Science Fiction has been dazzling audiences since the 1800s with its futuristic predictions and societal critique. These books are escapes to distant planets or futures, yet reminders of what is wrong with the way things are in our current world. They scare and intrigue us because while they look foreign at first, these great writer’s predictions are rarely farfetched. Here are five books that are great beginner novels if you are looking to enter the world of Science Fiction.
This is the best intro book to get into Science Fiction because on top of having everything that makes this genre great, this book is just so much fun! Douglas Adams’ Monty Python-esque humor and wit blend beautifully with galaxy exploration for this journey through the cosmos with Arthur Dent and Ford Perfect. You’ll laugh until it hurts while also reading this clever satire and learning the answer to the ultimate question of life, the universe, and everything.
Any book lover’s worst nightmare: the government bans books and independent thought. This is a story that reminds us why we love books: they expand our minds, expose us to different views and are the best way to pass the time. We root for Montag as he starts to discover this power and joy that he himself used to try to destroy.
Like most Science Fiction, this book is so many things in one. Vonnegut’s voice is always very strong in his writing: his jokes, views on war, and thoughts on narrative structure come up strongly throughout this short funny novel. What sounds better than an anti-war novel mixed with time travel and a backward way of storytelling? Similar to Hitchhiker’s Guide, Vonnegut mixes humor with Sci-Fi and the depressing images of war that he experienced firsthand in World War II.
H.G. Wells’ story about a man who becomes stranded on an island with a strange doctor and weird screams in the night. Different from most Sci-Fi novels, this story deals with the ethics of scientific experimentation on animals and where humans stand compared other forms of life. When you’re done exploring the planets, you can deal with an ethical problem we often ignore.
Atwood’s female dystopia is a thrilling, yet sad read as women in the world of Gilead have lost all agency. Our protagonist, Offred, must survive a totalitarian government that forces her to birth babies for the Commander. We are excited to finally see this literary masterpiece on TV, so be sure to read it before the Hulu series airs.
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