Sci fi books have been around for as long as people have enjoyed reading. However, there are some books that stand out from the rest. These influential sci fi books not only shaped popular culture but also changed how we view our world and the future of technology. Here’s a list of some of the best sci fi writers of all time the most influential science fiction books of all time:
The Time Machine by H.G. Wells
The Time Machine is a novel by H.G. Wells, first published in 1895. It describes a dystopia of the distant future, when mankind has evolved into two distinct species: the gentle Eloi and their ape-like Morlocks, who live underground and survive off the Eloi’s scraps (although they are sometimes described as an alternative evolution). The Time Machine is generally credited with popularizing the concept of time travel by using a vehicle to move through time instead of moving forward or backward in space.
The book is written in an episodic format and includes descriptions of historical events from many different eras including The Great Fire of London, Victorian Britain and Europe during World War II (World War I was before Wells’ birth so this would be impossible for him to describe), among others.
Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
Brave New World is another classic piece of science fiction that was written in 1931 and takes place in the future, or at least a future where people are genetically engineered and conditioned to live in a world without war, pain, suffering or disease. This book is famous for exploring the idea of a utopia where everyone is happy but also completely miserable.The book focuses on a man named John who was born in this world but decides to leave and go back to the “primitive” world. He ends up meeting two groups of people: one that lives in an ocean and one that lives in the forest, neither of which is happy with their lifestyle.
George Orwell’s 1984
While this list is in no way an exhaustive collection of the most influential science fiction books of all time, it does include many of the most important works in the genre. As a whole, these novels helped to inspire generations of writers and drive the conversation around some of humanity’s most pressing questions about what it means to be human and how we might survive in a future that remains relatively unknown.
While 1984 may not be the first novel written in English (that honor belongs to Geoffrey Chaucer’s The Canterbury Tales), Orwell’s work was certainly one of its most popular at the time. It was published shortly after World War II ended and became an instant bestseller; within months it had sold over half a million copies—a rare feat at that time.
1984 serves as an early warning on totalitarianism, with Big Brother serving as a stand-in for Stalinist Russia. The book touches on themes that are still relevant today: privacy issues raised by technology like surveillance cameras; censorship; public opinion being shaped through propaganda; government corruption; class struggle between citizens versus those who rule over them; etc…
A Canticle for Liebowitz by Walter M. Miller Jr.
This post-apocalyptic novel is set in a monastery during the aftermath of a nuclear war. It was written by Walter M. Miller Jr., who also wrote A Canticle for Leibowitz while he was a student at the University of Michigan. The book won both Hugo and Nebula Awards in 1961, as well as other awards such as New York Times bestseller list and Locus Award for Best Novel (tied with Stranger In A Strange Land).
The Forever War by Joe Haldeman
This is a book about the future. It was written in the 1970s, and it was the first of its kind. The author Joe Haldeman, who wrote this book while still serving as a soldier in Vietnam, went on to win both Hugo and Nebula awards for his work. This story is based on life experiences he had as well as those of other people he knew.
The Forever War has been adapted into an animated film by Warner Brothers Animation and Legendary Entertainment, but it’s also worth noting that there are plans for a live-action version too!
American Gods by Neil Gaiman
Published in 2001, this book won the Hugo and Nebula Awards for Best Novel. It was also adapted into a TV series by Starz in 2017. In addition to these achievements, American Gods has been translated into over 30 languages since its release!
Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? By Philip K Dick
“Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?” is a book about the future. It’s a book about humans and androids. It’s also a book about love, loss, and what it means to be human. The story follows Rick Deckard, a bounty hunter who is tasked with hunting down and killing “andys.” These are androids that have gone rogue—living among humans and pretending to be human. However, when Deckard comes across an android named Rachel who seems more human than any other android he’s ever seen before, he begins to question whether or not she is actually real.
These books influenced sci fi culture and the world in general
- The Foundation Trilogy by Isaac Asimov
- Childhood’s End by Arthur C. Clarke
- Stranger in a Strange Land by Robert A. Heinlein
- Dune by Frank Herbert
- Neuromancer by William Gibson
We hope that you have enjoyed reading about these influential sci fi books. If you want to read more scifi content visit Yield To The People, where they have hundreds of reviews and recommendations, like famous sci fi artists. They are great reads and helped shape the genre into what we know today.