Hard Science Fiction Book ListsWhen done right, the result is a story that keeps the reader as engaged intellectually as they are emotionally. These hard science fiction novels are some of our favorites. They're spectacular places to start if you're searching for a sci-fi story that satisfies your brain and your yearnings for intergalactic adventure. In the series, The Way is a tunnel through space-time entered via a hollowed-out asteroid called the Thistledown. In Legacy , set years before Eon , a group of human colonists use The Way to set foot on a forbidden planet called Lamarkia. There they find life forms never known before, including a single genetic entity that can take many forms, and even span a continent.
Best Science Fiction Books
Hard science fiction is a category of science fiction characterized by concern for scientific accuracy and logic. Schuyler Miller in a review of John W. The term is formed by analogy to the popular distinction between the "hard" natural and "soft" social sciences. Science fiction critic Gary Westfahl argues that neither term is part of a rigorous taxonomy ; instead they are approximate ways of characterizing stories that reviewers and commentators have found useful. Stories revolving around scientific and technical consistency were written as early as the s with the publication of Jules Verne 's Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea in , among other stories. The attention to detail in Verne's work became an inspiration for many future scientists and explorers, although Verne himself denied writing as a scientist or seriously predicting machines and technology of the future.
There exists a common misconception that all science fiction is fantastical. That all sci-fi takes place in a universe where ships can travel faster than light and magical aliens populate the stars. This is hard science fiction. Hard science fiction exists inside the realm of scientific possibility. That is, anything that occurs in the story is not outside the known physical laws of the universe. In these stories, there is often an emphasis on this accuracy. In addition, a massive research load often goes into its implementation.
Are you the type of person that likes your science fiction heavy on the science? Get annoyed by the hand-waving attempts to allow for faster-than-light travel or inter-species breeding? We've got a run-down of the top twenty five hard science fiction books that are exactly what you're looking for. For those who don't recognize the term, hard sci fi is a subgenre of science fiction that puts the focus on the science - lots of technical detail, realistic explanations and maybe if you're lucky, one or two equations! Now that's not to say it doesn't invent anything new, and it certainly doesn't mean you have to reject anything that might conceivably throw a spanner in the works speed of light constant, I'm looking at you but whatever it does, it has to be theoretically possible and make sense given known constraints. Sound like your sort of thing?
Hard science fiction is characterized by an emphasis on scientific accuracy or technical detail, or on both. Not since Isaac Asimov has anyone combined SF and mystery so well.
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Skip to main content. - From the very beginning we have looked to the stars and dreamed of reaching them, and stories about how we get there and what comes next are a fundamental part of that dream. Good science fiction can amaze and motivate, warn, raise questions and spark the imagination, inspiring human creativity and each new generation of stargazers.
As we announced earlier , Technology Review will publish TR:SF , a collection of original science fiction stories, in the fall. The stories will all be near-future, hard science fiction, inspired by the kinds of emerging technologies we see in our coverage at Technology Review. Do you think we got any wrong? What are your favorites? Tells us in the comments below. Stephen Cass. Ten titles that inspired Technology Review to publish its own collection of sci-fi stories.