Book Review

My Top 5 Sci-Fi Picks!

It’s Monday! I hate life, I get to travel for 2.5 hours for a just under 2-hour choir rehearsal on Mondays in the very very cold night. Monday is not my friend it is an evil monster.

Anyway, I’m not quite done with my two current reads but you all will probably get two reviews from me this week, so, there’s that. I’ll also be doing a couple of other things that will hopefully pan out nicely! The Alienist has been so far the book I needed to lift my spirits after a roller coaster of anger from The Memory of Lost Dreams and I’m so thankful for that!

So, my top 5 favorite Sci-fi novels? Well, I’m going to do a countdown of them!

So starting from the bottom up…..

5. Speaker for the Dead

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Some sequels fall flat on their face and who knows you may think I’m crazy for loving this one. I have to say I believe Ender’s Game does best as a standalone novel in my opinion but I can’t help but love this book. Because on some level, I needed it. I needed to know about Ender later on, and I needed to know that he would be okay (or to at least find out if he wasn’t going to be). There are other books I do enjoy in the Ender-verse but none of them come close to this one or Ender’s Game. I did put it at number 5 because I do recognize its flaws and again though personally needed it for some more closure, it really wasn’t necessary (and the others even less so despite my enjoyment of them).
4. Dune

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Okay, okay, I know, this is one of the best sci-fi novels in existence, it is one of the most famous ones, and it is amazing, I do not argue that there’s a reason it is on my list. Why is it number 4? I didn’t always appreciate Paul, I actually think his Mom is so kickass and his sister too, one of the reasons I want to read other Dune novels, but, I am hesitant to do so. I’m sure I’ll get around to them eventually. Why do I love it? Well hello, sandworms! Cool desert people, prophecized heroes, awesome fight scenes, and mysterious powers and happenings! Again it’s on my top 5 for a reason, and though most call Frank Herbert the Father of Sci-Fi…I think it would be appropriate to remember he is indeed not, [COUGH COUGH, MARY SHELLEY=MOM, COUGH COUGH] but he does give us our modern Sci-Fi and we should remember that!

3. The Time Machine

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Come on. How could I not add it? TIME TRAVEL, GUYS. [I’m a huge Dr. Who fan as well, so…again, TIME TRAVEL] I really feel that this was the prime of its time and continues to be the prime of ours. I urge anyone who likes Sci-Fi to read this. It also gives us a future that gives us a taste of Utopia on the surface (totally dystopian though, I love it, so much). Wells was ahead of his time, he thought of things that of course didn’t really happen literally but hit close to home in a way that I don’t think most saw coming. I had to rate this higher than Dune for one simple and important fact, I enjoyed it more. He accomplished more things in fewer pages than Frank did as far as making the read better for me.

Alright, onward!
2. Ender’s Game

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Predictable? Probably. I know without the other works before it that Ender’s Game wouldn’t be possible but it still ranks above them and is one of my favorite novels ever, I’ve lent it out more than any other book and recommend it more than any other. Reading this in middle school [Sixth Grade to be specific, holy shit I’m old], it changed my world. Someone had lent it to me, one of my closest friends who I still love and adore so maybe part of the reason I love it so much is because I associate with her but it’s also the book I’ve reread the most. This has such an impact on kids at that preteen-young adult age (on adults too I’m sure) it gives you this sort of hope, if you feel like a ‘Third’ your whole life until that point, that being different can be amazing, it can be hard but it could lead you to do great things [and to not be afraid for thinking differently]. Admittedly I am no longer a big fan of Orson Scott Card himself but I still adore this book. It gives you everything you want in a sci-fi novel and that ending, ugh that ending.  We watch kids do things that adults forget they truly are capable of doing, and we see strategy and aliens and space military school…<3 I will never NOT love this book….so what could top it?….
1. The Alien Chronicles

