Science Fiction vs Fantasy

Use this forum to discuss the July 2020 Book of the month, "Zona: The Forbidden Land" by Fred G. Baker.
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Elvis Best
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Re: Science Fiction vs Fantasy

Post by Elvis Best »

Oh I believe the book is more science fiction than fantasy. I did enjoy the build-up of the story and when the sci-fi parts were introduced though. So I would say it was pretty normal for the author to introduce it in the second part.
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Ellylion
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Post by Ellylion »

AlexisLib wrote:
> I have read much more fantasy than science fiction. As I was reading
> [i]Zona[/i], I kept waiting for the science fiction, and it really didn't
> appear until halfway through the book. Is that normal for science fiction
> books?
>
> And when it finally did appear, as prehistoric animals and different
> hormones and chemicals and vegetation, at first I was like, is that all
> there is? With fantasy, magic or unusual things appear very quickly, within
> the first few pages, and then there's tons of other occurrences. I think
> one could even argue that the science fiction elements weren't really
> science fiction at all, we are always discovering new animals and plants in
> the jungles and other areas that haven't been fully explored yet.
>
> What did you think about the science fiction in this book? Is the type and
> amount of science fiction typical for books in this category?
I guess, prehistoric animals, living in some different conditions, could be classified as science fiction. The main question here is what made their existence possible, in my opinion.
Claris L
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Post by Claris L »

Sjtoy wrote:
> I felt this book was of the science fiction genre. Although it did not jump
> in to the true science fiction elements right away, the beginning half of
> the story offered a good build up for the plot and what was to come. This
> book reminded me much of the Jurassic Park world.

I agree. This book feels more of a science fiction genre due to all the sci-fi parts in the second half, especially the hormones and so on working its way into the book.
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Post by Chikom »

The Science fiction in the book was well balanced. There was no too much or less use of Sci- fiction. I did like it because too much of science fiction in the book would have turned me off from reading the book.
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Post by B00kN1nja »

I think a key differentiator between science-fiction and fantasy [b]should be[/b] the ability to use scientific theory to form an explanation for the fictional elements or at least the unexplainable is a direct work of science. For example, in [i]Zona[/i] the animals of abnormal size were explained by a unique hot spot that existed, allowing them to live past the last ice age and still exist in our world. This might not be incredibly realistic, but it has some theoretically feasibility (at least on the surface level). While in a book such as [i]Lord of the Rings[/i], there is no logical reason or even perhaps believable explanation that a little ring could be so powerful.

Something like H.G. Wells [i]The Time Traveler[/i] is a good borderline example. Quite frankly, the majority of the book is very fanciful and almost borderline nonsense in my opinion, but the main focus of the book is scientific inquiry.

Space novels seem to be the exception for this (not perhaps always justifiably). Someone previously mentioned [i]Star Wars[/i], which really should space-fantasy or just fantasy (or as was previously stated a “space-opera”). Yet, because it takes place in space, it seems to become automatically classified as sci-fi.

I do think that with the strange animal telecommunication and some other unexplored questions, [i]Zona[/i] was bordering fantasy rather than sci-fi, but similar to [i]The Time Traveler[/i], it focuses on scientific inquiry. So, perhaps it does better fit in sci-fi.
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Nhitra
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Post by Nhitra »

I think it's quite normal for a science fiction book to introduce the science fiction part of the book later on because sometimes authors want to introduce the more internal conflict before getting to the action part.
readsbyarun
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Post by readsbyarun »

It's completely dependent on the way readers see it. If you are a Sci-fi lover, you will definitely ignore the other wide of the novel or won't take much attention towards the fantasy.
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Post by RachelEmmanuel »

SunVixen wrote:
> [quote=Leen282 post_id=1471811 time=1595399624 user_id=1668113]
> [quote="Kansas City Teacher" post_id=1471605 time=1595372312
> user_id=98251]
>
>
> I did not know I liked it, either, and have trouble differentiating the two
> as well. So would stories like Star Wars be sci-fi or fantasy, or both?
> [/quote]
>
> As for the Zone, stories about a strange place with ancient animals have
> been popular since the 19th century. The very first book about such a place
> was "The Lost World" by Arthur Conan Doyle. In this book, the
> characters find a strange place in the forests of South America, where
> dinosaurs and ape-like people live. This book is considered science
> fiction.
>
> However, such stories could only be considered true sci-fi during the time
> of Arthur Conan Doyle. Now, the Earth is too well studied. Siberia is very
> large, but even in Siberia one can hardly find such a place. Therefore,
> "Zone" should be called surreal sci-fi or something like that.

You also have Jules Verne's " Journey to the Centre of the Earth." More modern sci-fi often has references to parellel worlds that exist in the same space and can be accessed through some sort of portal. Perhaps if the author had alluded to something like that it would have strengthen the sci-fi aspect of the book and made it seem less like fantasy.
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Dayodiola
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Post by Dayodiola »

Does writing have a hard and fast rule on how to do things? Where to introduce the theme and when to make it take shape depends on the author.
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LuciusM
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Post by LuciusM »

There are levels of Sci- Fi in novels; those that are pure and those that include it in doses. For this book, it balanced between sci-fi and fantasy which was okay for me.
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Odette Chace
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Post by Odette Chace »

I really felt like the genre of the book changed multiple times as I was reading it. It started off as a kind of mystery/thriller as Grant tried to piece together what happened to his uncle. Then, once the expedition left, the story became more of an adventure novel. Then, at the very end, the book finally took a turn into sci-fi when the wolf/human conversations started happening.

I don't read a lot of science-fiction, but I really don't believe this is a trend for the genre.
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Post by Barbie_sidhu »

From what I have learned from the book till now, it is not completely a sci-fi, Neither it has much fantasy elements. Although, there are pinches of sci-fi in beginning of the book. The writing of the author is commendable so far.
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Post by damis »

I would be more inclined to say it was sci-fi. In my opinion though, the fine line between sci-fi and fantasy lays on whether the reader believes what they say adheres enough to the rules of the real world to be "scientific" or if it is way too far away. Enough to reach the fantasy level.
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Post by TCG »

For me, I feel the author reserves the right to determine the style of involving the science-fiction. This can possibly be a style than an abnormality.
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Post by Charity Damaris »

I think the science fiction in the book was of the correct quantity as the same as fantasy.This makes the book interesting for redears to read.The author did a great job
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