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Stepping into Sci-fi: Books for Beginners

Interested in reading sci-fi but not sure where to begin? You don’t have to be a rocket scientist or an interdimensional traveler to enjoy this genre of stories. To help you on your mission, here are some books that’ll get you started as you journey into the technological future, battle intergalactic monsters, and complete life or death missions on distant planets. Step through the reading portal for your next adventure.

What’s scarier than waking up and not knowing who you are? How about waking up in a space shuttle out in the universe not remembering anything? Throw in a life or death mission and you’re got the beginning of the sci-fi mystery Project Hail Mary.

Interdimensional travel can get a little complicated, however, you don’t have to be a hardcore sci-fi fan to enjoy Dean Koontz’s book Elsewhere. Its heroes are thrown into a mission they never expected and will travel to places utterly unknown, but the reward is high and the stakes higher. Family is on the line…as is the fate of the world.

A telekinetic adult just trying to live life with the occasional top-secret government mission gets framed for a murder that she didn’t commit. It’s superhero sci-fi with a mix of murder mystery spelling possible doom for her hometown. Will she clear her name in time or will she and Los Angeles go up in flames? Read Girl who could move sh*t with her mind to find out.

Arguably a sci-fi classic, Douglas Adams’ book isn’t a “deep” or “serious” novel, but it is comical, quirky, enjoyable, and a great book for a reader new to sci-fi.

Tragedy turns to miraculous at a fateful ball game. The world learns of Ava’s ability to supernaturally heal those around her, but her gift has a price and now she’s on the hunt for a cure. Will her talent eventually spell her death or will she find a way to change herself not just for her own survival but for the world’s?

While sci-fi books aren’t generally known as love stories, Bionic builds a story of a hopeless quest for love fused with mechanical parts and firing electrodes. Will warm human love keep the sterile mechanisms of technology running for our characters to stay alive? Pick up the book to find out in this futuristic graphic novel.

Space colonizing is a common idea in sci-fi, but what happens when survival in that colony begins to become a frozen waking nightmare? Be sure to bring your coat, because this graphic novel tells the tale of a community trying to survive in an environment that is less than ideal.

Think an animal sanctuary, but on an alternate earth in another dimension…oh, and the animals…well, think Godzilla-esque in shape and size. Ready to join The Kaiju Preservation Society? While you won’t be shipped off to space like the story’s main character, you can read this novel from the safety our earth and dimension. John Scalzi’s book blends sci-fi, a unique kind of animal activism, and of course, the fate of the universe as we know it.

If you’re a fan of George R. R Martin, writer of the Game of Thrones series, you might be interested in his graphic novel, Starport. If you’re new to sci-fi (and are also a fan of police procedurals) then this book is a good starting point. Imagine Chicago police making their regular patrols, only instead of human citizens, there happens to be extra-terrestrial visitors roaming about. Suddenly, the force has a whole new set of problems to deal with while protecting the new hub for intergalactic commerce and diplomacy.

One of the most famous sci-fi authors, Octavia Butler, presents a novel with not only superhuman power, artificial life, and a tyrant obsessed with total domination but an unlikely hero who will either rise to power for a better world or will fall in a brutal and alien world.  If you’re looking to start with famous writers of the genre try out Mind of my Mind.