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Over the summer, NPR released a list of the top 100 science-fiction and fantasy novels, as voted by fans.
While I let that thought steep in my mind, I found myself going through an infographic detailing the best-selling sci-fi books of all time. The infographics gives a bit more information about the books, in case you have not read them or heard about them. Gods of Little Earth, (Speculative Fiction Review, 2007) is the first volume of a trilogy by J.
As a meditation on history, human conflict, religion, technology and child-abuse, 2050: Gods of Little Earth is speculative fiction steeped in the influence of the likes of George Orwell and Frank Herbert.
Growing up, I was a huge fan of Sci-Fi books, not so much the insides (except for some Asimov), only the outsides.
Alien invasions usually involve extraterrestrials arriving at Earth to destroy, enslave, or eat humans. Criticized for its violence (and possibly popular because of it), Ender’s Game shows children on a military space station, training for the war against the evil alien Buggers. Starship Troopers was written while Heinlein was taking a break on Stranger in a Strange Land. It looks like a good deal at first: a peaceful alien invasion by the mysterious Overlords, whose arrival ends all war, helps form a world government, and turns the planet into a near-utopia.
Clarke has said that the idea for Childhood’s End may have come from the numerous blimps floating over London during World War II. An accidental invasion by an extraterrestrial microbe that almost instantly clots human blood or causes insanity. In the year 3016, the Second Empire of Man spans hundreds of star systems, thanks to the faster-than-light Alderson Drive. It’s a rare author that can start with such an intriguing premise and carry it through, while exceeding expectations. The human race has had wormhole technology for over 300 years and has colonized several hundred planets. Earth is introduced to extraterrestrial life by the Galactics, who tell world leaders that an invasion by another alien race, the Posleen, is coming, and they are bringing with them a terrible book cover. A Hymn Before Battle is the first book in Ringo’s Legacy of the Aldenata series, which already has twelve books, and at least two more planned. The Day Of The Triffids is a classic, one of the cornerstones of the post-apocalyptic genre. The density of detail may slow readers down, but the distinctive characters and the plot’s headlong drive will pull them along. Brin’s tales are set in a future universe in which no species can reach sentience without being “uplifted” by a patron race. The Terran exploration vessel Streaker has crashed in the uncharted water world of Kithrup, bearing one of the most important discoveries in galactic history.
Winner of both the Hugo and Nebula awards, Startide Rising is the second book in the Uplift series (there’s a total of six), but popular opinion has it that the first book, Sundiver, can safely be skipped.
Fans of Bear’s earlier work may be disappointed by the less-visionary The Forge of God, but will still enjoy a compelling read. Conquered by the Jao twenty years ago, the Earth is shackled under alien tyranny—and threatened by the even more dangerous Ekhat, one of whose genocidal extermination fleets is coming to the solar system. The Course of Empire does a masterful job of describing deeply inhuman aliens, and makes them individuals, unlike most alien species (all Klingons are warlike, all Vogons write poetry, etc). The original manuscript of The Puppet Masters was too risque for the stuffy 1950s, and scenes of the main character waking up next to a blonde whose name he hadn’t bothered to learn had to be cut, as well as when the aliens discover human sexuality and embark on wild, televised(!) orgies.
Its politics date Footfall—set in the 1990s, it features a still-strong USSR, which is dominant in space.
By most accounts, Fire with Fire is an absorbing story of espionage, mystery, and space travel that’s firmly in the Military Science Fiction genre.
Reviewers applaud the well-rounded characters but aren’t too happy about the tough female soldiers who get both frightened and giggly a little too easily. More a story of alien infestation instead of alien invasion, A Matter For Men does a great job of imagining an alien ecology.
Varley does a great job of drawing full characters and imagining weird and wonderful ways humans carve out lives for themselves outside of Earth. The narrative can be a little heavy-handed, but it’s more about the forced loss of innocence than simply beating the drum for conservation.
Startling discoveries reveal that the Moon, Venus, even Mars once thrived with life—life that was snuffed out not just once but many times, in cycles of birth and destruction. An unknown alien race captures Earth with the use of a controlled wormhole, which was triggered accidentally by artificial gravity experiments issued from a human outpost in space. People generally either love or hate this book about alien plants that grow incredibly fast and start sucking the planet dry.
