The SF Masterworks is a series of science fiction books published by Orion through its imprints Millennium and Gollancz. The idea was to bring the best out of print titles back into circulation so they could be enjoyed by new generations of readers. The series features some excellent books and some really great covers – two factors that make them extremely collectible.
Many of the books in the series were already in our database, as winners and nominees for the awards we cover, and the remainder has now been added to bring us to a total of 73. I’ve also gone in and replaced all the existing book covers with the Masterwork covers to complete the set. We’ve built a SF Masterworks page to display them all together so you can easily see how many you’ve read. Sounds like a good reading challenge to me. I’ve only read 11 from the list so far but I found that I already had 7 more on my reading list.
The folks at Orion really like Philip K. Dick. There are 14 PKD books in the series – far more than any other author – but you’ll find many other greats in the list like Alfred Bester, Arthur C. Clarke and Robert Silverberg to name a few. I’m also excited to be adding many new authors including H.G. Wells to our database. The Time Machine and The War of the Worlds, The First Men in the Moon and The Invisible Man all pre-date the awards by many years but remain among the most familiar classics of the genre.
Take a look at the list and let us know what you think. How does this list compare to the awards? How many have you read? I’ll be adding more lists going forward to complement and fill in some of the gaps from our awards coverage. For next week I’m already working on the companion Fantasy Masterworks list – to cover both sides of the SF/F aisle. What other lists should we consider?