Best Space Opera
This list features the best space opera books out there.
1 Hyperion (Hyperion Cantos, #1)
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4.16 of 5 stars 4.16 avg rating — 78,169 ratings
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2 Ender's Game (The Ender Qui...
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4.28 of 5 stars 4.28 avg rating — 631,705 ratings
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3 Dune (Dune Chronicles, #1)
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4.12 of 5 stars 4.12 avg rating — 365,959 ratings
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4 Foundation (Foundation, #1)
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4.05 of 5 stars 4.05 avg rating — 203,270 ratings
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5 Cassastar
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3.94 of 5 stars 3.94 avg rating — 240 ratings
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6 Cassafire
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4.26 of 5 stars 4.26 avg rating — 138 ratings
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7 The Fall of Hyperion (Hyper...
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4.14 of 5 stars 4.14 avg rating — 43,658 ratings
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8 Revelation Space (Revelatio...
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3.95 of 5 stars 3.95 avg rating — 22,176 ratings
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9 Pandora's Star (Commonwealt...
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4.21 of 5 stars 4.21 avg rating — 20,487 ratings
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10 Old Man's War (Old Man's Wa...
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4.21 of 5 stars 4.21 avg rating — 59,948 ratings
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11 The Reality Dysfunction (Ni...
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4.13 of 5 stars 4.13 avg rating — 14,947 ratings
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12 Consider Phlebas (Culture, #1)
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3.83 of 5 stars 3.83 avg rating — 31,569 ratings
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13 The Forever War (The Foreve...
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4.12 of 5 stars 4.12 avg rating — 65,024 ratings
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14 Starship Troopers
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3.97 of 5 stars 3.97 avg rating — 93,477 ratings
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15 Leviathan Wakes (Expanse, #1)
by
4.08 of 5 stars 4.08 avg rating — 25,385 ratings
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16 A Fire Upon the Deep (Zones...
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4.12 of 5 stars 4.12 avg rating — 25,983 ratings
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17 Endymion (Hyperion Cantos, #3)
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4.1 of 5 stars 4.10 avg rating — 20,344 ratings
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18 Starshine (Aurora Rising, #1)
by
4.3 of 5 stars 4.30 avg rating — 298 ratings
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19 Ringworld (Ringworld, #1)
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3.94 of 5 stars 3.94 avg rating — 55,152 ratings
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20 Judas Unchained (Commonweal...
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4.27 of 5 stars 4.27 avg rating — 15,110 ratings
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21 The Player of Games (Cultur...
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4.24 of 5 stars 4.24 avg rating — 27,384 ratings
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22 The Mote in God's Eye (Moti...
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4.04 of 5 stars 4.04 avg rating — 38,949 ratings
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23 On Basilisk Station (Honor ...
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4.09 of 5 stars 4.09 avg rating — 21,358 ratings
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24 Foundation and Empire (Foun...
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4.17 of 5 stars 4.17 avg rating — 80,454 ratings
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25 Rendezvous with Rama (Rama,...
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4.01 of 5 stars 4.01 avg rating — 66,388 ratings
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26 Second Foundation (Foundati...
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4.19 of 5 stars 4.19 avg rating — 72,981 ratings
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27 CassaStorm
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4.31 of 5 stars 4.31 avg rating — 68 ratings
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28 Ghost in the Machine (Corwi...
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3.94 of 5 stars 3.94 avg rating — 106 ratings
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29 The Rise of Endymion (Hyper...
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4.13 of 5 stars 4.13 avg rating — 20,738 ratings
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30 Heir to the Empire (Star Wa...
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4.07 of 5 stars 4.07 avg rating — 35,654 ratings
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31 Vertigo (Aurora Rising, #2)
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4.72 of 5 stars 4.72 avg rating — 64 ratings
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32 Surface Detail (Culture, #9)
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4.16 of 5 stars 4.16 avg rating — 11,189 ratings
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33 The Ultimate Hitchhiker's G...
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4.35 of 5 stars 4.35 avg rating — 188,390 ratings
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34 House of Suns
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4.14 of 5 stars 4.14 avg rating — 8,956 ratings
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35 The Dreaming Void (Void, #1)
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4.15 of 5 stars 4.15 avg rating — 11,222 ratings
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36 Use of Weapons (Culture, #3)
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4.17 of 5 stars 4.17 avg rating — 17,905 ratings
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37 Gateway (Heechee Saga, #1)
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4.05 of 5 stars 4.05 avg rating — 21,605 ratings
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38 The Evolutionary Void (Void...
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4.23 of 5 stars 4.23 avg rating — 9,470 ratings
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39 Moon 514: Blaze and the Whi...
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4.55 of 5 stars 4.55 avg rating — 11 ratings
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40 Look to Windward (Culture, #7)
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4.09 of 5 stars 4.09 avg rating — 10,360 ratings
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41 Dauntless (The Lost Fleet, #1)
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3.91 of 5 stars 3.91 avg rating — 13,003 ratings
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42 Neutron Star (Known Space)
by
4.07 of 5 stars 4.07 avg rating — 7,900 ratings
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43 2001: A Space Odyssey (Spac...
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4.05 of 5 stars 4.05 avg rating — 115,750 ratings
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44 Star Wars: From the Adventu...
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4.03 of 5 stars 4.03 avg rating — 8,666 ratings
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45 The Backworlds (Book 1)
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3.52 of 5 stars 3.52 avg rating — 220 ratings
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46 The Warrior's Apprentice (V...
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4.29 of 5 stars 4.29 avg rating — 11,626 ratings
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47 Dark Force Rising (Star War...
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4.1 of 5 stars 4.10 avg rating — 27,741 ratings
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48 Last Chance [Sunscapes Tril...
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4.52 of 5 stars 4.52 avg rating — 29 ratings
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49 Red Mars (Mars Trilogy, #1)
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3.8 of 5 stars 3.80 avg rating — 31,093 ratings
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50 When Earthlings Weep
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3.91 of 5 stars 3.91 avg rating — 43 ratings
