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Navigating NPR’s 100 Best F&SF Books via Flow Chart

September 30, 2011

I saw this linked on John Scalzi’s blog, and thought it was too fun not to pass on.

A massive flow chart that navigates through NPR’s Top 100 Fantasy and Science Fiction Books at SF Signal.

Check it out.

My only advice/complaint: perhaps the flow chart should ask whether a reader enjoys the philosophical stylings of Ayn Rand before pointing them toward Goodkind’s Sword of Truth series.  A question like that would be quite in keeping with the tongue-in-cheek tone of the flow chart.

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4 Comments leave one →
  1. September 30, 2011 12:03 pm

    HAHA yes that would be an excellent question to add to the chart.

    • September 30, 2011 12:09 pm

      I imagine… if you plan to get invested in that particular series it might be a very pertinent question.

  2. October 4, 2011 6:53 pm

    I enjoyed the flowchart for what it’s worth. As for the Ayn Rand question, you ask, please elaborate. I have only read “Anthem” by Rand and first of Goodkind’s series, which I didn’t like much.

    • October 5, 2011 9:03 am

      I’m not familiar specifically with Anthem, but Rand is well-known for her “Objectivist” philosophy, which she coined. Certainly there are a lot of people who believe very strongly in Objectivism. I won’t mince words, though: I think Objectivism is a load of carnival-barking hokum – and dangerous, nihilistic hokum at that. (Apologies if you’re a devotee of the philosophy; I mean not to offend, but I feel pretty strongly about it.) It’s not evident if you’ve read only Goodkind’s first book, but Goodkind is an avid fan of Ayn Rand. The later books in the Sword of Truth series increasingly become paeans to Objectivism, such that one book in the series – Faith of the Fallen is virtually an epic fantasy rewrite of Ayn Rand’s Fountainhead. I haven’t read either (I couldn’t make it past Goodkind’s Soul of the Fire, which has a ridiculous premise, and I’ve never read any Rand book and intend not to), but I’ve read some pretty details synopses of both, and the similarities, at least at the synopsis level, are striking. All in all, it was pretty disappointing. I actually enjoyed the first book in the Sword of Truth series… but it goes downhill after that.

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