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Top 10 Science Fiction Books

Updated on July 23, 2017

Great Science Fiction Stories

Galactic battles for control of the universe, a search for hidden fortunes on distant planets or premonitions of what may befall mankind, we all like to escape our own world's reality and enjoy some really great science fiction stories.

But how do you discover which are the best science fiction books?

Is there a list that will give you some great personal reviews and recommendations that will guide your choice?

After extensive research I present for you now just such a list for your reading pleasure.

This is the top 10 list of the best ever science fiction books, all epics within their own rights and created by the recognised masters of science fiction.

Welcome To The Best Ever Science Fiction Books

Science Fiction stories combine elements of fiction and fantasy with scientific facts and are generally futuristic. Science Fiction books provide us with an escape from our own reality for a while.

Well here is your chance to choose from the Top 10 Best Ever Science Fiction Books and to spend some time in a different world than the one in which you currently live.

#10 Science Fiction Book

The Forever War - Joe Haldeman

The Forever War
The Forever War

Humans first bumped heads with the Taurans when we began using collapsars to travel the stars. Although the collapsars provide nearly instantaneous travel across vast distances, the relativistic speeds associated with the process means that time passes slower for those aboard ship. For William Mandella, a physics student drafted as a soldier, that means more than 27 years will have passed between his first encounter with the Taurans and his homecoming, though he himself will have aged only a year. When Mandella finds that he can't adjust to Earth after being gone so long from home, he reenlists, only to find himself shuttled endlessly from battle to battle as the centuries pass.


#9 Science Fiction Book

The War of the Worlds - H G Wells

The War of the Worlds
The War of the Worlds

The novel begins ominously, as the lone voice of a narrator tells readers that "No one would have believed in the last years of the nineteenth century that this world was being watched keenly and closely by intelligences greater than man's..." But soon the Martians reveal their true nature as death machines 100-feet tall rise up from the pit and begin laying waste to the surrounding land. The evacuation of London itself and the loss of all hope as England's military suffers defeat after defeat. The Martians suck the blood from living humans for sustenance, it's clear that man is not being conquered so much as corralled.


#8 Science Fiction Book

Ringworld - Larry Niven

Ringworld (A Del Rey book)
Ringworld (A Del Rey book)

A new place is being built, a world of huge dimensions, encompassing millions of miles, stronger than any planet before it. There is gravity, and with high walls and its proximity to the sun, a livable new planet that is three million times the area of the Earth can be formed. We can start again! A team of two humans and two aliens crash-land on a gigantic ring in a distant star system. The ring is millions of times larger than the Earth, and was clearly built by an advanced society.


#7 Science Fiction Book

2001: A Space Odyssey - Arthur C Clarke

2001: A Space Odyssey: 25th Anniversary Edition
2001: A Space Odyssey: 25th Anniversary Edition

When an enigmatic monolith is found buried on the moon, scientists are amazed to discover that it's at least 3 million years old. Even more amazing, after it's unearthed the artifact releases a powerful signal aimed at Saturn. What sort of alarm has been triggered? To find out, a manned spacecraft, the Discovery, is sent to investigate. Its crew is highly trained--the best--and they are assisted by a self-aware computer, the ultra-capable HAL 9000.


#6 Science Fiction Book

Fahrenheit 451 - Ray Bradbury

Ray Bradbury's Fahrenheit 451: The Authorized Adaptation
Ray Bradbury's Fahrenheit 451: The Authorized Adaptation

"Monday burn Millay, Wednesday Whitman, Friday Faulkner, burn ’em to ashes, then burn the ashes." For Guy Montag, a career fireman for whom kerosene is perfume, this is not just an official slogan. It is a mantra, a duty, a way of life in a tightly monitored world where thinking is dangerous and books are forbidden.


#5 Science Fiction Book

Stranger in a Strange Land - Robert A Heinlein

Stranger in a Strange Land (Remembering Tomorrow)
Stranger in a Strange Land (Remembering Tomorrow)

Valentine Michael Smith, born during, and the only survivor of, the first manned mission to Mars. Michael is raised by Martians, and he arrives on Earth as a true innocent: he has never seen a woman and has no knowledge of Earth's cultures or religions. But he brings turmoil with him, as he is the legal heir to an enormous financial empire, not to mention de facto owner of the planet Mars.


#4 Science Fiction Book

#3 Science Fiction Book

Hitch Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy: The Trilogy of Four
The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy: The Trilogy of Four

One Thursday lunchtime the Earth gets demolished to make way for a hyperspace bypass. For Arthur, who has just had his house demolished, this is too much. Sadly, the weekends just begun.The Restaurant at the End of the Universe: When all issues of space, time, matter and the nature of being are resolved, only one question remains: Where shall we have dinner?


