50th Anniversary: Books Escape into Fantasy, Sci-Fi Worlds

Lakewood Leader 02/02/1991

Chad Muller | Staff Writer

If you had the chance to walk through a time-travel door from this sometimes-crazy world of ours and into a world of wizards, robots, and other magical beings, would you take it?

But we’re not just talking fantasy here. There is a way to travel to other worlds. Not through a time-travel door, but the pages of a book of Fantasy and Science Fiction.

Some of the more classic books in these two genres are recommended by John Minton, of the English Department. Minton teaches a variety of English classes as well as courses in Fantasy and Sci-Fi.

Minton recommends a few of the older tales:

“Flowers for Algeron” by Daniel Keyes. About the companionship of a mouse and a boy named Charlie.

“A Canticle for Leibowitz” by Walter M. Miller, Jr. Would the human race repeat the destruction of Earth once it has already been destroyed?

“The Time Machine” by H.G. Wells. The name suggests the content: about a time traveller and the machine he created to do it with.

“The Island of Dr. Moreau” by H.G. Wells. A mad doctor is breeding something strange on his island, something savage.

“The Earthsea Trilogy” by Ursula K. Le Guin. This is a fantasy classic about the wizard Ged and his travels through Earthsea. The first book is “A Wizard of Earthsea,” and three books follow.

“The Martian Chronicles” by Ray Bradbury. Man has finally gone to Mars and met Martians and their strange culture. Try Bradbury’s short fiction, he’s one of the more imaginative writers, says Minton.

“City” by Clifford D. Simak. About a robot who takes it upon itself to do out of the ordinary from other robots.

The titles and authors are just a few in the worlds that can be travelled to without leaving your seat.

Most of the titles can be found in Lakewood’s library, and some can be purchased at your local bookstore. All books have one thing in common: freedom.

And sometimes, in this world of ours, we just don’t have enough of that magic word.