Search Amazon.com for frank herbertSearch Amazon.com for douglas adamsSearch Amazon.com for kurt vonnegutSearch Amazon.com for isaac asimovSearch Amazon.com for arthur c clarkeSearch Amazon.com for heinleinHave you earned your sci-fi chops? Everyone needs the classical underpinnings of a good sci-fi reading background. It must include Heinlein, Arthur C. Clarke, Ray Bradbury, Isaac Asimov, Kurt Vonnegut, Douglas Adams, Frank Herbert, Aldus Huxley, George Orwell, Kim Stanley Robinson, and Margaret L’Engle. It will probably also include Orson Scott Card, H. G. Wells, C. S. Lewis and L. Ron Hubbard. These are the basics.
You could then branch out into fantasy like Jordan’s “Wheel of Time” books (I thinks there are 12 so far). Harry Potter sort of fits in here also. Perhaps The Carlos Castenades ‘Don Juan” books, the “Star Wars” books and the “Star Trek” books.
These books help define where our future will go. Do books predict the future or does the future copy the books? It doesn’t matter. If you have a great sci-fi background you will be there. These books are mind-expanding, like algebra. OK, maybe you don’t like algebra. But algebra is brain training. It sets up certain pathways in your brain that you might not develop from any other discipline (although geometry also helps, and physics). In terms of helping with logical thinking I don’t think there is a more powerful tool than mathematics.
If you don’t read these books you will also fall behind the cultural curve. Certain allusions will elude you. Who are the Aes Sedai? What is a space elevator? What is a Trillium? Suspensor chairs? It will just go on and on, the number of potentially important things you will not know.
Do a search (google or other) for a list of the top 100 sci-fi titles.