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That’s right, I’m cheating. Whatcha gonna do about it? Huh?? My first pick? The Alien Chronicles, only one of the most beautiful and well-written trilogies that I have ever had the pleasure of reading. I read these just soon after Ender’s Game, lent to me by the same friend. These again just completely rocked my reading world. I mean these and Ender’s Game were pre-Harry Potter, so imagine just how crazy I was for them as we all -most of us- went crazy for Harry Potter! These, though not at all Christian, do have a very Moses/biblical like plot. We have the love between two beings, not quite sibling but more like soulmates in friendship, and then having to face them being ripped apart when one realizes their true past and the true history of what has happened to their enslaved people. The life that Ampris, our ‘Moses’ and Heroine, faces afterwards is everything that is beautiful and tragic and happy, I mean this trilogy brought me to tears and continues do so. The trilogy follows closely Ampris, her once beloved friend Israi, and Elrabin. The characters have so many emotions,  would say more so Ampris and Elrabin, they are full well rounded and just I can’t say enough about them, I’m gushing like the fangirl I am. This is called by some as a ‘Space Opera’ if you’re wondering more on the subgenre. I couldn’t just pick one out of the three, so I didn’t.

There you have it! My top 5!

Do you have any Sci-Fi favorites or recs for me? I’d love to hear them!

[I didn’t include Frankenstein because I still consider it more of a horror and overall I did not include Dystopia novels (The Time Machine was the closest one).]

By TheCaffeinatedReader

A Caffeinated Reader and Musician, destined to write lacklustre book reviews with the over-ample amount of free time.

28 replies on “My Top 5 Sci-Fi Picks!”

I don’t know why I’m always surprised when people make Scifi book lists and I don’t recognize any of them. I think all my favorite scifi books are about aliens or cyborgs. They’re my guilty pleasure OK? Some of my favorites are Lux series, Saga, Ice Planet Barbarians, The Host and The Lunar Chronicles.


I don’t think you could have a science fiction list without Orson Scott Card could you? Such a prolific author. Topping my list would have to be the book that introduced me to science fiction which is Ready Player One by Ernest Cline. It’s one of those crossover books that appeals to a wider range of readers really but mostly adult readers like myself sadly, I can imagine a lot of the pop culture references go over most readers heads.

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Dune is a classic.

I was so disappointed when I learned what an asshole Card is – Speaker for the Dead especially seemed like such a compassionate book and I liked Ender’s Game as well.

Ever read any Becky Chambers? She’s my favourite newer sci-fi author. Her books are wonderful comfort reads.

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I loved The Time Machine and Enders Game. I think I need to give Dune another go. I had tried it as an audiobook, but I think was getting distracted and it was keeping me from likign it. So I will try again!

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Would you still recommend Ender’s Game to a 20-something year old who has never read the book before? I remember trying it out once, I think at the end of my senior year of high school, and I gave up after a few pages or chapters because the writing was geared toward a much younger audience. I see that you read it in middle school, and that’s probably why you still love it so much (or at least part of why!) but do you think that an older audience could enjoy it as their first read as well?

Admittedly, I do tend to be picky if a novel is not challenging enough…

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My husband didn’t read it until he was 24, I think you have to keep in mind Ender’s age more than your own, and the challenge lies in dealing with how you feel about the things he and the other children have to do and his choices. Maybe more of a ‘moral’ challenge than a literary challenge. I say maybe try to give the first chapter another go if you ever get the chance, especially if you can grab it at the library and easily return it if it just doesn’t appeal to you 🙂 Thanks for asking my opinion!

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I’ve read very few sci-fi books thinking about it now, I’ve read Illuminae by Aimee Kaufman and Jay Kristoff (I think that’s right…hmmm) and These Broken Stars by Aimee Kaufman and Megean Spooner and I honestly think that’s it. I rarely pick up sci-fi books…I dunno why but I want to finish both of these series then I may snoop at other sci-fi books within the YA genre 🙂

I loved this list, it was super interesting as someone who doesn’t read sci-fi but I actually find the genre itself interesting. As there’s so much you can explore within the books and genre and draw parallels with our own world

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Across the Universe by Beth Revis is the YA series I have read and it’s meh buuut it has more to do with her writing style than her ideas. I will be checking out more YA stuff in general this year, I didn’t realize how man genres I neglected until I started reading everyone’s currents and tbrs lol


I’m not a huge fan of scifi, i’m more into fantasy O(-( so i don’t have any recs and can’t even think of one title that’s not on this list LOL my brother picked up enders game like 1-2 years ago and then told me to read it. it’s on my shelf, i want to read it but haven’t gotten around to it xD hg wells is also an author i need to read! for classics sake :3

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