Hot answers tagged

114

This is almost definitely Ringworld by Larry Niven. The mountain in question appears strange to Louis and company because it's so big, and it's located in the middle of the ring, while most of the mountains are part of the ringwall. "That's the biggest tanj mountain I ever saw in my life." "Louis!" He had spoken too softly. "A mountain!" he ...


38

This sounds like the Retief series of books by Keith Laumer. Jame Retief begins the series as a junior diplomat working for the Corps Diplomatique Terrestrienne (CDT). His boss is Ben Magnan, a stuffy, cowardly, paper-pusher who is usually aghast at Retief's more muscular approach to "diplomacy." The usual antagonists were the Groaci, semi-insectoid ...


25

Sounds like the 1966 book Colossus, by D F Jones. The Americans create a supercomputer to run the national defenses, but it discovers an equivalent Russian computer, links with it, and takes over the world.


24

The Chronicles of Solace Series, by Roger MacBride Allen This is a series of three novels: The Depths of Time (2000) The Ocean of Years (2002) The Shores of Tomorrow (2003) Wormholes — separated by both space and time — provide the framework for the interstellar travel network. A carefully-regulated combination of instantaneous wormhole jumps, long ...


23

Probably Those Who Hunt the Night, by Barbara Hambly (1988). Aside from my memory, I see that Wikipedia describes it thus in part: The 20th century is just under way, and somebody is killing the vampires of London. Against the wishes of his fellow undead, Simon Ysidro, oldest of the London vampires, seeks the assistance of Oxford professor James Asher, ...


15

This is likely Greg Egan's Quarantine. Quoting from the Wikipedia summary: The novel is set in the near future (2034–2080), after the solar system has been surrounded by an impenetrable shield known as the Bubble, presumably by an extraterrestrial civilization for unknown reasons. The Bubble permits no light to enter the solar system, and as a ...


13

I wonder if this is Night Walk by Bob Shaw. It has the problems with hyperspace that you mention: In the first century of interstellar exploration Earth alone dispatched some forty million robot probes, of which less than two hundred chanced to make their way back. Of that number, exactly eight had found usable planetary systems. Not one of the handful ...


11

This is Chip Mitchell: The Case of the Stolen Computer Brains (and sequels) by Fred D'Ignazio. Found it by searching variations of book series + computer + "boy named Chip" (thanks FuzzyBoots!) The submarine problem is basically as I remembered it, the robot's name is Herm (for Hermes V), and the front cover was as both FuzzyBoots and I remembered it (...


10

Partial match for Raymond Feist's "Magician", the opening book of the Riftwar Saga. That also starts with a boy running, but not because he is terribly late. He is trying to outrun bad weather. Along the way he finds shelter in a mage's cottage, after which the mage makes him his apprentice. The boy is terrible at doing magic however. Partial match, ...


10

This is almost certainly Stanisław Lem’s The Futurological Congress. From the Wikipedia summary: The professor then gives Tichy a flask of "up'n'at'm, one of the vigilanimides, a powerful countersomniac and antipsychem agent. A derivative of dimethylethylhexabutylpeptopeyotine". With his first sniff of up'n'at'm, Tichy watches as the ...


9

Committee of the Whole by Frank Herbert. Previously identified in Looking for story about man on televised trial, presents plans for laser gun The main character is William Custer. He is called to a hearing in Washington: With an increasing sense of unease, Alan Wallace studied his client as they neared the public hearing room on the second floor of the ...


9

I'm rewriting this answer, because based on a speed-read, this is definitely Fade-Out by Patrick Tilley. It was first published in 1975, which fits your time frame, and at over 400 pages the paperback was fairly substantial for paperbacks of the era. An alien ship arrives in Earth orbit, temporarily wiping out all shortwave radio broadcasts and radars. ...


8

This is The Language of Stones (1999) by Robert Carter. The Realm is an England that is still-magical. Legendary beasts still populate its by-ways. It is a land criss-crossed by lines of power upon which standing stones have been set as a secret protection against invasion. But the power of the array was broken by the Slavers who laid straight roads ...


7

This could be The Edge of Beyond - the fifth novel in Captain W. E. Johns' (yes, that Captain W. E. Johns) Professor Brane series. The theme of the series as a whole matches your description of a professor building a spaceship and taking a group to Mars. This plot summary describes a scene that sounds close to the one you remember about Martians using a ...


6

With help of the The Internet Speculative Fiction Database I've found the answer: it is the book "Robinson Dello Spazio" (Space Robinson) from 1970, which I had read in the dutch translation "Noodlanding op de maan" (Emergency landing on the moon) from 1973. The author is Gianni Padoan. Apparently it has never been translated to English, only to Dutch and ...