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51 The Songs Of Distant Earth
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3.85 of 5 stars 3.85 avg rating — 6,548 ratings
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52 The Algebraist
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3.93 of 5 stars 3.93 avg rating — 10,252 ratings
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53 The Gap Into Conflict: The ...
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3.71 of 5 stars 3.71 avg rating — 5,424 ratings
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54 The Pride of Chanur (Compac...
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3.88 of 5 stars 3.88 avg rating — 4,085 ratings
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55 Deepness In The Sky
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4.3 of 5 stars 4.30 avg rating — 15,945 ratings
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56 The Empire Strikes Back
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4.04 of 5 stars 4.04 avg rating — 6,757 ratings
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57 Deathworld 1
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3.92 of 5 stars 3.92 avg rating — 3,404 ratings
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58 Tales of Known Space: The U...
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4.14 of 5 stars 4.14 avg rating — 3,898 ratings
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59 Tales from the 23rd Century...
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4.84 of 5 stars 4.84 avg rating — 19 ratings
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60 Double Star
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3.84 of 5 stars 3.84 avg rating — 10,993 ratings
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61 The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress
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4.16 of 5 stars 4.16 avg rating — 59,674 ratings
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62 Deathstalker (Deathstalker,...
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3.91 of 5 stars 3.91 avg rating — 2,982 ratings
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63 The Last Command (Star Wars...
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4.17 of 5 stars 4.17 avg rating — 24,371 ratings
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64 Startide Rising (The Uplift...
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4.02 of 5 stars 4.02 avg rating — 19,093 ratings
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65 Chasm City
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4.09 of 5 stars 4.09 avg rating — 9,093 ratings
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66 Reason For Vengeance
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4.31 of 5 stars 4.31 avg rating — 13 ratings
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67 Death Drop (The D-Evolution...
by
3.69 of 5 stars 3.69 avg rating — 80 ratings
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68 Star Wars Episode VI: Retur...
by
3.98 of 5 stars 3.98 avg rating — 5,383 ratings
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69 Excession (Culture, #5)
by
4.15 of 5 stars 4.15 avg rating — 11,928 ratings
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70 Citizen of the Galaxy
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3.94 of 5 stars 3.94 avg rating — 8,090 ratings
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71 Against a Dark Background
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4.04 of 5 stars 4.04 avg rating — 8,351 ratings
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72 Norstrilia
by
4.07 of 5 stars 4.07 avg rating — 1,139 ratings
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73 The Skylark of Space (Skyla...
by
3.71 of 5 stars 3.71 avg rating — 1,308 ratings
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74 Primary Inversion (Saga of ...
by
3.76 of 5 stars 3.76 avg rating — 2,194 ratings
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75 The Worker Prince (Saga of ...
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3.58 of 5 stars 3.58 avg rating — 38 ratings
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76 The Returning (Saga of Davi...
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4.38 of 5 stars 4.38 avg rating — 8 ratings
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77 Triplanetary (Lensman, #1)
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3.62 of 5 stars 3.62 avg rating — 3,270 ratings
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78 Have Space Suit—Will Travel
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3.86 of 5 stars 3.86 avg rating — 16,680 ratings
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79 Darwin's Blueprint
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3.89 of 5 stars 3.89 avg rating — 9 ratings
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79 Of Hearts And Stars
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3.69 of 5 stars 3.69 avg rating — 16 ratings
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81 Angels and Ministers of Grace
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3.84 of 5 stars 3.84 avg rating — 25 ratings
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82 The Last Colony (Old Man's ...
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4.0 of 5 stars 4.00 avg rating — 18,836 ratings
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83 The Ghost Brigades (Old Man...
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4.07 of 5 stars 4.07 avg rating — 25,493 ratings
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84 Red Planet
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3.75 of 5 stars 3.75 avg rating — 5,974 ratings
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85 Tau Zero
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3.85 of 5 stars 3.85 avg rating — 4,911 ratings
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86 Io Deceneus - Journal of a ...
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4.05 of 5 stars 4.05 avg rating — 88 ratings
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87 Path of Destruction (Star W...
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4.22 of 5 stars 4.22 avg rating — 8,758 ratings
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88 Eon (The Way, #1)
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3.83 of 5 stars 3.83 avg rating — 14,166 ratings
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89 Hunting Party (The Serrano ...
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3.82 of 5 stars 3.82 avg rating — 3,268 ratings
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89 Singularity Sky (Eschaton, #1)
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3.79 of 5 stars 3.79 avg rating — 7,813 ratings
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91 The High Crusade
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3.87 of 5 stars 3.87 avg rating — 1,841 ratings
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92 The Cassini Division (The F...
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3.91 of 5 stars 3.91 avg rating — 1,307 ratings
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93 The Witches of Karres (The ...
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4.13 of 5 stars 4.13 avg rating — 1,428 ratings
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94 Saturn's Children
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3.52 of 5 stars 3.52 avg rating — 4,146 ratings
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95 Veterans of the Psychic Wars
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4.24 of 5 stars 4.24 avg rating — 17 ratings
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96 Star Smashers of the Galaxy...
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3.62 of 5 stars 3.62 avg rating — 405 ratings
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96 In the Ocean of Night (Gala...
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3.65 of 5 stars 3.65 avg rating — 1,845 ratings
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98 Newton's Wake: A Space Opera
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3.56 of 5 stars 3.56 avg rating — 1,489 ratings
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99 The Star Beast
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3.72 of 5 stars 3.72 avg rating — 4,535 ratings
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100 Starman Jones
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3.75 of 5 stars 3.75 avg rating — 4,655 ratings
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297 books · 702 voters · list created July 24th, 2009 by Kevis Hendrickson (votes) .
77 likes · like
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Comments (showing 1-12 of 12) (12 new)

