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rahm_sahriv's avatar

Who are your favorite alternate history authors?

Asked by rahm_sahriv (1745points) April 2nd, 2010

I have read most of Harry Turtledove’s alternate history genre books, S.M. Stirling’s works and even Diana Gabaldon’s Jamie and Claire series (although it is more romance I find). I have enjoyed them all though and a few others. I am looking to expand my reading, so what are your favorite alternate history authors and why? Do you have any recommendations?

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13 Answers

stranger_in_a_strange_land's avatar

Harry Turtledove’s “Guns of the South” is quite good, if you overlook the lame time-machine premise. I lost interest in most of his other works though. I’m more into the speculative extrapolation genre, apocalyptic alternate futures, or pure sci-fi. Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle have done many excellent works in those fields.

Trillian's avatar

Andre Norton and Rosemary Edgehill collaborated on a great book that I enjoyed called Shadow of Albion. I googled and got a link, as I’m not clear on which genre you prefer. I’m more into alternate reality, so if you wanted to try that, Piers Anthony has a great series called The Incarnations of Immortality. Also, a bunch of authors collaborated on an awesome series called Thieves World which I think has 12 or 13 books.

janbb's avatar

Try Jack Finney’s Time and Again for a wonderful novel about travelling back a century in New York City.

stranger_in_a_strange_land's avatar

The real classic of time travel would be Mark Twain’s “A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthurs Court”. Jerry Pournelle’s “Janissaries” series is a takeoff on that theme as well.

mattbrowne's avatar

Stephen Baxter’s Voyage about a trip to Mars.

rahm_sahriv's avatar

Thanks for all the suggestions so far.

I think I read something by Larry Niven about an alien species that are elephant-like. It was awhile ago, but I remember liking it so I will look.

Alternate reality, sort of like fantasy or steampunk? Those are good genres and I do enjoy those as well.

I will look up Baxter, Pournelle, Twain, Finney and Norton and Edgehill too. Thanks again :)

Dr_Dredd's avatar

@rahm_sahriv Was that Footfall? Awesome book, if so.

rahm_sahriv's avatar

@Dr_Dredd I think so, Footfall or something with Hammer in the title… I can’t recall.

stranger_in_a_strange_land's avatar

@rahm_sahriv “Footfall” and “Lucifers Hammer” were both written by Niven and Pournelle. The elephant-like characters are in “Footfall”. “Lucifers Hammer” is an apocalyptic (comet hits the earth) survivalist scenario.

Cartman's avatar

Making History by Stephen Fry

PattyAtHome's avatar

I really liked S.M.Stirlings Island in the Sea of Time trilogy. I recommend it to anyone.

I also started reading a book about Charles Babbage’s Difference Engine being built and leading to the computer age starting with mechanical computers during the steam era in the 1800s. I didn’t really get into the book, but I think that was more because I had a lot of things going on so I didn’t have much time for reading then.

stranger_in_a_strange_land's avatar

I forgot about Harry Harrison. His “A Transatlantic Tunnel, Hurrah!” is based on the premise that that the British put down the American Revolution. The “West of Eden” series is based in prehistoric times with early man competing with highly advanced reptiles. The “Hammer and Cross” trilogy is based on the competition between Christianity and the Norse religion in medieval England, with a bit of a twist.

CodePinko's avatar

Most contemporary textbook companies.

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