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A Dog of Flanders
A Dog of Flanders is an 1872 novel by English author Marie Louise de la Ramée published with her pseudonym "Ouida". It is about a Flemish boy named Nello and his dog, Patrasche and is set in Antwerp.
In Japan, Korea and the Philippines, the novel has been an extremely popular children's classic for decades and has been adapted into several Japanese films and anime. Since the 1980s, the Belgian board of tourism caught on to the phenomenon and built two monuments honoring the story to please East-Asian tourists. There is a small statue of Nello and Patrasche at the Kapelstraat in the Antwerp suburb of Hoboken, and a commemorative plaque in front of the Antwerp Cathedral donated by Toyota, that was later replaced by a marble statue of the two characters covered by a cobblestone blanket, created by the artist Batist Vermeulen.
- "A Dog of Flanders" | 2020-02-06 | 71 Upvotes 54 Comments
A True Story
A True Story (Ancient Greek: Ἀληθῆ διηγήματα, Alēthē diēgēmata; Latin: Vera Historia or Latin: Verae Historiae) is a novel written in the second century AD by Lucian of Samosata, a Greek-speaking author of Assyrian descent. The novel is a satire of outlandish tales which had been reported in ancient sources, particularly those which presented fantastic or mythical events as if they were true. It is Lucian's best-known work.
It is the earliest known work of fiction to include travel to outer space, alien lifeforms, and interplanetary warfare. As such, A True Story has been described as "the first known text that could be called science fiction". However the work does not fit into typical literary genres: its multilayered plot and characters have been interpreted as science fiction, fantasy, satire or parody, and have been the subject of much scholarly debate.
- "A True Story" | 2018-10-15 | 525 Upvotes 72 Comments
--All You Zombies--
" '—All You Zombies—' " is a science fiction short story by American writer Robert A. Heinlein. It was written in one day, July 11, 1958, and first published in the March 1959 issue of Fantasy and Science Fiction magazine after being rejected by Playboy.
The story involves a number of paradoxes caused by time travel. In 1980, it was nominated for the Balrog Award for short fiction.
"'—All You Zombies—'" further develops themes explored by the author in a previous work: "By His Bootstraps", published some 18 years earlier. Some of the same elements also appear later in The Cat Who Walks Through Walls (1985), including the Circle of Ouroboros and the Temporal Corps.
The unusual title of the story, which includes both the quotation marks and dashes shown above, is a quotation from a sentence near the end of the story; the quotation is taken from the middle of the sentence, hence the dashes indicating edited text before and after the title.
- "All You Zombies" | 2022-02-25 | 111 Upvotes 51 Comments
- "--All You Zombies--" | 2009-12-19 | 30 Upvotes 13 Comments
- "All You Zombies— The most craziest of the time travel paradoxes" | 2008-10-10 | 42 Upvotes 21 Comments
Bored of the Rings
Bored of the Rings is a parody of J. R. R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings. This short novel was written by Henry Beard and Douglas Kenney, who later founded National Lampoon. It was published in 1969 by Signet for the Harvard Lampoon. In 2013, an audio version was produced by Orion Audiobooks, narrated by Rupert Degas.
- "Bored of the Rings" | 2017-07-08 | 55 Upvotes 22 Comments
Bokononism: a fictional religion based on harmless untruths
Cat's Cradle is a satirical postmodern novel, with science fiction elements, by American writer Kurt Vonnegut. Vonnegut's fourth novel, it was first published in 1963, exploring and satirizing issues of science, technology, the purpose of religion, and the arms race, often through the use of black humor. After turning down his original thesis in 1947, the University of Chicago awarded Vonnegut his master's degree in anthropology in 1971 for Cat's Cradle.
- "Bokononism: a fictional religion based on harmless untruths" | 2010-07-10 | 24 Upvotes 4 Comments
Dune is a science fiction media franchise that originated with the 1965 novel Dune by Frank Herbert and has continued to add new publications up to 2017. Dune is frequently cited as the best-selling science fiction novel in history. It won the 1966 Hugo Award and the inaugural Nebula Award for Best Novel, and was later adapted into a 1984 film and a 2000 television miniseries. Herbert wrote five sequels, and the first two were presented as a miniseries in 2003. The Dune universe has also inspired some traditional games and a series of video games. Since 2009, the names of planets from the Dune novels have been adopted for the real-world nomenclature of plains and other features on Saturn's moon Titan.
Frank Herbert died in 1986. Beginning in 1999, his son Brian Herbert and science fiction author Kevin J. Anderson published a number of prequel novels, as well as two which complete the original Dune series (Hunters of Dune in 2006 and Sandworms of Dune in 2007), partially based on Frank Herbert's notes discovered a decade after his death.
The political, scientific, and social fictional setting of Herbert's novels and derivative works is known as the Dune universe, or Duniverse. Set tens of thousands of years in the future, the saga chronicles a civilization which has banned all forms of computers, or "thinking machines", but has also developed advanced technology and mental and physical abilities. Vital to this empire is the harsh desert planet Arrakis, only known source of the spice melange, the most valuable substance in the universe.
