RECOMMENDATIONS

Fiction Search

Finding Fiction Recommendations Online

Despite the plethora of book finding websites, narrowing in on something that would be great to read next if frankly a pain in the ass.

Searching For Fiction On Amazon

If I go on to Amazon and type "science fiction books about the singularity" in the search bar the first three results are two sponsored results, a book about the end of the world, and a book about alien invasions, followed by a non fiction book about advancing technology in business. The fourth result is a book called Singularity, about the singularity. The fifth result is a book called Polar Vortex about a polar vortex. Why do I need to know the title of a book before I go on Amazon?

Searching for Fiction on Goodreads

If I go on Goodreads and type "science fiction books about the singularity" in the search bar I get zero results. If I just search "singularity" I get a non fiction book, two books with singularity in their title and a book about mormon polygamy. If I click the Listopia tab I get 30 lists that seem maybe possibly promising but I can tell just from some of the covers its not going to be real targeted as I see 1894, The Hunger Games, Ready Player One, etc.. But let's click in to a list titled "Best Technological Singularity Books Fiction or Non-Fiction". Each book on the page has a title, an author and a star rating. No synopsis, or description of any kind. This list has 65 entries, this is going to take a while. I click the first one, ok thats nonfiction. Back. Click the second one, it's called Daemon about a runaway computer process that does bad things or something. That's presumably an AI, but it's not about the Singularity. Well screw it, let's read some reviews!

Nathan says, "Awful. 'Daemon' suffers from all the usual pitfalls of the first novel: unoriginal premise, wooden dialogue, melodramatic action, clumsy exposition, sloppy resolution, inconsequential subplotting. When the author tries to be witty, he comes off as conceited; when he tries to impress with his tech-savvy, he sounds as if he's quoting from 'Popular Science' magazine. This was the worst book I've read in a while, and I'm not sure whether I want Daniel Suarez to stop writing altogether..."

Ok, so it's terrible, let's read another just in case.

aPriL says, "This book is as stunning as Dune. I give it ten stars..."

Searching for Fiction on Google

In hindsight I should have started here, why would Amazon (a book seller) or Goodreads (a book recommendation site) be even remotely as good as Google (which potentially has already blown past the Singularity and just isn't telling us). So I google "science fiction books about the singularity" and I get... 11 books about the singularity right across the top! Some are clearly non fiction, theres no reviews or ratings, but still. Right below that is ads for 4 more books on the singularity, which if you're willing to pay for the keyword it's likely your book is actually about that I suppose, but you'll forgive me for not trusting your objectivity.  Then the real results: we have a Quora post followed by 2 Goodreads lists (that look better than the one I found my way in to I suppose) and a Reddit thread.

How is any of this better than standing around a Barnes and Noble slowly thumbing through the shelves pulling out random books, glancing at the cover, maybe reading the back? Last time I did that I ended up reading a book about vampires with flower genitals. 

Science Fiction

Reviews and suggestions about some of my favorite genres of SciFi.

Online Fiction

Writing has gone online, and having expanded beyond the bound page new possibilities arise. 

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