6

The book is "The Changeling Plague" (2003) by Syne Mitchell. After Mahn's disease ravages the population, viral engineering, which created it, is prohibited by the Beijing Treaty. Money still talks, though, and wealthy cystic fibrosis patient Geoffrey Allen obtains an untested viral treatment that seems to work perfectly. Then his associates fall ill and ...


6

The Trilogy of Two (2015) by Juman Malouf? From Goodreads: Identical twins Sonja and Charlotte are musical prodigies with extraordinary powers. Born on All-Hallows-Eve, the girls could play music before they could walk. They were found one night by Tatty, the Tattooed Lady of the circus, in a pail on her doorstep with only a note and a heart-shaped ...


6

Attack of the Tyrannosaurus by Rex Stone. The Google Books summary says: Tom and Jamie can't believe their luck when they find a secret entrance to a prehistoric world filled with dinosaurs! The first dinosaur they meet is a friendly wannanosaurus. It eats the fruit from super-stinky ginkgo trees. But soon, Tom and Jamie meet a much less friendly dino: ...


6

To pick up on DavidW and Alith's comments this does sound like The White Order by L. E. Modesitt. The protagonist is a boy called Cerryl. After his father is killed by a white (Chaos) mage he is sent away to be apprenticed to Tellis, the scrivener, for his own protection. It is then that he realises he has magic powers. The light bending is quite a minor ...


6

Perhaps "A Swiftly Tilting Planet" by Madeleine L'Engle? Charles Wallace is traveling in time with a unicorn, named Gaudior, to try to save the world from a mad dictator who is close to starting a nuclear war. At each point in time where he stops, he gets somehow put into a person in that time, living that person's life but able to somehow influence things....


5

The Human Division was initially released as a set of 13 chapbooks. I assume he's talking about the covers for each of those chapbooks, which you can see in this gallery; they are all credited to John Harris. Here are the first 2 chapbook covers as an example of the artwork: It appears that prints of some of these may be available from the website of his ...


5

Multiface by Mark Adlard (Number 3 in the TCity series) looks like a possibility. Synopsis: Down endless Stahlex corridors stream soulless remnants of our world. The Work Project has wrought massive change in the lives of TCity's drone-like citizens. As bees in a mammoth, man-made hive, the 'workers' have gained a sense of purpose... an illusion ...


5

There are probably a number of books that might fit this description. However, the one that immediately jumped to mind for me was Slan by A. E. van Vogt. It concerns a boy with an invention that lets him shoot energy beams; however, his (telepathic) type is being hunted by the government, and he gets involved in both violence and intrigue. The plot ...


5

Apparently Stranger from the Depths, by Gerry Turner, which has been identified here in the past, by "John S" back in 2014: Identify Book with Intelligent Aquatic Creature over Yellow Hypnotic Swirl on Cover Found the answer on What's That Book. Descriptions of the book: "After sleeping for thousands of years the last survivor of a lost civilization ...


5

This is The Garden of Unearthly Delights(1995) by Robert Rankin, a novel about the world moving beyond the "age of reason" into an age where magic exists and powerful wizards rule the world. The main character is tasked by one of the wizards, the aptly named McGuffin, to retrieve a magical item from his arch enemy. On his way through the dramatically ...


4

Could this be Stanislaw Lem's The Star Diaries, more specifically 'The Eleventh Voyage'? By the way, Lem’s story ends with the protagonist’s discovery that the robot planet contains no real robots, but only human agents dressed up as robots, all sent in disguise to infiltrate the ranks of the Magnificans. Having betrayed their humanity, they all act like ...


4

I have a feeling this could be one of the books in the Serpentwar Saga by Raymond E. Feist. It is possibly the first book 'Shadow of a Dark Queen' Erik saw they were out on the tip of the southern harbor breakwater, a long finger of rocks built up to prevent tidal flow interfering with shipping in the harbor. Calis motioned and each man fell into line. ...


4

Unremembered (2013) by Jessica Brody? The girl is named Seraphina, not Sarah, though the names are close. A couple reviews mention her as "Sera", hence the recollection, I guess. From Amazon: When Freedom Airlines flight 121 went down over the Pacific Ocean, no one ever expected to find survivors. Which is why the 16-year-old girl discovered floating ...


4

While not fitting your full description, Invasion from Below the Earth by Philip Curtis sounds somewhat like this. To address each of your details: A guy found a creature The box was so clear, it seemed to be made of glass. And inside it, sitting at some kind of control center, was a creature. (p. 25) An amphibian race The race is not quite ...


3

Is it A Wizard of Earthsea by Ursula K. Le Guin? I suggest it because I read it for the first time about 15 or so years ago when I was also very much into Harry Potter. I distinctly recall a scene where the main character is running through forests/rocky outcroppings several times, both to meet a mentor and to escape a shadow monster. From what I can recall,...


Only top voted, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible