Monday, 13 December 2010

The longest SF series

The Walk into Mordor blog has put together a list of the longest SF series as a companion to its earlier list on fantasy series. German SF character Perry Rhodan is by some considerable margin the winner here (a conservative estimate of 120,000 pages across hundreds of novels and thousands of short stories and novellas published over half a century). Marion Zimmer Bradley's Darkover series is currently running a very distant second (although the compiler hasn't yet counted C.J. Cherryh's Alliance-Union books, which will probably be similar in length).

An interesting project. Reader feedback almost doubled the length of the fantasy list, interesting to see how this one goes.

6 comments:

jamie said...

I'd heard of Perry Rhodan before this, he length just seems a bit absurd, but I'm sure it has it's fans.
I wonder what it would be like to have started reading the series when it started and still be reading it now? The mind boggles it really does.

Longasc said...

I have read the first ~2150 novels of the Perry Rhodan series. Quality and style changed a lot over 35 years, which should not be too surprising.

I was not even born when the series began. Sadly the original creators of the series have all died by now. While quite good new authors are writing for the series, it is not their creation and they are not nearly as devoted to the series. I prefer the older novels a lot and stopped reading, the dime novel format is not particularly appealing anymore either and it is quite hard to store 2000+ novels of this kind.

The older novels are re-published as hardcovers, and I can recommend them to everyone who can read German.

I read why the creator of the list did not include Star Trek and Star Wars, a pity, as they are the major SciFi universes of our time. Though I often wonder if Star Wars is more Fantasy or SciFi.

Peadar said...

Luzi was reading an episode of this when he came to visit me last year...

Gabriele C. said...

Perry Rhodan ... the sins of my youth, lol. I had a bunch of them (they were rather pretty books with silver and blue covers) but sold them when I moved to university. It's the sort of books most people will outgrow, but they were fun space romps back then.

Adam Whitehead said...

The creator isn't including STAR WARS and STAR TREK as monolithic blocks (i.e. all 300+ STAR TREK novels or all 100+ STAR WARS novels) but is counting individual sub-series which are longer than 1,000 pages. The only series from either franchise which counts is THE NEW JEDI ORDER. Otherwise they are all too short.

As he notes, given that criteria he is now considering excluding PERRY RHODAN as that is in a similar situation, or perhaps creating a dedicated shared world/multimedia list at a future date.

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