(original review, 2000)
Just started re-reading this yesterday and am already gripped. It's truly unsettling in the most understated of ways. It reminds me a little of John Wyndham's work; it has a similar quality of matter-of-factness about it that somehow makes it all the more chilling.
Pure literary gold...strangely put me in mind of "Stoner". You read and there is no way you can stop. Unless you need to go pee or drink a cup of coffee. Or you're really tired and go to bed. Or you've arrived at work and, seriously, you can't stand in front of class reading a random book; especially not on your smartphone. Other than that it's unputdownable.
SF is a genre, comic books are a medium. There are SF comic books, and there are comic books in just about any other genre under the sun. If you're referring specifically to the Superhero genre of comic books, well it's debatable as to whether that's Science Fiction or not, but it's certainly an allied genre within the whole Speculative Fiction umbrella. Star Wars is SF, specifically the subgenre called Space Opera which is a soft SF genre, light on science, heavy on futuristic action and adventure elements.
As for SF in general, I really feel I need to do more to venture outside my Anglo-American comfort zone. I've read a couple of works in translation which have been somewhat lackluster and that's put me off a bit. Having said that, I read Roadside Picnic by the Strugatsky brothers this week, and enjoyed it so much that I didn't put it down until I was finished. Also, I tend to buy books on impulse but have never found myself buying a translated book this way - there just doesn't seem to be that many, particularly for recent works. Consequently, although I could name a few old SF writers from around the world, I really have no idea who the Taiwanese equivalent of Adam Roberts is, for instance.
NB: If only someone could write a book where one would feel afraid to turn the page.