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  #1  
Old 05-12-2012, 03:10 PM
A Sniveling Mess A Sniveling Mess is offline
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Any good alien invasion novels?

Recently I began a thread about historical fantasy novels;well,this is another genre that I've developed an interest in.I'd like an alien invasion-type novel that:
Is a little "creepy,"but not frightening enough to give Arnold Schwarzenegger nightmares;
includes humanoid aliens,rather than animal-like ones;
and is of any length,so long as it's interesting.
Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Last edited by A Sniveling Mess; 05-12-2012 at 03:11 PM..
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  #2  
Old 05-12-2012, 03:59 PM
Ashley Pomeroy Ashley Pomeroy is offline
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If you've got several days free, I can heartily recommend Harry Turtledove's Worldwar series, which mashes together an alien invasion, alternative history, and World War II without being a complete train wreck.
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Old 05-12-2012, 04:15 PM
A Sniveling Mess A Sniveling Mess is offline
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Originally Posted by Ashley Pomeroy View Post
If you've got several days free, I can heartily recommend Harry Turtledove's Worldwar series, which mashes together an alien invasion, alternative history, and World War II without being a complete train wreck.
It's funny that you mention that series,because actually I just ordered the first book of the series on the Internet a few days ago.Does the whole series include basically the same subjects and the same characters,or do they vary widely from book to book?I was wondering because I was afraid that,with the series being so long,the plot might get stale by the end of the last book.

Last edited by A Sniveling Mess; 05-12-2012 at 04:18 PM..
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Old 05-12-2012, 05:05 PM
Little Nemo Little Nemo is offline
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Originally Posted by JRyan35 View Post
It's funny that you mention that series,because actually I just ordered the first book of the series on the Internet a few days ago.Does the whole series include basically the same subjects and the same characters,or do they vary widely from book to book?I was wondering because I was afraid that,with the series being so long,the plot might get stale by the end of the last book.
The WorldWar series (four books) all take place over the course of just a few years (1941-1945). So the cast is pretty consistent. The Conquest series (three books) takes place from 1963 to 1964. There are many characters who are holdovers from the earlier series and some new characters but the cast within the trilogy is again consistent. The final book, Homeward Bound, is something of an epilogue to the series and is spread out over several years from 1972 to 2031.
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Old 05-12-2012, 05:09 PM
Little Nemo Little Nemo is offline
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Another alien invasion classic is Footfall by Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle. It's a single novel so you can go through it in a lot less time than Turtledove's series.
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Old 05-12-2012, 05:09 PM
Gagundathar Gagundathar is offline
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The very first instance that came to my mind was "Footfall".
In my opinion, it is probably the best written and most realistic-feeling alien invasion novel.
Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle have written many things together and this is in their top tier of great SF novels.
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Old 05-12-2012, 05:10 PM
Gagundathar Gagundathar is offline
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Ninjaed!
Argh!
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  #8  
Old 05-12-2012, 05:33 PM
A Sniveling Mess A Sniveling Mess is offline
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Hey,it looks like Little Nemo and Gagundathar posted suggestions for [I]Footfall[/I ]at almost exactly the same time.It seems like a very popular book in the alien invasion novel genre.But don't the aliens in that book look like elephants?

Last edited by A Sniveling Mess; 05-12-2012 at 05:33 PM..
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Old 05-12-2012, 05:39 PM
silenus silenus is online now
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I was going to say....