Foundation - Isaac Asimov


Mathematician Hari Seldon spent his life developing a branch of mathematics known as psychohistory, using the law of mass action, it can predict the future, but only on a large scale. Seldon foresees the fall of the Galactic Empire, which encompasses the entire Milky Way, and a dark age lasting thirty thousand years before a second great empire arises. The focus of the trilogy is on the Foundation of the planet Terminus. The people living there are working on an all-encompassing Encyclopedia, and are unaware of Seldon's real intentions. The Encyclopedia serves to preserve knowledge of the physical sciences after the collapse. The Foundation's location is chosen so that it acts as the focal point for the next empire in another thousand years.


#2 Science Fiction Book

Ender's Game - Orson Scott Card

Ender's Game (The Ender Quintet)
Ender's Game (The Ender Quintet)

Intense is the word for Ender's Game. Aliens have attacked Earth twice and almost destroyed the human species. To make sure humans win the next encounter, the world government has taken to breeding military geniuses -- and then training them in the arts of war... The early training, not surprisingly, takes the form of 'games'... Ender Wiggin is a genius among geniuses; he wins all the games... He is smart enough to know that time is running out. But is he smart enough to save the planet?


#1 Science Fiction Book

Dune - Frank Herbert

Dune (Dune Chronicles, Book 1)
Dune (Dune Chronicles, Book 1)

The troubles begin when stewardship of Arrakis is transferred by the Emperor from the Harkonnen Noble House to House Atreides. The Harkonnens don't want to give up their privilege, though, and through sabotage and treachery they cast young Duke Paul Atreides out into the planet's harsh environment to die. There he falls in with the Fremen, a tribe of desert dwellers who become the basis of the army with which he will reclaim what's rightfully his. Paul Atreides, though, is far more than just a usurped duke. He might be the end product of a very long-term genetic experiment designed to breed a super human; he might be a messiah. His struggle is at the center of a nexus of powerful people and events, and the repercussions will be felt throughout the Imperium.


Take A Few Moments And Leave A Comment - Tell Me What You Think About The Best Ever Science Fiction Books

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    • ameycoleman profile image

      Amey Coleman 3 years ago from Missouri

      @anonymous: I am a female author that would love to be on this list. :)

    • mcsburlea profile image

      mcsburlea 4 years ago

      great list

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      Eight of the ten books you post as the best, I read in the form of books. The other two see as pictures.

    • OUTFOXprevention1 profile image

      OUTFOXprevention1 4 years ago

      Great list! Thanks for sharing.

    • ManfromModesto LM profile image

      ManfromModesto LM 4 years ago

      @anonymous: Ah! Good mention. Definitely an amazing book...enthralled my young mind for years.

    • ManfromModesto LM profile image

      ManfromModesto LM 4 years ago

      Some good picks. The top 2 are definitely great. I have not read most of these... might just pick up some!

    • profile image

      Pascal_h 4 years ago

      @anonymous: No doubt...good choice.

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      Sad to see that there are no books written by female authors on this list...Wrinkle in Time anyone?

    • kabbalah lm profile image

      kabbalah lm 4 years ago

      I like science fiction

    • bibliopola profile image

      Işın Tuzcular 5 years ago from Istanbul

      Great list:)) I also like Ursula Le Guin. Her books like A wizard of Earthsea or the disposed are wonderful.

    • geoffhoff profile image

      geoffhoff 5 years ago

      Making a top 15 list is always fraught with peril. You're bound to not include books others love and to include some others don't love so much. Do I agree? Some. Disagree? Some. All in all, you did a good job.

    • anatpenini profile image

      anatpenini 5 years ago

      Anything written by Stephen King is a great Science Fiction Book!

    • SadSquid profile image

      SadSquid 5 years ago

      I'm glad you've included the Hitchhiker's Guide, one of my absolute favourites, but come on, a list of top science fiction books without Iain M. Banks?

    • egdcltd lm profile image

      egdcltd lm 5 years ago

      I've read twelve of those. I haven't read Gateway, Do Android's Dream of Electric Sheep? or Dune - I've never managed to get anywhere with any of the Dune series.

    • SandraWilson LM profile image

      SandraWilson LM 5 years ago

      Images are great and some great books are listed though I don't necessarily agree with this top 10. To each his own, I guess.

    • tonybonura profile image

      Tony Bonura 5 years ago from Tickfaw, Louisiana

      I agree for the most part. I've even read most of these. I agree with Dune and might even add one or two of the sequels, but then they started getting too weird even for me. And that's saying something.


    • GenWatcher LM profile image

      GenWatcher LM 5 years ago

      Asa a big fan of Frank Herbert's work, itr's great to see Dune ranked this way!

    • official-salmon profile image

      official-salmon 5 years ago

      Good suggestions! I really want to check out Ringworld now.

    • profile image

      ellies lm 5 years ago

      Excellent list...Excellent Photos!

    • irminia profile image

      irminia 5 years ago

      Great list, I've read many of them - just to see from your list, how compelling must be the ones that I didn't read yet.

    • captainj88 profile image

      Leah J. Hileman 5 years ago from East Berlin, PA, USA

      Great list. Good suggestions for people just becoming familiar with the genre.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      @anonymous: Good call man. I think that series got me into sci fi and reading in general

    • i Dia1 profile image

      i Dia1 5 years ago

      My favorite is 2001. I will have to check out some of the others.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      How about heir to the empire by Timothy Zahn?