dateDown_arrow    newest »

message 1: by Melanie (new)

Melanie Great list of wonderful books.

Melanie


message 2: by Andre (new)

Andre Added Io Deceneus Journal of a time traveller. A brand new author but quite good in creating new worlds and conflicts between civilizations.


message 3: by David (new)

David I was surprised The Stars My Destination by Alfred Bester was not included in the list. If you've never read it, I highly recommend it, it's probably the best singular Science Fiction novel I've read thusly


message 4: by Herman (new)

Herman Gigglethorpe Dune is here twice for some reason. . .


message 5: by [deleted user] (new)

Saga does not forget to be awesome!


message 6: by Jamie (new)

Jamie Could someone define the difference between "space opera" and "sci-fi that happens to take place in space"?


message 7: by Kevis (last edited Dec 06, 2013 11:00AM) (new)

Kevis Hendrickson Jamie wrote: "Could someone define the difference between "space opera" and "sci-fi that happens to take place in space"?"

Space opera is a branch of science fiction where the story generally takes place in outer space. Its focus is usually on interplanetary adventure on a grand, epic scale, rather than the technical aspects of space exploration which you might associate with Hard Science Fiction which places the focus on the science, rather than the humanistic elements found in space opera.

When you say Space Opera, think Star Wars or Dune. Science Fiction in space is more akin to 2001: A Space Odyssey.


message 8: by Thomas (new)

Thomas Kevis wrote: "Space opera is a branch of science fiction where the story generally takes place in outer space. Its focus is usually on adventure on a grand, epic scale, rather than the technical aspects of space exploration which you might associate with Hard Science Fiction which places the focus on the science, rather than the humanistic elements found in space opera.."

Kevis.

I like your descripion of space opera vs science fiction. It's clear and concise.


message 9: by Kevis (last edited Dec 06, 2013 10:59AM) (new)

Kevis Hendrickson Thomas wrote: "Kevis wrote: "Space opera is a branch of science fiction where the story generally takes place in outer space. Its focus is usually on adventure on a grand, epic scale, rather than the technical as..."

Glad you like it, Thomas!


message 10: by Jamie (new)

Jamie Kevis wrote: "When you say Space Opera, think Star Wars or Dune. Science Fiction in space is more akin to 2001: A Space Odyssey. ..."

Thank you. I was confused because 2001 is on this list (so I must not be the only one...) :-)


message 11: by Kevis (new)

Kevis Hendrickson Jamie wrote: "Kevis wrote: "When you say Space Opera, think Star Wars or Dune. Science Fiction in space is more akin to 2001: A Space Odyssey. ..."

Thank you. I was confused because 2001 is on this list (so I ..."


No problem, Jamie. There's a lot of confusion about what's space opera and what isn't and it leads to some interesting book choices for this list.


message 12: by Jon (new)

Jon Graci How is the saga of seven suns not on here


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