way that more mainstream female  writers like Flannery 
>> O'Connor or Acker or even Byatt were, I felt like I'd read  1984 and other 
>> similar dystopian stuff over and over and over before when I read  some of her 
>> stuff, or LeGuin's for that matter, so tired of that weak lowest  common 
>> denominator left slanting.  Their SF in general IS too closely tied  to a 
>> didactic, pragmatic, realistic purpose, instead of the quite possibly  teenage 
>> boy aimed wow rocket ships explosions impossible science human villains  cool 
>> plot twist kind of stuff men seem to write in SF ... .  
> I'd say a lot of the most admired male authors before the 70s--Heinlein, Asimov, 
> Van Vogt (who I don't like), Anderson, Bradbury, Pohl, Kornbluth--were extremely 
> didactic, with pragmatic, realistic purposes.  Clarke might be an exception.  
> And I don't think women writers had or have any kind of monopoly on weak 
> lowest-common-denominator left, right, or libertarian slanting (though this does 
> bring up Ayn Rand...), certainly not considering the shoot-em-ups that you 
> rightly note are aimed at teenage boys.
>> I  think there is a better case for quality fantasy female authors than actual 
>> SF  for some reason (Hobb, Tanith lee, Susanah Clark, some of the gothic 
>> (southern  or otherwise) stuff, etc).  
> And, of course, Le Guin, author of the best YA fantasy ever (and I say this 
> without having read Harry Potter).
> Lee's Flat Earth books are one of my guilty pleasures.
>> but some of the works that were  selected seem like they are just recent and in 
>> people's memories now, something  that is not true of New Sun, which I would 
>> like to think deserved to  win.
> I'll go along with that, unsurprisingly.
> Jerry Friedman
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