    • profile image

      VatsalMakhija 5 years ago

      Thanks for the list! There are many here I'd like to read.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Why is 'Stranger in a Strange Land' always on best of SF lists, it's not even Heinlein's best.

    • profile image

      Shadrosky 5 years ago

      Thanks for the suggestions! I'll have to seek these out.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Ender's Game is great. No question. Just not sure you could put it as 2nd best ever. I'm not even sure it should make the top 10.

    • mojoCNYartist profile image

      Dan 5 years ago from CNY

      nice choices. Especially for the #1. :D

    • Elares profile image

      Elares 5 years ago

      Thank you for including Hitchhiker's. From the day it was recommended to me by my 8th grade English teacher, I was hooked.....and I've never been without my towel since :)

    • profile image

      Gala98 5 years ago

      great to see Ender's Game at #2 - never met anyone who's even heard of it, let alone read it! It kept me gripped the whole way thru & I missed an appointment because I couldn't put t down!

    • profile image

      PaulRyan 5 years ago

      Nice, it has given me some good ideas for SF books to check out.

    • TheGutterMonkey profile image

      The Gutter Monkey 5 years ago

      Contact by the great Carl Sagan. C'monnnn!

    • profile image

      cmadden 5 years ago

      I've read all but one - pretty decent list.

    • Vortrek Grafix profile image

      Vortrek Grafix 5 years ago

      Excellent stuff. Always loved science fiction, especially when it builds on established science and dares to speculate beyond its known parameters. All the great inventors throughout history had to be able to think speculatively before they actually created a novel idea.

    • Linda Pogue profile image

      Linda Pogue 5 years ago from Missouri

      Pretty good selection, though I personally don't care much for the Dune books. Almost all Robert Heinlein and Orson Scott Card's Ender series are some of the best I have read.

    • Elsie Hagley profile image

      Elsie Hagley 5 years ago from New Zealand

      Great selection of science fiction books. Have not read any of them,so some great reading for me. Thanks for sharing.

    • Steve Dizmon profile image

      Steve Dizmon 5 years ago from Nashville, TN

      I have read all but one of the books on your excellent list. I read the Lensman Series in the 1950s and had forgotten about them until the reference above. Thanks for the reminder.

    • Country-Sunshine profile image

      Country Sunshine 5 years ago from Texas

      Isaac Asimov, Robert Heinlein and Ray Bradbury are all on your list, so I guess you know what you are talking about! ;-) Great page. Thanks for sharing!

    • Elric22 profile image

      Elric22 5 years ago

      Love the sci-fi artwork here. Well done!

    • writergrey profile image

      writergrey 5 years ago

      Fahrenheit 451! I love that book. It's also very nice to see Stranger in a Stranger Land on your list.

    • profile image

      jaartist29 5 years ago

      Had never heard of "E E Doc Smith" before. Thanks for the enlightenment. Will check him out sometime. Thanks for including "Dune". I read the original trilogy three times in high school. "The War Of The Worlds" and "The Time Machine", two classics that never get old (and seem to be remade a lot. 3D next?).

    • Vikk Simmons profile image

      'Vikk Simmons 6 years ago from Houston

      I'm delighted to find 3 of my top favorites listed. I cut my teeth on The Lensmen series but I never hear anyone talk about it. Foundation was a major favorite as was, of course, Dune. Of course, anything by Wells and Bradbury makes me happy. Bradbury, he makes the pages sing.

    • Technospunky profile image

      Technospunky 6 years ago

      thank you for your list, there is actually a couple on there i have not read.

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      Would have to add Hogan's "Inherit the Stars"

    • jtmcwill profile image

      jtmcwill 6 years ago

      Starship Troopers. Classic.

    • profile image

      TravelingRae 6 years ago

      I don't disagree that these books are all great, but Marion Zimmer Bradley's The Endless Universe (rewrite of The Endless Voyage) would belong on my top 10 list.

    • profile image

      Science-Fiction-Fan 6 years ago

      Asimov must be the greatest SciFi writer ever and Philip K Dick is in a class of his own

    • profile image

      Shadrosky 6 years ago

      Forever War is A++!

    • SeanVernall LM profile image

      SeanVernall LM 6 years ago

      Some great books in that list, my favourites are 'Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep' and 'Fahrenheit 451'. I would have also added 'Make Room! Make Room!' by Harry Harrison.

    • axiomsedge profile image

      axiomsedge 6 years ago

      Don't quite agree with the order, but pretty much every one of those books deserves a place among the pinnacle of Science Fiction literature (except maybe Lensmen, good pulp fiction, but not Top 15 worthy). Props for having the Hitchhiker's Guide that high up on the list.

    • profile image

      legangles 6 years ago

      Read sooo much scifi when I was younger, less now but a good scifi book is still worth its weight in gold, in my eyes at least....

    • pumpnut lm profile image

      pumpnut lm 7 years ago

      As an epic novel series Dune is really good. Why, Why, Why do they keep butchering it on the screen?