The Best Science Fiction Books For Star Wars Fanatics

Yes, May 4th marks Star Wars Day, a day when Star Wars fans from Earth to Endor celebrate the sci-fi franchise. What better way to start than with a good book.

Book Culture Comics & Graphic Novels Fantasy Graphic Novels Just For Fun On This Day Pop Culture Recommendations Science Fiction

Star Wars made the concept of the space opera genre into a basis for a blockbuster movie series. But sometimes, instead of rewatching this amazing and captivating series, you want something new and fresh. Lucky for you, here are plenty of books that use a similar formula and setting, and others that are even part of the same universe. For aspiring Jedi who want to experience some literature that features themes and stories similar to the original trilogy, there are plenty of great places to get started. So, without further ado, we present our list of books to fill your ‘Star Wars’ craving.

And remember, May the Fourth be with you!

Dune by Frank Herbert


Dune has been described as science fiction’s answer to The Lord of the Rings in terms of scale and language, and “Star Wars for grown-ups” when it comes to demographics. The people of this universe have outlawed virtually all forms of externalized memory, relying instead on the abilities of the human mind as opposed to technology. The Bene Gesserit Order could be compared to either Sith or Jedi Orders, depending on who is asked.

More than 10,000 years into the future, human beings have colonized the known universe, which is controlled by an Emperor and a number of noble houses. In a bid to take the powerful and popular House Atreides down a few pegs, the Emperor forges a secret bond with House Harkonnen, the nobles who control the spice planet of Arrakis. The story isn’t just about Paul Atreides, the Chosen Messiah, but also his rule and dynasty.

Foundation by Isaac Asimov


It makes perfect sense that fans of Star Wars would want to read the science fiction that inspired part of the franchise, specifically the Jedi Order. Foundation is the name of the planet at the focus of this novel’s plot, where the first “psycho-historian” is trying to preserve the knowledge of the Galactic Empire before it is completely destroyed by barbarian hordes. If it sounds a lot like the story of the fall of the Roman Empire, that’s because Asimov deliberately based the book on that era in history.

For twelve thousand years the Galactic Empire has ruled supreme. Now it is dying. But only Hari Seldon, creator of the revolutionary science of psychohistory, can see into the future—to a dark age of ignorance, barbarism, and warfare that will last thirty thousand years. To preserve knowledge and save humankind, Seldon gathers the best minds in the Empire—both scientists and scholars—and brings them to a bleak planet at the edge of the galaxy to serve as a beacon of hope for future generations. He calls his sanctuary the Foundation. 

Avalon by Mindee Arnett


Jeth Seagrave and his crew of teenage mercenaries have survived in this world by stealing unsecured meta tech, and they’re damn good at it. Jeth doesn’t care about politics or the law; all he cares about is earning enough money to buy back his parents’ ship, Avalon, from his crime-boss employer and getting himself and his sister, Lizzie, the heck out of Dodge. But when Jeth finds himself in possession of information that both the crime bosses and the government are willing to kill for, he is going to have to ask himself how far he’ll go to get the freedom he’s wanted for so long.

And let’s just say that this book can definitely replace the Han Solo movie…

Splinter of the Mind’s Eye by Alan Dean Foster


Star Wars fans once thought that if George Lucas made another movie, it would have to be an adaptation of what could be the most popular book in the Star Wars franchise. Splinter of the Mind’s Eye is a definite fan favorite, critically acclaimed, and it was a must-read for anyone who considered themselves a hard-core fan in the days before the prequels. It was also the first book in what would become a huge library of media based on the Star Wars expanded universe.

It was not to be, because George Lucas wanted a kid and a Gungan instead, and legions of bitter fans will never forgive him. In the new age of stand-alone movies and streaming services, however, this novel might still have a chance. Before that day comes, though, fans of the franchise should give it a read.

Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card


Obviously, we have to mention the original outer space YA novel. Andrew “Ender” Wiggin thinks he is playing computer-simulated war games; he is, in fact, engaged in something far more desperate. The result of genetic experimentation, Ender may be the military genius Earth desperately needs in a war against an alien enemy seeking to destroy all human life. The only way to find out is to throw Ender into ever harsher training, to chip away and find the diamond inside, or destroy him utterly. Ender Wiggin is six years old when it begins. He will grow up fast.

But Ender is not the only result of the experiment…

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams


Seconds before the Earth is demolished to make way for a galactic freeway, Arthur Dent is plucked off the planet by his friend Ford Prefect, a researcher for the revised edition of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy who, for the last fifteen years, has been posing as an out-of-work actor.

Together this dynamic pair begin a journey through space aided by quotes from The Hitchhiker’s Guide (“A towel is about the most massively useful thing an interstellar hitchhiker can have”) and a galaxy-full of fellow travelers: Zaphod Beeblebrox–the two-headed, three-armed ex-hippie and totally out-to-lunch president of the galaxy; Trillian, Zaphod’s girlfriend (formally Tricia McMillan), whom Arthur tried to pick up at a cocktail party once upon a time zone; Marvin, a paranoid, brilliant, and chronically depressed robot; Veet Voojagig, a former graduate student who is obsessed with the disappearance of all the ballpoint pens he bought over the years.

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy is a hilarious, irreverent romp through space perfect for Star Wars fans who love the franchise’s lighthearted moments and witty dialogue.


For more “May the Fourth be with you” recommendations, click here!