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What Are Your Top 5 Books?

I was browsing an artsy bookstore in the city today- and got in to a conversation with someone on what their all-time top 5 favourite books would be. I'm not sure about the order - but here are mine. (and yes - I do read other books besides SF - but this is what I like most)

1. Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell - weird and disjointed but just so damn good

2. The Sparrow by Mary Doria Russell - I wouldn't think a story of ET contact and the catholic priesthood could move me so much - very hard to describe without it sounding dumb - but a great read

3. A Fire Upon the Deep by Vernor Vinge - The best massively imagined Space Opera ever written

4. Oryx and Crake - Margaret Atwood - Depressing in its dystopian vision, but so well thought out and realized.

5. The Yiddish Policeman's Union - Michael Chabon - I don't usually go for the alternate history type books - but the cold Sitka Alaska setting really works for me. The Coen Brothers are making this into a movie.

Honorable Mention: Titan by John Varley because I read it in 8th grade and still read it every 5 years

Iran Air Flight 655 (IR655), a commercial flight, that flew from Bandar Abbas, Iran to Dubai, UAE, was shot down on Sunday July 3, 1988, towards the end of the Iran Iraq War, by the U.S. Navy guided missile... continue reading

posted by Kulpims T'dna (kulpims) 1 decade 3 years 10 months 4 weeks ago • 11,953 views

Christianity and Atheism in the United States

I'm curious about the seemingly high level of vocal atheists on the Sift. I'm guessing that most or many of them are from the US (simply because I think that's where most / many of our Sifters are from). At first I was baffled as to where this movement came from, until I learned that some 25% of the US populace calls itself evangelical Christian (I think I discovered that watching "Jesus Camp"), so now it seems to me more like atheism may be an equal and opposite reaction, but I personally don't know.

In Canada (at least the parts where I've been) we hardly have either vocal evangelicals or vocal atheists, so overt Bible-thumping and backlash against it are rather foreign concepts. (As I've said before, the topic of evolution is basically a non-issue up here.) I've also barely visited the States, so haven't experienced much of what life in the US is like. Anybody care to weigh in with comments about the prevalence of visible Christianity in the US?

PS: I'm sincerely hoping this thread can happen without getting ugly or hostile. We're all grown-ups.
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