The Fithp are "baby elephants wearing disco shoes and hanging from hang-gliders" according to one eye witness of the invasion. Great book though.
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  #10  
Old 05-12-2012, 06:04 PM
Icerigger Icerigger is offline
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Childhood's End by Arthur C Clarke.
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  #11  
Old 05-12-2012, 06:10 PM
Little Nemo Little Nemo is offline
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Originally Posted by JRyan35 View Post
Hey,it looks like Little Nemo and Gagundathar posted suggestions for [I]Footfall[/I ]at almost exactly the same time.It seems like a very popular book in the alien invasion novel genre.But don't the aliens in that book look like elephants?
The aliens look like aliens. Quite frankly if you're looking for alien invasion books where the aliens look just like humans, you're probably going to end up reading in the bottom half of the genre. Better SF authors are usually going to try to make their books seem more "realistic" and that means they're often going to use non-human aliens.
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  #12  
Old 05-12-2012, 07:26 PM
The Tooth The Tooth is online now
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The War Against The Chtorr counts because fingerbabies are humanoid. That's my story and I'm sticking to it.
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Old 05-12-2012, 07:34 PM
Little Nemo Little Nemo is offline
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The War Against The Chtorr counts because fingerbabies are humanoid. That's my story and I'm sticking to it.
Anyone considering reading the Chtorr series should go in knowing that the series is incomplete and probably will remain that way. (The last book published was in 1993. The most recent update was apparently in 2004 when David Gerrold released the titles of the remaining three books. And told people to be patient.)
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  #14  
Old 05-12-2012, 07:36 PM
Andy L Andy L is online now
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If you can find a copy, you might like "Pandora's Planet" by Christopher Anvil - the alien invaders are the heroes (it's complicated)...
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  #15  
Old 05-12-2012, 08:57 PM
A Sniveling Mess A Sniveling Mess is offline
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Originally Posted by Little Nemo View Post
The aliens look like aliens. Quite frankly if you're looking for alien invasion books where the aliens look just like humans, you're probably going to end up reading in the bottom half of the genre. Better SF authors are usually going to try to make their books seem more "realistic" and that means they're often going to use non-human aliens.
Duly noted.The general consensus seems to be that it's a good book,so hopefully I'll get a chance to read it soon.Thanks for helping.
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  #16  
Old 05-13-2012, 01:02 AM
Reepicheep Reepicheep is offline
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Invasion Book One of the Secret World Chronicle by Mercedes Lackey & Steve Libby & Dennis Lee & Cody Martin

World Divided: Book Two of the Secret World Chronicle by Mercedes Lackey & Steve Libby & Dennis Lee & Cody Martin

Both of these books are based on the game City of Heros - so the major characters are "metahumans". These are fun books to while away a few afternoons they are not deep thinking invasions novels.
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  #17  
Old 05-13-2012, 01:14 AM
Evil Captor Evil Captor is offline
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I recommend Highways In Hiding by George O. Smith. An oldie but goodie. An alien space organism invades Earth and things get very, very science fictional. You can legally download it for free thanks to Project Gutenberg.
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  #18  
Old 05-13-2012, 03:52 AM
Manduck Manduck is offline
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You could read War Of The Worlds. You probably have already, but if not, you should. It's the granddaddy of them all.
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  #19  
Old 05-13-2012, 05:03 AM
Quartz Quartz is offline
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Originally Posted by Ashley Pomeroy View Post
If you've got several days free, I can heartily recommend Harry Turtledove's Worldwar series, which mashes together an alien invasion, alternative history, and World War II without being a complete train wreck.
I was not impressed by the first book.
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  #20  
Old 05-13-2012, 06:59 AM
DrFidelius DrFidelius is online now
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I was not impressed by the first book.
It suffered badly from Turtledove Bloat. I finished the series but none of the follow-ups because, hey, Nazis versus Space Lizards!
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  #21  
Old 05-13-2012, 07:39 AM
Bosda Di'Chi of Tricor Bosda Di'Chi of Tricor is offline
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You could read War Of The Worlds. You probably have already, but if not, you should. It's the granddaddy of them all.
I was going to suggest that.
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  #22  
Old 05-13-2012, 08:08 AM
Rick Rick is offline
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John Ringo's Legacy of the Aldenata series.
Four main books plus some side stories.
Very good military SF
Plus you can get all four books for free at publisher's website, Baen Books. The Wiki article has direct links for download.
http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Legacy_of_the_Aldenata
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  #23  
Old 05-13-2012, 08:48 AM
bufftabby bufftabby is offline
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Robert Silverberg's The Alien Years
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  #24  
Old 05-13-2012, 11:59 AM
Quimby Quimby is offline
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Re: Worldwar

I would stick with just the first four set in the 1940s. The quality degrades from there. The Colonization books aren't bad per se but I am not sure I would recommend them and the epilogue novel is just bad.
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  #25  
Old 05-13-2012, 12:01 PM
OtakuLoki OtakuLoki is offline
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An interesting take on the idea of an alien invasion is Roger MacBride Allen's Ring of Charon. In this book the aliens aren't arriving from anywhere else, they're already within the Solar System, it's just that humanity's actions have given the 'aliens' their wake-up signal.

