One of the best ways that you can expand your mind and jump right into the unknown is by grabbing a good book and settling in. If you want to explore both the outer and inner universe, the truth is that science fiction books are probably going to be your best option. In fact, you may even get to go on a revolutionary trip through time.
Here are five of the best science fiction books written. However, you must be warned: once you read these, they are so amazing that you are going to be yearning for more.
Orson Scott Card: Ender’s Game
This is probably one of the best science fiction books ever written. This is the story of humanity being in danger from an outer force. This story sets up an emotional bond with readers as you delve deep into the tangled up theme of anxiety and survival of an outer threat to life. When the great minds of Earth band together to defend their life and all that they hold close to them, the strategy to defend the world is like nothing you could ever imagine.
The up and coming generals and admirals are housed in an academy that was created for the best and brightest of the world. They are an investment into the creation of a safer future. However, the future of humanity is hanging by a thread against an immense alien force.
As the story opens, the attack has already occurred, and there were millions of souls that were lost. The aliens also suffered many losses and therefore, have withdrawn from the attack. Everyone is in constant expectation that the alien attackers will regroup and then return to Earth to complete their mission of total annihilation. The only hope to survive this is to retaliate—to strike back against them and to destroy the forces that will be invading before they return to complete their job.
James S.A. Corey: Leviathan Wakes (Expanse)
If George R.R. Martin was able to enjoy himself while reading this book, chances are that you will have just as much fun as well. Basically, it’s a space opera—so it’s a mixture of the best of the genre of science fiction. You will constantly be on the edge of your seat in this action packed ride.
Within Leviathan Wakes, the story is woven through all of the main characters and you get descriptions from a variety of different points of view. The characters in this book have been developed well and you will see them growing before your very eyes as you progress through each and every chapter. You will naturally become attached to these characters—and you will be hoping that they will be able to make it through and solve the story as it unfolds.
Leviathan Wakes takes place in the future—not too far away—when colonization of the solar system has taken place. Humanity is dealing with the many struggles in accepting the differences that occur from living in the various areas of our small solar system. Earth is seen as a status symbol for those who are living in the outer asteroid belt—and they are always mining for resources. Proud Martians are building grand domes and terraforming on the red planet, which is their home.
There is a political premise that is created in order to start a war between the residents of Earth, the residents of Mars, and the rebels who are living in the outer asteroid belt. Since all of them are both involved and depend on their resources, violence is an extremely undesirable event—but is something that is not able to be avoided.
Philip K. Dick: Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?
This classic book by Philip K. Dick is very well-known and has recently been made much more famous by the movie Blade Runner. This is a thriller that has been set in the future, which is quite gloomy.
Here, we find corporations of industrial complexes that rule the world and so much more. The humans on the planet have both accepted and increased androids both as companions and as workers. The main character becomes involved with an anomaly located on a distant mining colony. He must both investigate and go get the rebel androids who have committed murder. They head to earth to find them and eliminate them. The main character is a “blade runner” named Deckard. The term “blade runner” is a flashy name for those who locate and getting rid of rebel androids.
During his search for these evil androids, he comes into contact with a variety of concepts which make him—and the reader—think about what it is exactly that makes and defines a human. This is an amazing book that is not really that far off from what could potentially be a reality in our society as we go into the future, progressing deeper into technology and developing both human augmentation and artificial intelligence.
Andy Weir: The Martian
As soon as I discovered Ridley Scott had taken to directing a science fiction movie that was based on a best-seller, I had to find the book and read it out of pure curiosity. This book is about a Martian Robinson Crusoe and is based in the near future. In this future, humanity sets out to explore Mars, the red planet. Our hero had been having fun with and enjoying spending time with his crew until a storm hit, preventing him from being able to evacuate with his comrades and being left stranded.
In this book, we follow his adventures and his torments as he attempts to survive the rescue mission that is meant to save him. However, there’s a bit of an issue—they believe that he died during the accident. In this story, we see how he survives and ingeniously salvages everything he can so that he can last as long as possible until someone can make it back to save him.
Though it is a science fiction novel, the book is actually fairly accurate in the facts and nearly everything portrayed when it comes to being stuck on Mars and trying to find a way to survive.
You will be hooked from the very beginning as you go through all of the emotions from joy to despair and you will cheer for each and every success—no matter how small—of our modern Robinson Crusoe as he shares with you his solitude on Mars.
George Orwell: 1984
Don’t even think about the numbers—this book is actually a science fiction masterpiece and is on almost every list of recommendations in this genre. You should consider it a look into all aspects of time: the past, present, and even the future. Even during these present times, it’s actually full of many themes that will make you do some serious thinking.
The main characters of this book are mortals—they have no fancy gadgets or superpowers. They are human and just as real as you and I are. They live their lives through their daily routines, just as we do—but their world is just slightly different. Division has taken place in their world after a great war—and the citizens are always being watched and monitored and have been forced to conform to the rules that have been imposed upon the ruling Party—which is a political organization that controls everyone through propaganda and the threat of a new war occurring.
In this book, we are following the character, Winston who is attempting to survive and adapt in this “Big Brother” society that will strike down on anyone who doesn’t want to play by the rules. There are many similarities with the world today, with all the scandals that refer to monitoring of private citizens and analysis of the data that has been collected. The thing that makes this even more impressive is that it was written in 1949. This is truly one of the best science fiction novels written—and is a must read.
Sometimes, you just want to escape reality—and reading a good science fiction book is a great way to do that. However, some people do believe that there are similarities to our current society and these books. Take them as they are—an escape.