In some ways, the novel is hopeful because it shows that humanity will figure out a way to adapt with the terrifying threat of climate change. This book is fascinating for New Yorkers, but anyone with an interest in climate change and Robinson's work will like it.
Robinson has built a New York City that people would still want to live in. By Jeff VanderMeer. Exploring the world of Borne is like navigating a video game. You don't immediately know what happened to the city that the characters reside in, or what the rules are, but the protagonist, Rachel, slowly leads us through a ravaged city with obstacles at every corner.
She first discovers the titular creature on a giant engineered bear named Mord. Mord was created by the Company, a biotech firm that lost control of its creations. There are many more imaginative and frightening aspects of this world, including beetles that can remove and add memories when put in an ear and worms that can release drugs inside your body.
VanderMeer is also the author of the popular Southern Reach Trilogy. If you liked that series, you'll probably like his new novel. Borne shows that VanderMeer is one of the strongest sci-fi writers of today. His work is accessible, fun, and filled with both interesting human and non-human characters. Plus, both his trilogy and Borne feature complex female protagonists, and we can always use more of those.
By Cory Doctorow. Walkaway is yet another sci-fi novel that looks at our future world affected by climate change. But that's not the only issue that the novel is interested in exploring. Doctorow's latest also covers capitalism, the gap between the wealthiest people and the poorest people, fluid sexuality, and 3D printing. It's a world that seems shockingly realist if you're reading tech headlines.
Surprisingly, Doctorow doesn't see his work as a dystopian novel. In fact, he thinks it's precisely the opposite. Despite depicting a world that is changed by our own technological advancements and ideologies, Doctorow is optimistic about future generations of humans.
Walkaway follows characters who do just that—they walk away from society in search of something better. As the literary world keeps churning out dystopian novels, it's a relief that they're not all doom and gloom. By Kameron Hurley. Space operas are so commonplace in the sci-fi world that they can seem overdone with no new ideas left. But The Stars Are Legion is like a magnificent storm tearing through the genre.
Its style and pacing is reminiscent of old school sci-fi stories, while its characters are people that you'll actually care about. One big twist, though—all the people are women.
The story becomes essentially Mad Max: Fury Road in space. We are first introduced to Zan, who wakes up in a medical bay not remembering much of her life. That's the only memory I know for certain is mine.
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The rest is a gory blackness," she says in the novel's opening. Zan then meets Jayd, who claims to be her sister. As the novel progresses, we learn what the Legion really is and why people would want to escape it, all through highly immersive, action-packed pages. By Mur Lafferty. Six Wakes begins with a list of laws related to cloning. Number 1: "It is unlawful to create more than one clone of a person at a time. Lafferty drops readers right into the action: a woman on a spaceship waking up to discover that she has been cloned. But she doesn't know how she originally died, prompting the rebirth.
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Her crewmates were also cloned. The central mystery of the novel is who killed them, and Lafferty deftly shows us who these characters were before they died, leading up the finding out the identity of the killer. It's a murder mystery set in the year , which is just as cool and thrilling as it sounds.
By Elan Mastai. Mastai's debut novel taps into our past visions of the future—namely a Jetsons-esque utopia. His main protagonist, Tom Barren, claims that this kind of future actually came to be, until something happened and we got stuck in the current world we live in today, where we have tech like drones but we don't travel using jetpacks. Clearly, some sort of time travel took place. The novel pokes fun at our nostalgic look at an ideal future, and it includes some amusing elements in this utopia, such as avocados that never bruise and turn brown. The protagonist is witty, charming, and doesn't always make the best decisions—he states early on, "I am not a genius.
There is a love story at the core of this novel, and it impacts Tom's decisions about which world he wants to inhabit. It's probably one of the most light-hearted, easy-to-read sci-fi books on this list. By Sylvain Neuvel. Waking Gods is the sequel to Neuvel's Sleeping Giants. In the first book, a girl named Rose falls into a giant metal hand that is buried in the earth.
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As an adult, she became a physicist who dedicated her career to finding out the origins of the hand. Waking Gods takes place a decade after the events of the first book. But where there is light, there must be darkness—and so there was also the Iskari. The child of blood and moonlight. The destroyer. The death-bringer. These are the legends that Asha, daughter of the king of Firgaard, has grown up learning in hushed whispers, drawn to the forbidden figures of the past.
Asha conquers each dragon and brings its head to the king, but no kill can free her from the shackles that await at home: her betrothal to the cruel commandant, a man who holds the truth about her nature in his palm.
Surrounded by enemies, the once-great nation of Ravka has been torn in two by the Shadow Fold, a swath of near impenetrable darkness crawling with monsters who feast on human flesh. Now its fate may rest on the shoulders of one lonely refugee. Alina Starkov has never been good at anything. But when her regiment is attacked on the Fold and her best friend is brutally injured, Alina reveals a dormant power that saves his life—a power that could be the key to setting her war-ravaged country free. Wrenched from everything she knows, Alina is whisked away to the royal court to be trained as a member of the Grisha, the magical elite led by the mysterious Darkling.
Yet nothing in this lavish world is what it seems. With darkness looming and an entire kingdom depending on her untamed power, Alina will have to confront the secrets of the Grisha… and the secrets of her heart. In a land without magic, where the king rules with an iron hand, an assassin is summoned to the castle.
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She comes not to kill the king, but to win her freedom. Her name is Celaena Sardothien. The Crown Prince will provoke her. The Captain of the Guard will protect her. Betrothed since childhood to the prince of Mynaria, Princess Dennaleia has always known what her future holds. Her marriage will seal the alliance between Mynaria and her homeland, protecting her people from other hostile kingdoms. But Denna has a secret. She possesses an Affinity for fire—a dangerous gift for the future queen of a land where magic is forbidden.
Now Denna has to learn the ways of her new kingdom while trying to hide her growing magic. When a shocking assassination leaves the kingdom reeling, Mare and Denna reluctantly join forces to search for the culprit. But with dangerous conflict brewing that makes the alliance more important than ever, acting on their feelings could be deadly. Brienna desires only two things: to master her passion and to be chosen by a patron.
Growing up in Valenia at the renowned Magnalia House should have prepared her. While some are born with a talent for one of the five passions—art, music, dramatics, wit, and knowledge—Brienna struggled to find hers until she chose knowledge. Months later, her life takes an unexpected turn when a disgraced lord offers her patronage. Suspicious of his intent, she reluctantly accepts. But there is much more to his story, for there is a dangerous plot to overthrow the king of Maevana—the rival kingdom of Valenia—and restore the rightful queen, and her magic, to the throne.
Laia is a slave. Elias is a soldier.
Neither is free. Under the Martial Empire, defiance is met with death. Those who do not vow their blood and bodies to the Emperor risk the execution of their loved ones and the destruction of all they hold dear. It is in this brutal world, inspired by ancient Rome, that Laia lives with her grandparents and older brother. They do not challenge the Empire. He and Laia will soon realize that their destinies are intertwined—and that their choices will change the fate of the Empire itself.
When assassins ambush her best friend, the crown prince, Rielle Dardenne risks everything to save him, exposing her ability to perform all seven kinds of elemental magic. The only people who should possess this extraordinary power are a pair of prophesied queens: a queen of light and salvation and a queen of blood and destruction. To prove she is the Sun Queen, Rielle must endure seven trials to test her magic.