Something Good to Read

Note: This is a list of books I would generally recommend, not a list of all the reasonably good books I’ve ever read. 

Have I missed something brilliant? Leave a comment with your reading recommendations.


Speculative Fiction

*Anything that Ted Chiang has written

1984 by George Orwell (science fiction, dystopia)

Ammonite by Nicola Griffith (science fiction)

Black Ships by Jo Graham (historical fantasy)

The Diamond Age: Or, a Young Lady’s Illustrated Primer by Neal Stephenson (science fiction/cyberpunk)

Deerskin by Robin McKinley (fantasy)

The Dispossessed by Ursula K. LeGuin (science fiction)

Dreaming the Eagle by Manda Scott (historical fantasy)

Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card (science fiction)

The Farseer Trilogy by Robin Hobb (Assassin’s Apprentice, Royal Assasin, and Assasin’s Quest) by Robin Hobb  (fantasy)

Firethorn by Sarah Micklem (historical fiction)

A Fistful of Sky by Nina Kiriki Hoffman

The Goose Girl by Shannon Hale (YA, fantasy)

Grass by Sheri S. Tepper (science fiction)

The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood (science fiction, dystopia)

The Inheritance and Other Stories by Robin Hobb/Megan Lindholm (mostly fantasy)

The Inheritance Trilogy (The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms, The Broken Kingdoms, and The Kingdom of the Gods) by N.K. Jemisin (fantasy)

The Mists of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley (historical fantasy)

Past the Size of Dreaming by Nina Kiriki Hoffman

The Psalms of Herod (and the sequel, The Sword of Mary) by Esther N. Friesner (dystopia)

A Red Heart of Memories by Nina Kiriki Hoffman

Santa Olivia by Jacqueline Carey (science fiction, dystopia)

Space Merchants by Frederik Pohl and Cyril M. Kornbluth

Spin by Robert Charles Wilson (science fiction)

Sunshine by Robin McKinley (fantasy)

The Telling by Ursula K. LeGuin (science fiction)

The Women’s Press Book of New Myth and Magic Ed. by Helen Windrath (mostly fantasy)

A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle (hard to categorize, science fiction)



Young Adult (YA) Speculative Fiction of Note

 If I think a book stands as something I would recommend regardless of it’s YA status, I’ve posted it above. If it’s one I’ve enjoyed within the category of YA specifically, it’s listed here. 

Also, a warning: some of these I have not read since I was in middle-school.


The Book of Blood and Shadow by Robin Wasserman

Kill Me Softly by Sarah Cross

The Lunar Chronicles (Cinder, Scarlet, Cress, and one I haven’t read yet) by marissa Meyers

The Ordinary Princess by M. M. Kay

Spindle’s End by Robin McKinley

The Song of the Lioness Quartet (Alanna: The First Adventure, In the Hand of the Goddess, The Woman Who Rides Like a Man, Lioness Rampant) by Tamora Pierce

Wicked Lovely (and Ink Exchange) by Melissa Mar


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