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Jules Verne wrote the Les Voyages Extraordinaires series, comprised of 54 novels, in an attempt to write a literary history of the universe. The term means extraordinary journeys and are stories that are a bit fantastic and a lot adventurous. These works are a foundation for what Science Fiction as a genre would become. The stories arouse wonder and excitement in its readers and revolve around the possibilities of technology.
The term was used by Verne to categorize his works and today it is used to describe works that are inspired by his works or works with similar themes and style.
Other Features of Voyages Extraordinaires Science Fiction
- Level of Real Science
High. Verne's use of science is primarily pedagogical. The works that follow the tradition of Voyages Extraordinaires are focused on sharing real, factual science (if the science of technology is not in existence today, then it's plausible it will be, and is knowingly explained).
- Level of Grand Ideas/Social Implications
Low. These are action adventure stories with a goal of sharing scientific knowledge and no real social dimension.
- Level of Characterization
ow. Characters in this tradition are not very well developed because the focus is on the adventure and not the character.
- Level of Plot Complexity
High. Voyages Extraordinaires is an action adventure story and so the plot drives the story forward. There are occasional asides from the plot to explain technology or scientific ideas.
- Level of Violence
G to PG. These are action adventure stories and violence is often present in them. However, the violence is akin to that found in stories for juveniles.
Related Science Fiction subgenres
Scientific Romance. Voyages Extraordinaires is really a part of the Scientific Romance genre.
Steampunk. Steampunk is influenced by Scientific Romance and adapts the style of these writers, including Verne, and so the style of Steampunk and Voyages Extraordinaires can be similar.
Some subgenres that might include or touch on Voyages Extraordinaire might be Undersea Science Fiction which might includes some sort of spectacular exploratory adventure. The Lost Worlds subgenre might include elements of the Voyages Extraodinaire in that the plot might include an adventure to explore some new world or hitherto unexplored landscape of which contain mysteries.
- 1 Voyages Extraordinaires
By Jules Verne. The foundational texts for this subgenre. Notable examples within the series: Twenty-Thousand Leagues Under the Sea, The Five Weeks in a Balloon, From the Earth to the Moon, Around the World in 80 Days, Journey to the Center of the Earth.
- 2 Pax Britannia series
By Jonathan Green. Technology is an integrated part of this 20th century Britain. Complete with dinosaurs in the zoo, dirigibles, shady villains, and dashing dandies.
- 3 Hunters of the Dark Sea
By Mel Odom. An ocean adventure story with deadly monsters, and an alien.
- 4 Dinotopia series
By James Gurney. A series of popular books about an isolated island inhabited by sentient dinosaurs and shipwrecked humans.
- 5 The Nautilus Sanction
By Simon Hawke. In this novel Jules Verne makes an appearance, as well as the famous Nautilus submarine.
- 6 Nautilus
By Craig Weatherhill. A Sequel to Jules Vern's Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Seas and The Mysterious Island. One writer's take on what happens after two of Verne's most famous books.
- 7 Captain Nemo
By Kevin J. Anderson This novel covers the fictional biography of one of Jules Verne's most memorable characters, Nemo.
- 8 Larklight series
By Philip Reeve. Larklight is a house beyond the moon that orbits the Earth. These books are fun adventure stories with space technology that might have come from the imagination of Jules Verne.
- 9 The Hollow Earth
By Rudy Rucker. Mason Reynolds is accused of murder and embarks on an expeditiion with his father's slave and Edgar Allan Poe to the South Pole.
- 10 The Twenty-one Balloons
By William Pène du Bois. Winner of the 1948 Newbury Medal, this adventure story follows a professor's attempt to fly across the Pacific Ocean, only to find a fantastic land.