I must recognize that I’m a lover of sci-fi books. However, I always feel embarrassed when I get to a bookstore and I ask for the sci-fi department. Society doesn’t view favourably a man in his thirties reading such genre yet. It seems to be adressed to teens or, even worse, people think that you suffer from a Peter Pan Syndrome.
Nothing at all. Even though this genre is quite young (William Wilson first used the “science fiction” term in 1851 and Hugo Gernsback popularized it in the late Twenties), it isn’t just about spaceships, aliens and robots. Sci-fi authors don’t have to stick to a real world, feeling free to talk about significant topics such as philosophy, religious beliefs or humankind destination without the constraints of the classic genres.
Furthermore, some novels are so differents that they don’t look like belonging to the same genre. It ensures that there is one novel for everyone, no matter what your interests are.
What advice can I give you if you want to get to this amazing genre? Well, it depends on your tastes. Most of Nebula Awards are fascinating (now, I’m trying to read them all). I can get you started with some of them: Neuromancer (William Gibson, 1984), Dune (Frank Herbert, 1965), 2001: A Space Odyssey (Arthur C. Clarke, 1968).
Anyway, no matter what you choose. Sci-fi is an endless genre that will help you open your mind as well as make you see things differently.