Brain

Twenty Core SF Works About Psionics and Awesome Mind Powers Every True SF Fan Should Have On Their Shelves

As with the previous core lists, here are twenty Speculative Fiction Works about psionics and other mental gifts chosen entirely on the basis of merit and significance to the field1. No implication is intended that these are the only twenty works you should consider2.

Persons unfamiliar with one or two of the works, congratulations! You’re one of today’s Ten Thousand!


1: There are two filtering rules:

  • Only one work per author per list

  • Any given work by a particular author can appear on only one list. A given author may, however, have works on various lists but each instance of their work will be unique.

2: NO IMPLICATION IS INTENDED THAT THESE ARE THE ONLY TWENTY BOOKS YOU SHOULD CONSIDER.


Comments

  • Dan'l

    DYING INSIDE by Robert Silverberg.

    • James Nicoll

      I don't understand the point you are trying to convey.

      • Dan'l

        Simply that I missed it in skimming your list. D'oh!

  • Scott Raun

    I'll have to see about reading a bunch of these. But - no Andre Norton? I might have tossed a Liaden Universe story on the list - maybe /Conflict of Honors/ or "Changeling".

  • Ross Presser

    If we drop "On Their Shelves" from the title of this post, it becomes a list of books about "the mind powers every true SF fan should have". Which would make cons ... interesting.

    • Joel Polowin

      OCCUPANCY OF THIS ROOM BY MORE MINDS THAN THERE ARE BODIES PRESENT IS STRICTLY PROHIBITED.

  • Bernard Peek

    There are several on the list that I haven't read. There are also a couple of odd omissions. I would have expected to see one of the Darkover books on the list. Also missing is the one I would have put at the top of the list: Telepathist/The Whole Man by John Brunner,

  • Joshua

    James: Are you planning to put together a category or tag to link all the "20 Core Works" posts together?

  • Netcat

    If any given work can only be on one list, why is Zero Sum Game on two lists?

  • James Nicoll

    Because I screwed up?

  • Jakc

    I would probably throw in The Demolished Man by Bester, "Liar" by Asimov which really forms the basis for the later Robot/Foundation novels and Stranger in a Strange Land by Heinlein (who had a fascination with psionics despite his hard SF reputation)

  • Surprises Aplenty

    James, I'm new to your blog and lists but I wonder if The Wolf Bell by Shirley Rousseau Murphy should be on this list. That is to say, it would be such a list I made. It is fantasy rather than science fiction but I see you have a Deryni book here so that wouldn't disqualify it. https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/3451398-the-wolf-bell

    • James Nicoll

      I haven't read it. Added to my list of possible. Thank you!

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