This may well be outside the OP's limits for what they want to read - in a very real sense the largest part of the conflict between the humans and the 'aliens' is stunted and stalled, because neither side can easily get beyond their own preconceptions towards an accurate understanding of the nature of the other side. There are no 'alien' characters, for example, because the 'aliens' simply can't be thought of as individuals, let alone individuals that the audience could relate to.

One of the reasons I liked the book (and the follow-up, The Shattered Sphere) is that much of the plot hinges upon the protagonists answers to the questions, "What is life?" and "What is intelligence?"


I will second many of the recommendations here: Footfall, Worldwar, and The Legacy of the Aldenata (The invading Posleen are, IMNSHO simply the antagonists, not the villains of the piece. Though quite sufficient to give anyone nightmares.).

Some of my favorite books with aliens interacting with humans are post-invasion stories, where the war has been lost and the aliens have conquered. Timothy Zahn's Blackcollar books; Eric Flint and K.D. Wentworth's The Course of Empire* and The Crucible of Empire; and Gordon R. Dickson's Way of the Pilgrim.



*Link goes to the book's page in Baen eBooks' Free Library where, with the permission of publisher and authors, anyone may read online, or download, the ebook version of the volume.
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  #26  
Old 05-13-2012, 01:09 PM
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I read http://variety-sf.blogspot.com/2011/08/fred-hoyle-john-elliot-for-andromeda.html A for Andromeda (pub. 1962) so long ago I barely remember it, but it obviously made a strong impression. Warning: the link points to a synopsis which may be an unwanted spoiler.

Last edited by twickster; 05-13-2012 at 06:16 PM.. Reason: broke link for site with malware reported
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  #27  
Old 05-13-2012, 01:19 PM
Loach Loach is offline
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Originally Posted by Little Nemo View Post
Anyone considering reading the Chtorr series should go in knowing that the series is incomplete and probably will remain that way. (The last book published was in 1993. The most recent update was apparently in 2004 when David Gerrold released the titles of the remaining three books. And told people to be patient.)
Patient was over long ago. I did like the series up to that point
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  #28  
Old 05-13-2012, 02:20 PM
ExTank ExTank is offline
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John Ringo's Legacy of the Aldenata series.
Four main books plus some side stories.
Very good military SF
Plus you can get all four books for free at publisher's website, Baen Books. The Wiki article has direct links for download.
http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Legacy_of_the_Aldenata
He also co-authors the Looking Glass Series with Travis S. Taylor, which kicks off with an alien invasion when a scientists accidentally creates wormholes to "other" places, and he also has the Troy Rising series, which was partially inspired by Howard Tayler's Schlock Mercenary web comic.

Granted, the Troy Rising series never has a direct alien invasion on Earth, but the Horvath do KE strike three large cities by way of saying "High!" And then park a battlecruiser in orbit and say, "Nice planet you got there, monkey boys. It'd be a real shame if a rock or something dropped on it. Now, in exchange for our benevolent protection, let's talk about your stockpiles of heavy metals..."
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  #29  
Old 05-13-2012, 02:34 PM
Ethilrist Ethilrist is online now
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Genesis. The Earth was a peaceful, pastoral planet and then humans just showed up overnight, took over and started trashing the place.

In honor of Mother's Day: My mom kept the family bible "on the shame shelf as the Oz books, with all the other fantasy fiction" (her words).
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  #30  
Old 05-13-2012, 03:35 PM
Archergal Archergal is offline
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Originally Posted by Little Nemo View Post
Another alien invasion classic is Footfall by Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle. It's a single novel so you can go through it in a lot less time than Turtledove's series.
This thread prompted me to go find the ebook so I can re-read it. Baen has it, DRM-free.
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  #31  
Old 05-13-2012, 03:53 PM
BrainGlutton BrainGlutton is online now
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Most instances listed so far -- Worldwar, Footfall -- involve non-humanoid invaders. "Humanoid" is quite a restriction in this genre.

How about Invasion of the Body Snatchers? The Pod People are humanoid-by-imitation, that's why they're scary.

Last edited by BrainGlutton; 05-13-2012 at 03:53 PM..
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  #32  
Old 05-13-2012, 04:04 PM
Little Nemo Little Nemo is offline
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How about Invasion of the Body Snatchers? The Pod People are humanoid-by-imitation, that's why they're scary.
In that genre, I'd also suggest The Puppet Masters by Robert Heinlein.
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  #33  
Old 05-13-2012, 04:10 PM
TonySinclair TonySinclair is offline
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Originally Posted by Little Nemo View Post
Another alien invasion classic is Footfall by Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle. It's a single novel so you can go through it in a lot less time than Turtledove's series.
IMO Niven has written at least two better invasion stories than that, namely "World of Ptavvs" and "Protector."