Called Chaga in the UK, Evolution’s Shore has been applauded for being one of the few truly intelligent books about alien contact.


Praised for its scientific accuracy and ability to hold up more than thirty years after publication, Fade Out is an overlooked gem. Pandora’s Planet follows lion-like invaders as they try to grasp the bizarre thought processes of the conquered humans. I’d recommend also checking out The Madness Season, where a vampire from earth helps free it from an alien invasion.
Check out the Breakers series by Edward W Robertson and Extermination Day by William Turnage..
August brought a ton of great new books to read, too, including Dragonbane, The End of All Things, and The Dark Forest. This stunning debut novel from London-based Malaysian fantasy writer Zen Cho is the first in a planned trilogy set in Regency England.
This is a time of endings and beginnings, old friends and new, a blurring of edges and a shifting of power.
As the fairy horde prepares for invasion, Tiffany must summon all the witches to stand with her. This novel is bittersweet, as it was the last book written by Terry Pratchett prior to his death in March of 2015. This post-apocalyptic thriller is a sequel to the #1 New York Times bestseller One Second After, and takes place ?as the title suggests) a year after its conclusion. Fans of the New York Times bestselling author of The Dresden Files and Codex Alera hardly need any urging to read this first installment in his newest series. For those of us who didn’t polish off those books as teenagers, embarking on a sci-fi education can be daunting.
Upon asking for clarification, I was informed that the reason for the statement was that I love sci-fi and fantasy, but I am not a Discworld fan. I bet you’ll be going to the bookstore or downloading ebooks after reading this post! When not writing, Noemi can be found on the road, hoping to encounter the dragon of her dreams. The biggest story of the year, in my opinion, is Pyr’s rise to prominence as a high-quality sci-fi imprint.
THE ANDROID’S DREAM by John Scalzi – Straight, fun sci-fi adventures are hard to come by these days, and Scalzi has done an awesome job with this one, with great characters, plotting and dialogue wrapped up by a plot that always stays 10 steps ahead of the readers. Vilb Solenthay, a nomad, sets out on a personal journey, only to discover that he is a pawn of the gods, a handful of ancient human beings who have been waiting for this very moment to fulfill their destiny.
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Instead of only making up a story, they make up entire universes, time dimensions, alien technologies - it's really incredible.
However, they refuse to answer questions about themselves and govern from orbiting spaceships. No other intelligent beings have ever been encountered, not until a light sail probe enters a human system carrying a dead alien.
It traces the fate of the world after a comet shower blinds most of the world’s population. Below, a handful of her human and dolphin crew battles an armed rebellion and the whole hostile planet to safeguard her secret—the fate of the Progenitors, the fabled First Race who seeded wisdom throughout the stars. Echoing his pro-military stance (I’m oversimplifying), Heinlein repeatedly makes explicit the analogy between the mind-controlling parasites and the Communist Russians. Some reviewers complained of unrealistic characters, but the consensus is that it’s still a fun and exciting read. To free humanity, a lone soldier must locate the Blackcollars, an elusive, elite, martial-arts-trained, genetically-enhanced guerrilla fighting force. Earthlings land on an Eden-like forest planet and immediately begin chopping down what they can and enslaving everything else. While it shares characters with the first book, it is not considered a sequel, so feel free to treat it as a stand-alone. The triffids are not aliens, they are the product of what we would now call genetic engineering, and the blindness is caused by a satellite weapon which is struck by meteorites.
There are several new installments coming in already renowned series, as well as several debuts from fantasy authors that are undeniably worthwhile.
The upcoming books of September look to be just as exciting. As usual, we’ve tried to include something on this list that will appeal to everyone. It is the forty-first and final novel in his comic fantasy series Discworld and the fifth featuring Tiffany Aching. This cautionary tale is a terrifying look into our potential future; while definitely not a lighthearted read, it is eye-opening and provides the reader with plenty of food for thought. Enter the blog SF Signal, which has performed a true public service by creating a flow chart based on the NPR list. I am still thinking of why this is the case, as I have attempted to read several Discworld books but never finished one.