Due to the similarities between some of Herbert's terms and ideas and actual words and concepts in the Arabic language, as well as the series' "Islamic undertones" and themes, a Middle Eastern influence on Herbert's works has been noted repeatedly.
- "The Butlerian Jihad (23000)" | 2022-12-06 | 16 Upvotes 5 Comments
- "Butlerian Jihad" | 2019-02-20 | 14 Upvotes 1 Comments
Exercises in Style
Exercises in Style (French: Exercices de style), written by Raymond Queneau, is a collection of 99 retellings of the same story, each in a different style. In each, the narrator gets on the "S" bus (now no. 84), witnesses an altercation between a man (a zazou) with a long neck and funny hat and another passenger, and then sees the same person two hours later at the Gare St-Lazare getting advice on adding a button to his overcoat. The literary variations recall the famous 33rd chapter of the 1512 rhetorical guide by Desiderius Erasmus, Copia: Foundations of the Abundant Style.
- "Exercises in Style" | 2014-03-22 | 20 Upvotes 7 Comments
Last and First Men
Last and First Men: A Story of the Near and Far Future is a "future history" science fiction novel written in 1930 by the British author Olaf Stapledon. A work of unprecedented scale in the genre, it describes the history of humanity from the present onwards across two billion years and eighteen distinct human species, of which our own is the first. The book employs a narrative conceit that, under subtle inspiration, the novelist has unknowingly been dictated a channelled text from the last human species.
Stapledon's conception of history is based on the Hegelian Dialectic, following a repetitive cycle with many varied civilisations rising from and descending back into savagery over millions of years, but it is also one of progress, as the later civilisations rise to far greater heights than the first. The book anticipates the science of genetic engineering, and is an early example of the fictional supermind; a consciousness composed of many telepathically linked individuals.
In 1932, Stapledon followed Last and First Men with the far less acclaimed Last Men in London. Another Stapledon novel, Star Maker (1937), could also be considered a sequel to Last and First Men (mentioning briefly man's evolution on Neptune), but is even more ambitious in scope, being a history of the entire universe.
It is the 11th title in the SF Masterworks series.
- "Last and First Men" | 2020-02-22 | 92 Upvotes 26 Comments
Nineteen Eighty-Four: A Novel, often published as 1984, is a dystopian novel by English novelist George Orwell. It was published in June 1949 by Secker & Warburg as Orwell's ninth and final book completed in his lifetime. The story was mostly written at Barnhill, a farmhouse on the Scottish island of Jura, at times while Orwell suffered from severe tuberculosis. Thematically, Nineteen Eighty-Four centres on the consequences of government over-reach, totalitarianism, mass surveillance, and repressive regimentation of all persons and behaviours within society.
The story takes place in an imagined future, the year 1984, when much of the world has fallen victim to perpetual war, omnipresent government surveillance, historical negationism, and propaganda. Great Britain, known as Airstrip One, has become a province of a superstate named Oceania that is ruled by the Party who employ the Thought Police to persecute individuality and independent thinking. Big Brother, the leader of the Party, enjoys an intense cult of personality despite the fact that he may not exist. The protagonist, Winston Smith, is a diligent and skillful rank-and-file worker and Party member who secretly hates the Party and dreams of rebellion. He enters a forbidden relationship with a co-worker, Julia.
Nineteen Eighty-Four has become a classic literary example of political and dystopian fiction. Many terms used in the novel have entered common usage, including Big Brother, doublethink, thoughtcrime, Newspeak, Room 101, telescreen, 2 + 2 = 5, prole, and memory hole. Nineteen Eighty-Four also popularised the adjective "Orwellian", connoting things such as official deception, secret surveillance, brazenly misleading terminology, and manipulation of recorded history by a totalitarian or authoritarian state. Time included it on its 100 best English-language novels from 1923 to 2005. It was placed on the Modern Library's 100 Best Novels, reaching No. 13 on the editors' list and No. 6 on the readers' list. In 2003, the novel was listed at No. 8 on The Big Read survey by the BBC. Parallels have been drawn between the novel's subject matter and real life instances of totalitarianism, mass surveillance, and violations of freedom of expression among other themes.
- "1984" | 2013-06-09 | 10 Upvotes 2 Comments
Ready Player One – what Oculus + FB will look like?
Ready Player One is a 2011 science fiction novel, and the debut novel of American author Ernest Cline. The story, set in a dystopia in 2045, follows protagonist Wade Watts on his search for an Easter egg in a worldwide virtual reality game, the discovery of which would lead him to inherit the game creator's fortune. Cline sold the rights to publish the novel in June 2010, in a bidding war to the Crown Publishing Group (a division of Random House). The book was published on August 16, 2011. An audiobook was released the same day; it was narrated by Wil Wheaton, who was mentioned briefly in one of the chapters.Ch. 20 In 2012, the book received an Alex Award from the Young Adult Library Services Association division of the American Library Association and won the 2012 Prometheus Award. A film adaptation, screenwritten by Cline and Zak Penn and directed by Steven Spielberg, was released on March 29, 2018.
- "Ready Player One – what Oculus + FB will look like? " | 2014-03-26 | 31 Upvotes 16 Comments