And just seeing the title of this thread made me decide to read Heinlein's "Puppet Masters" again.

Last edited by TonySinclair; 05-13-2012 at 04:11 PM.. Reason: who the fuck knows how to spell "ptavv"?
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  #34  
Old 05-13-2012, 06:11 PM
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I read A for Andromeda (pub. 1962) so long ago I barely remember it, but it obviously made a strong impression. Warning: the link points to a synopsis which may be an unwanted spoiler.
I got a malware warning from Chrome on that page.
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  #35  
Old 05-13-2012, 06:49 PM
Andy L Andy L is online now
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I got a malware warning from Chrome on that page.
How appropriate!
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  #36  
Old 05-13-2012, 06:58 PM
aruvqan aruvqan is offline
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This thread prompted me to go find the ebook so I can re-read it. Baen has it, DRM-free.
Baen doesn't believe in DRM, nothing they sell has DRM. That is why they get my money. Fictionwise can burn in hell. [Fictionwise has a bad habit of unlisting books, or whatever you call it. I bought 20ish Pratchett novels from them, and they no longer list Pratchett at all. Thankfully I backed them up to cd, memory stick and external HDD ...]
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  #37  
Old 05-13-2012, 07:39 PM
Battle Pope Battle Pope is offline
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Good idea for a thread, I love a good alien invasion story.

One to avoid: (this was posted by me on another board in a thread discussing the worst books we had ever read, prior to this my vote was for Ice Station by Matthew Reilly)

Quote:
Just found a new one:

Battle Earth by Nick S. Thomas.

Now I wasn't expecting much for $3 for the Kindle edition but I got even less!

First the title: Battle Earth......reminds me of something else......Battle Earth....Battle Earth......Battlefield Earth?!?........ Ahhhh there we go, this book is to literature what the Battlefield Earth film is to cinema.

Our hero(?) is one Major Mitch Taylor a hard-as-nails-officer-with-a-heart-of-gold who loves his men but has no problem insulting junior officers in front of their troops while sleeping with one of his (female) sergeants and, who seems quite unconcerned when his troops start getting killed around him.

Its a pretty standard Earth-invasion story, set a bit into the future - baddies show up & frag Mars base, invade (mostly) the Moon base and then push onto Earth.

A few high-points - every conversation carried out over the radio ends with "over and out." - I get the feeling Mr. Thomas learned radio procedure by watching TV.

A few days after (literally - I think this bit takes place two days after the aliens land) being invaded US scientists are able to remove the engines from two captured alien ships, bolt them to two of their own ships (again - literally - the alien engines are self-contained units, just connect your own control systems, kind of like an alien Ikea store I guess) and use them to do a high-speed re-supply run to the moon! - take that! Independence Day with your Mac virus delivery!

My favorite - instead of writing interesting or exciting dialogue, almost every conversation has people joining it or contributing to it, by shouting - really on almost every page someone shouts something at or to someone else - even meetings between generals to discuss tactics or alien technology. This device is, apparently, used to create excitement! and urgency! and demonstrate conflict! between characters! (the author also likes exclamation marks!)

There are also two sequels, creatively named Battle Earth II & Battle Earth III - no, I won't be reading them.

Last edited by Battle Pope; 05-13-2012 at 07:42 PM.. Reason: Must spell check.
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  #38  
Old 05-13-2012, 07:49 PM
BrainGlutton BrainGlutton is online now
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Originally Posted by TonySinclair View Post
IMO Niven has written at least two better invasion stories than that, namely "World of Ptavvs" and "Protector."
Well, Thrintun are not humanoid. Pak Protectors, OTOH . . . well, I won't spoil what they are, but it's definitely humanoid.
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  #39  
Old 05-13-2012, 09:32 PM
Yorikke Yorikke is offline
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Originally Posted by Ashley Pomeroy View Post
If you've got several days free, I can heartily recommend Harry Turtledove's Worldwar series, which mashes together an alien invasion, alternative history, and World War II without being a complete train wreck.
That sounds interesting. Thanks!

