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Science Fiction Books Stories

Since the publication of the first-ever sci-fi book—arguably Mary Shelley’s 1818 novel Frankenstein—the genre has been in constant dialogue with our present. Sci-fi books encourage readers to envision new realities, and often prove prescient, both in imagining tech that eventually becomes real, and predicting events that come to pass.

The breadth of the genre can make it seem intimidating to new readers, but we recommend 50 of the best sci-fi novels ever to start your reading voyage. Or, you can explore sci-fi’s eras in chronological order, from the early classics by authors such as Jules Verne and H.G Wells and the so-called Golden Age of Sci-Fi, to the New Wave, to more recent must-reads from the past few decades. 

Alternatively, it’s possible to break your sci-fi book exploration down into subgenres. Do you prefer interstellar epics with drama on a galactic scale? Consider space opera. Do you want your stories to be grounded in reality and natural sciences? Then hard sci-fi is probably for you.

Or perhaps you’re a veteran sci-fi reader whose shelves are heavy with staples of the genre. In that case, The Portalist recommends hidden gems and underrated books to complete your collection. 

Regardless of where you are on your sci-fi reading journey, The Portalist’s sci-fi book stories can guide you on your voyage among the stars 

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Stranger Things 2 Turned Its View of Authority Upside Down

In its second season, Netflix's runaway hit "Stranger Things" continued to challenge sci-fi and horror tropes.

Toshi Reagon on Adapting Parable of the Sower for the Stage and the Urgency of Butler's Work

The librettist, composer, and music director of the Parable of the Sower opera shares her thoughts on Octavia E. Butler's legacy and the potential of theater to activate change.

15 Cat Books in Sci-Fi and Fantasy for You to Read Right Meow

If you need a feline fix, we’ll help you find your purr-fect read.

Welcome to Night Vale's Jeffrey Cranor Reveals His Inspirations

The author and podcaster discusses the new novel "It Devours," the Denver International Airport, and the appeal of the inexplicable.

Triumphant Musical Adaptation Shows the Power of Butler's Parable of the Sower

One of Octavia E. Butler's editors shares how a new opera highlights the prescience and beauty of the late author's dystopian masterpiece.

9 Space Opera Books Featuring Powerful Heroines

Double the X chromosomes, double the badassery.

[CLOSED] NYCC Fans: Download Your Free Book Here

We partnered with award-winning science fiction author Greg Bear to create this special five-book collection. Get it for FREE when you sign up for The Portalist newsletter!

First Trailer for Annihilation Promises to Blow Our Minds

The adaptation of Jeff Vandermeer's sci-fi horror novel looks just as chilling and thought-provoking as its source material.

8 Books That Will Make You Fall for Hard Science Fiction

Get hooked on science fiction that's rooted in the facts.

Shocking Depictions of the Future from Sci-Fi and Fantasy

From dystopian fantasy worlds to apocalyptic science fiction, sometimes books give us a very disturbing look at a possible future.

Legendary Author Joe Haldeman Shares the Story Behind The Forever War

Although considered a classic today, "The Forever War" was at first deemed unpublishable—partially because it dared to include female characters.

Philip José Farmer's Books Are More Relevant Than Ever

Thirty years after it first came out, Philip José Farmer's "Dayworld" continues to resonate with modern readers.

Science Fiction Has Won the War

Best-selling author Greg Bear on the genre’s new ‘golden age.'

10 Female SF/F Authors and the Stories Behind Their Pen Names

Do you know the true identities of the authors penning your favorite science fiction and fantasy novels? 

Grand Master Brian W. Aldiss Passes Away at 92

Remembering the exceptional science fiction author.