There’s a meme of sorts going around, the rules to which are: “List 10 books that have stayed with you. Don’t take more than a few minutes; don’t think too hard. They don’t have to be great works, just the ones that have touched you.” The rules don’t specify fiction, but that’s how most people seem to interpret it.
Here’s my list:
- The Mote In God’s Eye. Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle.
- Protector. Larry Niven.
- Ringworld. Larry Niven.
- Iceworld. Hal Clement.
- Salem’s Lot. Stephen King.
- The Forever War. Joe Haldeman.
- All My Sins Remembered. Joe Haldeman.
- Stand On Zanzibar/The Jagged Orbit. John Brunner.
- In the Ocean of Night/Across the Sea of Suns. Gregory Benford.
- Hyperion/The Fall of Hyperion/Endymion/The Rise of Endymion. Dan Simmons.
- Arc Light. Eric L. Harry.
- Revelation Space. Alastair Reynolds.
- A Fire Upon the Deep. Vernor Vinge.
- Pandora’s Star/Judas Unchained. Peter F. Hamilton.
That’s a lot more than 10, but I’d have had to “think too hard” to cut it down to just 10.