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Books Like The Expanse: Our Recommended Books ✨

By Leo Flynn

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ARTEMIS By Andy Weir

Artemis Book Cover

Description: Jasmine Bashara wanted to get rich. Not billionaire rich, like many on Artemis, humanity’s first and only lunar colony. Enough to pay off a debt. When a chance comes her way, Jazz can’t say no. It’ll put her in the middle of a conspiracy for control of Artemis.

Why Read It? Andy Weir is a sci-fi author who rocketed to fame with his critically acclaimed, best-selling debut novel. A sci-fi romp filled with action, adventure, humor, and heart from the bestselling writer of the Martian.

ALL SYSTEMS RED By Martha Wells

All Systems Red Book Cover

Description: In a corporate dominated spacefaring future, missions must be approved by the Company. Security androids accompany teams for their safety. On a distant planet, scientists conducts tests, shadowed by a self-aware SecUnit that refers to itself (though never out loud) as “Murderbot.” When a neighboring mission goes dark, it’s up to the scientists and Murderbot to discover the truth.

Why Read It? Martha Wells is an author of science fiction and fantasy – she’s been writing stories for years, and she’s still going strong. This entertaining story, the first in the Murderbot Diaries series of space adventures, is intriguing and hilarious.

ANCILLARY JUSTICE By Ann Leckie

Ancillary Justice Book Cover

Description: On a remote, icy planet, Breq is drawing closer to completing her quest. Once, she was the Justice of Toren — a colossal starship with artificial intelligence linking thousands of soldiers in the service of the Radch. Now, treason has ripped it all away, leaving her with one fragile human body, unanswered questions, and a burning desire for vengeance.

Why Read It? Ann Leckie is an award-winning author who’s revolutionized science fiction with her acclaimed works. She’s a must-read. This book is the only one to win the Hugo, Nebula, & Arthur C. Clarke awards! Great if you love Ursula K. Le Guin, Star Wars, James S. A. Corey, and books like Leviathan Wakes.

AURORA By Kim Stanley Robinson

Aurora Book Cover

Description: Our voyage from Earth began generations ago. Now, we approach our new home. AURORA.

About The Author: This New York Times bestselling science fiction author has won the Hugo, Nebula, and Locus awards.

Why Read It? This interstellar space opera book is a stunning exploration of humanity’s first journey beyond our solar system.

THE COLD BETWEEN By Elizabeth Bonesteel

Cold Between Book Cover

Description: When her crewmate, Danny, is murdered, Commander Elena Shaw is shocked to learn the suspect is her lover, Treiko Zajec. Trey is innocent. Who is the real killer? His death may be tied to the explosion of a Central Corps starship. The truth is a conspiracy threatening civilization.

Why Read It? Elizabeth Bonesteel is an award-winning author who creates captivating science fiction worlds with a hint of romance. A thrilling space opera with mystery and romance, this is an exciting debut science fiction book.

CHILDREN OF TIME By Adrian Tchaikovsky

Children Of Time Book Cover

Description: The remnants of the human race left a dying Earth. They discover a world terraformed for human life. In the years the planet was abandoned, it turned into humankind’s worst nightmare. Who are the true heirs of this alien civilization, a new Earth?

Why Read It? Adrian Tchaikovsky’s an award-winning British author who loves exploring fantastical worlds and creating compelling stories. Clever worldbuilding and high stakes, this is a science fiction novel of epic proportions discussing natural and artificial intelligence.

BEHIND THE THRONE By K.B. Wagers

Behind The Throne Book Cover

Description: Quick, sarcastic, and lethal, Hailimi Bristol made a name for herself for everything except what she was born to do: rule the Indranan Empire. Until two Trackers drag her back to take her place as the remaining heir. Caught in a web of plots and assassination attempts, Hail can’t run away. She’ll have to figure out who murdered her sisters.

Why Read It? K.B. Wagers writes witty and wild tales with heart and humor. Fascinating worldbuilding, a badass protagonist, guns-blazing action, and political intrigue, what’s not to love?

HYPERION By Dan Simmons

Hyperion Book Cover

Description: The creature called the Shrike lives on Hyperion. Some worship it. Some fear it. Some have vowed to destroy it. On Armageddon, with the galaxy at war, seven pilgrims go to Hyperion seeking the answers to the unsolved riddles of their lives.

About The Author: Dan Simmons is an award-winning author of science fiction, fantasy, and horror novels.