Joe
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  #40  
Old 05-13-2012, 09:42 PM
BrainGlutton BrainGlutton is online now
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Originally Posted by wheresgeorge04 View Post
That sounds interesting. Thanks!

Joe
You'd best be prepared to invest a lot of time in it, though. Turtledove's storytelling-style is usually unbearably tedious, like, "And then another locust came and carried away another grain of corn . . ."
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  #41  
Old 05-14-2012, 03:16 AM
septimus septimus is online now
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I got a malware warning from Chrome on that page.
Thanks for the heads-up. I was not trying to infect your machines, though as Andy L points out, the connection was eerily appropriate.

I run Avast and Firefox 3.6.28 with ABP, but my kids have switched to Chrome and, just now, I confirm it gives the warning. Maybe it's time I switched too. (FTR, as I understand the warning, it doesn't detect malware per se, but recognizes a linked-to site as being rated as malware.)

Anyway, OP asked for "humanoid" aliens so maybe my recommendation was poor anyway. Unless H. sapiens and its technology is considered "humanoid."
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  #42  
Old 05-14-2012, 09:53 AM
Elendil's Heir Elendil's Heir is online now
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In that genre, I'd also suggest The Puppet Masters by Robert Heinlein.
Most definitely. Creepy, and with a pretty cool futuristic James Bond/espionage gloss to it. The movie is quite different, a little cheesy, but fun in its own right, I thought.
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  #43  
Old 05-14-2012, 10:09 AM
Rala Rala is offline
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The Midwich Cuckoos by John Wyndham.
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  #44  
Old 05-14-2012, 10:40 AM
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It's kind of opposite, in that it's humans discovering an alien planet and going off to it for a look see, but I found it pretty interesting: The Sparrow. A team of researchers travels to the planet to study and learn about its inhabitants, and things go wrong from there.
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  #45  
Old 05-14-2012, 12:47 PM
Valgard Valgard is offline
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Well, Thrintun are not humanoid.
Sure they are, aside from the wrong number of eye - torso, head, two arms, two legs.
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  #46  
Old 05-14-2012, 01:32 PM
The Tooth The Tooth is online now
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Anyone considering reading the Chtorr series should go in knowing that the series is incomplete and probably will remain that way. (The last book published was in 1993. The most recent update was apparently in 2004 when David Gerrold released the titles of the remaining three books. And told people to be patient.)
Gerrold's a reasonably healthy guy (as compared to, say, George Martin), so I still hold out hope. Besides, I donated a fair sum of money to charity for the privilege of having a gruesome death in the next book. In an odd way, Mr. Gerrold owes it to me to finish A Method for Madness.
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  #47  
Old 05-14-2012, 03:06 PM
GargoyleWB GargoyleWB is offline
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Originally Posted by Gagundathar View Post
The very first instance that came to my mind was "Footfall". In my opinion, it is probably the best written and most realistic-feeling alien invasion novel
I reread this recently, having loved it when I first read it in the 80's. With today's hindsight, it has aged really badly, with the cold war USSR people and plots and settings so ridiculously caricatured that it makes Rocky 4 look like a documentary in comparison.

I really loved Greg Bear's 'Forge of God' and 'Anvil of Stars', the first book being the invasion, with the sequel being our eventual retaliation.
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  #48  
Old 05-14-2012, 06:04 PM
A Sniveling Mess A Sniveling Mess is offline
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How about Invasion of the Body Snatchers? The Pod People are humanoid-by-imitation, that's why they're scary.
Even the title sounds frightening.Seriously,that book seems fairly popular.Did you think it was pretty good?
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  #49  
Old 05-15-2012, 11:33 AM
Cat Whisperer Cat Whisperer is offline
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I recommend the novel "Battlefield Earth" by L. Ron Hubbard (yes, THAT L.Ron Hubbard). The movie was not so good; I found the book quite entertaining. I think people stay away from the book because of the movie, but there's nothing wrong with the book.
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Old 05-15-2012, 11:46 AM
OtakuLoki OtakuLoki is offline
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At the risk of sounding like a total boor - I must disagree most vehemently with the previous poster's opinion of Battlefield Earth. I read it when it first came out, and I finished it because I was then still too young to realize that even navel-gazing was better than finishing dreck and life is too short to give to authors who wrote dreck.

It's a horrible, horrible book, that failed completely to make the bar of being able to approach suspension of disbelief. If you value your time, don't read it.
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