I am actually questioning my reading habits right now, as I have read only a small percentage of this list!)) It also gives numbers as to how successful the books have been, hence their place on this list. Pyr has managed to round up a stable of authors and titles that represents the cutting edge of sci-fi and backs it up with promotion and marketing that pretty much outdoes the other imprints out there. INFOQUAKE is a tech-heavy exercise in scientific speculation that combines economics, high technology and business mechanics into an all-too-human story of greed, loss and redemption.
It’s at once cyberpunk and post-cyberpunk, awash in the verbiage of globalization and emerging-markets uncertainty. Truth be told, some are more successful than others - it is really easy to write bad scifi. The probe is traced to the Mote, an isolated star in a thick dust cloud, and an expedition is dispatched.
The few with sight must struggle to reconstruct society while fighting mobile, flesh-eating plants called triffids. While we usually limit ourselves to ten choices, we just had to add that extra one this month. Her stories have typically featured Malaysian as well as queer characters, and although that’s not the case in this novel ?as she has pointed out, Malaysia didn’t exist during this time period), it does deal with issues of social justice. If you haven’t read One Second After, we recommend you pick that one up first – both so you have the background information for the second book and because it’s a powerful story.
If his other two series are any indication, this one promises to be epic — and is, in fact, already getting rave reviews.
With more than 325 decisions and (duh) 100 books, the chart is massive—in fact, the unzipped, downloadable version clocks in at 173 megabytes.
But those who can actually pull the genre off are right here on this list of the top science-fiction authors.
Heinlein found himself under attack both from within and outside the science fiction community for his views, so he wrote Starship Troopers to clarify and defend his military and political views at the time. Zacharias is black, and the female protagonist, Prunella, is mixed-race, living in colonial England. There may be minor references to other events in the series, but nothing that should hinder your enjoyment. There are few things better than diving into a new fantasy series by an already-beloved author, so be sure to preorder this one. There are some big books that you know are mostly filler; others, such as RIVER OF GODS, could easily be twice their size and still be amazing. Zen Cho is helping meet the growing demand for diversity in the fantasy genre and shifting the norm away from the white, heternormative, male-dominated worlds we are used to. If you are not familiar with this humorous series, it often parodies popular fantasy series, literature, and mythology and uses them to satirize current issues. In fact, after reading this, you may find yourself wanting to peruse the other forty ?although if you have a to-read list like mine, that is a daunting task). CRYSTAL RAIN is a bloody, satisfying adventure that only provides a glimpse of the world Buckell’s created.
This list include some highly recognizable and classic names, like Isaac Asimov and George Orwell, along with some contemporary science-fiction writers who are just beginning to make their mark on the genre.
Although Terry Pratchett has expressed permission for his daughter to continue the series, she has announced that she has no plans to. So whether you’re already a fan of this prolific author or not, this book is certainly worth a look-over. This list of the best sci-fi authors includes some of the best horror writers and the best fantasy authors, but since the genres elements all go together nicely, it's to be expected.
They are not her typical contemporary romance fare; she adopted the pseudonym due to her long-standing desire to write romantic suspense novels ?a la Mary Stewart). All of the famous sci fi authors on this list have one thing in common: they've written fantastic, horrifying, mystical works of science-fiction for fans to enjoy for years to come.
Vote for your favorite sci-fi authors here and add your own personal faves if you don't see them listed!Listed among the best science-fiction authors are some of the most well-known, popular sci-di authors ever, including a few that may not always show up on a 'best of' list.
The aforementioned (brilliant) writers are responsible for some of the best science-fiction novels and series of all time - but other sci-fi writers like Ray Bradbury (Fahrenheit 451), Mary Shelley (Frankenstein), Robert Louis Stevenson (The Strange Case of Dr. All of these authors, in my opinion, deserve a place of honor on this list.Hopefully, this list will grow and become totally comprehensive.
Readers who are new to sci-fi can use it as a great guide to find new science fiction authors and books.



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