The first science fiction, fantasy or horror book I ever read was: Too long ago to remember. I remember Grover’s The Monster at the End of This Book. From what I can recall, the first genre book that I checked out from the adult section at the library was one of Keith Laumer’s. The first I bought, depending on your definition, was either Superman III or Ogre, Ogre. Hey, I was young.
The last science fiction, fantasy or horror book I read that I’d put in my “Top 20″ list is: The older you get, the harder it is for something new to crack the top 20. Not just based on nostalgia but by sheer numbers. This goes back a while but the only candidates would be World War Z or House of Leaves. I can’t remember which I read first.
The last science fiction, fantasy or horror book I couldn’t finish was: Ringstones and Other Curious Tales by Sarban aka John William Wall. It wasn’t bad. I was going through a bad patch of life and just didn’t have the energy to read it.
A science fiction, fantasy or horror author whose work I cannot get enough of is: Richard Matheson, Frederick Brown, and Robert Bloch. I’m constantly looking for short stories that I haven’t read before but there’s not much left.
A science fiction, fantasy or horror author I’m ashamed to admit I haven’t read yet is: Octavia Butler. I’ve checked out a few of her books but never got around to reading them.
A science fiction, fantasy or horror book I would recommend to someone who hasn’t read sf/f/h is:
For fantasy, The Hobbit would be a better choice for a newer reader than Lord of the Rings or Game of Thrones. I could also go with Peter Beagle’s The Last Unicorn. For science fiction, I might pick short stories of Isaac Asimov or “All You Zombies” by Robert Heinlein. I’m not a huge fan of either of them but modern SF is built on their material. For horror, I would go with Stephen King or Robert Bloch (not the most original choice but they could draw in newer readers).
A science fiction, fantasy or horror book that’s terribly underrated is: The Chronicles Of Prydain by Lloyd Alexander is the first to come to mind. Disney’s The Black Cauldron pretty much killed interest in the series.
A science fiction, fantasy or horror book that’s terribly overrated is: I’m old and ready for the retirement home so I’ll pick about any young adult series that my kids have brought home. And, after 5,000 viewings, I’m at the point of including Harry Potter with them.