From: Living in the fair city of Melbourne, Australia
So he not only generally got science right but also got characters right. It's a rare combination in sci-fi.
Yes, indeed it is. Some of my favourites having both:
* Kim Stanley Robinson Mars saga. I think the strongest of the three is the first "Red Mars", featuring really memorable characters and plausible technology (which already exists, interestingly enough).
* "The Ender Game" by Orson Scott Card. All very hard, the only "literary license" taken there with physics is the notion of information exchange across vast distances through quantum entanglement. I loved the "Internet" depicted in the book.
* Gregory Benford's "In the Ocean of Night". Characters might not be top-notch, and the socioeconomic predictions there might make you smile (keep in mind that it's a 1970's book, and the future did indeed look very bleak back then). "Great Sky River", by the same author, is maybe better (and much darker). "Timescape" is also quite good.
* "Anathema" by Neal Stephenson. Bar the alternate universe traveling loophole license, the science there is very good. Who wants death rays when you can drop a 1 ton metal rod from orbit?
* "The Forever Peace" by Joe Haldeman. He gets right the basics of tele-operated war waging and the characters are quite remarkable.
* "A Deepness in the Sky" by Vernor Vinge. Much better - in my opinion - than the better known "A Fire Upon The Deep". Go Qeng Ho!
* David Brin and Gregory Benford's "Heart of the Comet". Great story, the license taken here deals with a 'biological computer' which allows to upload minds into them
Some where the characters and writing is weak, yet I remember them fondly:
* "Eon" by Greg Bear. A bit of a rip-off of Rendezvous with Rama, though.
* "Dragon's Egg" by Robert L. Forward. 2D characters but you'd learn a lot about stellar physics :)
Note that the notion of "hard sci-fi" is a moving target. Stuff that seemed plausible in 1983 might not sound as sensible now in 2013
PS: Gah, I just noticed that by answering I ruined the best post count ever: '1234'
< Message edited by Bletchley_Geek -- 1/11/2013 5:13:56 AM >