Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Some term definitions

Science fiction - fiction usually set in the future or in an alternate history, dealing with the effect of the future, technology, or some combination of both. Often abbreviated as "sci-fi" or called "speculative fiction."

Dystopia - fiction set in a world that is designed to be oppressive/totalitarian/unlivable as possible.

Utopia - fiction set in a world that is designed to be as perfect as possible. Infrequently written today.

Post-holocaust - fiction set in a world that has experienced a disaster or catastrophe. Examples include the aftermath of nuclear war, a plague, volcanic eruption, ozone depletion, or anything else that causes calamity. A post-holocaust story is not necessarily a dystopian one, although the two may overlap.

Post-holocaust fiction is commonly labeled as dystopian today, but post-holocaust scenerios often create a world that is grim on the face. People attempting to live and make the best of such a scenerio isn't a dystopia, but people who are using the disaster as an excuse to seize power are.

As another note, I'd rather cut off my own ears than reduce a book to a rating. I write the review and tell you what's good and what isn't.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Why dystopian fiction?

It's not something a lot of people understand. "Your favorite science fiction genre is what?" But it's true. For years, I've devoured every book I could find that is either dystopian or post-holocaust. People often assume this is a morbid fascination, and in several ways it is. I do like reading about when things go very wrong in one way or another. My primary interest, however, isn't on what goes wrong. It's about what happens to people in the disaster and how they react.You see the best of people and the worst, and that's what I keep coming back to.