Possible Duplicate:
Spy movies/ books: On topic?

Are questions about Neal Stephenson's Baroque Cycle allowed on this site? Stephenson is usually labeled as a science fiction writer, but I'm not sure whether the Baroque Cycle fits that label. It's obviously not scifi in the space opera sense, and even a broader speculative fiction label like alternative history seems something of a stretch. On the other hand, according to a quote on the Wikipedia article on the Baroque Cycle, Stephenson himself has characterized it as science fiction; perhaps in the very literal sense of fiction about science:

Labels such as science fiction are most useful when employed for marketing purposes, i.e., to help readers find books that they are likely to enjoy reading. With that in mind, I'd say that people who know and love science fiction will recognize these books as coming out of that tradition. So the science fiction label is useful for them as a marketing term. However, non-S.F. readers are also reading and enjoying these books, and I seem to have a new crop of readers who aren't even aware that I am known as an S.F. writer. So it would be an error to be too strict or literal-minded about application of the science fiction label.

  • 1
    See also Spy movies/ books: On topic?. The only way to be sure of what the community will do is to go and ask a question. As far as I'm concerned, we're inclusive: if it's marketed as SF, or referenced on ISFDB, or contains nontrivial SF-nal elements, it's on-topic.
    – user56
    Apr 26, 2011 at 20:29
  • If questions about 90% of Philip K Dick's books are on topic, this should be.
    – DampeS8N
    Apr 26, 2011 at 20:43
  • @Gilles: care to re-post your comment as an answer? Considering Quicksilver is marketed on Amazon in the categories "Family Saga", "Historical" and "Science Fiction", yours seems like the best answer to my question. (amazon.com/Quicksilver-Baroque-Cycle-Neal-Stephenson/dp/…)
    – Rinzwind
    Apr 27, 2011 at 18:45
  • I think this is part of the general issue of borderline topics, so I've marked this question as a dupe of the spy movies question.
    – user56
    Apr 27, 2011 at 19:21


Browse other questions tagged .