Why Read It? A triumph in epic science fiction.

oLD MAN’S WAR By John Scalzi

Old Mans War Book Cover

Description: At 75 years old, John Perry is after a fresh start, so he joins the army. Earth’s military machine can restore lost youth. In return, its demands two years of service in space. Perry finds himself in a enhanced body, but upgrades won’t keep Perry safe. He’ll be on the front line as he defends humanity’s colonies from hostile aliens. He’ll discover the universe is more dangerous than he imagined.

About The Author: John Scalzi is an award-winning author who’s been entertaining readers with his creative and offbeat works for years.

Why Read It? An inventive and fast-paced military sci-fi and space opera, with clever plotting and engaging characters.

DOWNBELOW STATION By C. J. Cherryh

Downbelow Station Book Cover

Description: Welcome to the Beyond, a vast empire of interstellar freighters, Stations orbiting the stars nearest Earth. The powerful Earth Company used to dominate the Beyond, reaping profits and influencing nations. When Pell was discovered, things changed. Now, Earth’s importance has faded and the Company’s profits have dwindled. A new society has grown in the further reaches of space. The tension between the rebel Union and those who defend Earth’s last grasp for the stars is growing – and Pell Station is the last stronghold.

About The Author: C.J. Cherryh is a sci-fi author who’s written for decades.

Why Read It? It’s the winner of a Hugo Award from a master of her craft.

CONSIDER PHLEBAS By Iain M. Banks

Consider Phlebas Book Cover

Description: The galaxy is at war, and billions have already perished. Moons, planets, and stars are all at risk of destruction. The Idirans and the Culture are fighting for their beliefs, and there’s no backing down. Horza and his ragtag team of mercenaries must venture into a mysterious and forbidden world in search of a fugitive Mind. But their journey could lead to their own undoing.

About The Author: Iain M Banks was a Scottish writer who loved creating imaginative, thoughtful sci-fi stories that explored the possibilities of the future.

Why Read It? A powerful, tour-de-force rich with meaning.

REVELATION SPACE By Alastair Reynolds

Revelation Space Book Cover

Description: Nine hundred thousand years ago, a mysterious force wiped out the Amarantin just before they were set to take flight into space. Now, scientist Dan Sylveste is determined to uncover the truth of what happened. He teams up with the crew of Nostalgia for Infinity, but danger is closing in. Uncovering the reason behind the Amarantin’s destruction could change the universe forever.

About The Author: Alastair Reynolds is a master of sci-fi and space opera, crafting epic stories of the future.

Why Read It? It’s a sweeping, captivating story of a dangerous future.

GATEWAY By Frederik Pohl

Gateway Book Cover

Description: The enigmatic Heechee abandoned artifacts among the stars. Anyone can board their spaceships and find wealth or death. Robinette Broadhead took that chance and won. Despite living a millionaire’s life, he’s haunted by crippling despair. With the help of his computerized psychiatrist, the truth about what happened could set Broadhead free. But only after a terrifying journey.

About The Author: Frederik Pohl was a sci-fi master of out-of-this-world stories.

Why Read It? A winner of the Nebula and Hugo awards, the worldbuilding, action, and characters come alive.

RED RISING By Pierce Brown

Red Rising Book Cover

Description: Darrow is a Red of the lowest caste in his color-coded society. He works, believing he’s making Mars livable for future generations. Soon he discovers Reds are slaves to a decadent ruling class. Darrow sacrifices everything to infiltrate the legendary Institute, where he’ll compete against the best of Society’s ruling class. He’ll stop at nothing to bring down his enemies.

About The Author: Pierce Brown is a sci-fi/fantasy author who’s taken the world by storm with his bestselling Red Rising series.

Why Read It? A thrilling dystopian story of epic scale and full of humanity.

ALTERED CARBON By Richard Morgan

Altered Carbon Book Cover

Description: Humankind is strung across space inherited from an ancient civilization from Mars. Human consciousness is freighted and downloaded into bodies. When Takeshi Kovacs has his consciousness downloaded into the body of a nicotine-addicted thug, he shouldn’t be surprised. Contracted by a billionaire to discover who murdered his last body, Kovacs is drawn into a terrifying conspiracy.

About The Author: Richard Morgan is an award-winning sci-fi thriller author.

Why Read It? A gritty, adventurous book, told from a cynical criminal’s point of view. Great for dark SciFi fans.

About The Author: Leo Flynn

Hi! I run Road Less Read, curating my scifi, fantasy + YA favorites from reading 100+ books a year!

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