The best science fiction books that make you laugh without insulting your intelligence

Karina Fabian Author Of Space Traipse: Hold My Beer, Season 1
By Karina Fabian

Who am I?

I am a writer of science fiction and fantasy, and a humorist. My husband and I fell in love over Star Trek and puns, and we both share a deep abiding hatred of people acting stupidly to further a plot. I read to escape, so I’m looking for laughs but also compelling characters who live their stories rather than act out the author’s wishes. I will toss a book as soon as it insults my intelligence or bores me. Thus, when I write, I let the characters run the show—and they never fail me.


I wrote...

Space Traipse: Hold My Beer, Season 1

By Karina Fabian,

Book cover of Space Traipse: Hold My Beer, Season 1

What is my book about?

If you love Star Trek and parodies... If the Orville and Galaxy Quest give you as much joy as Wrath of Khan... Then this is the book for you. Join the crew of the HMB Impulsive as we reverse the polarity on cliches, set phasers to Pun, and boldly go where no parody has gone before.

In Book 1 of this series, the Impulsive’s crew plays matchmaker to warring worlds, rescues the Ship’s Sexy from an environmentally paranoid planet, saves an alien ship by reversing its polarity, and nearly gets themselves killed on an amusement planet in a parody of ST: TOS “Shore Leave.” Plus, we follow a janitorial robot for a day.

The books I picked & why

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Phule's Company

By Robert Asprin,

Book cover of Phule's Company

Why this book?

Willard J. Phule, the rich son of a millionaire arms manufacturer, reforms a group of misfits in the Space Legion, a fictional organization similar to the French Foreign Legion, into an “elite fighting force.” What I love about this book is the mix of humor and common sense. I’m a big fan of out-of-the-box thinking in tactical situations, and Phule’s Company uses it in spades.


How Much for Just the Planet

By John M. Ford,

Book cover of How Much for Just the Planet

Why this book?

Kirk and the Enterprise go up against the Klingons for the right to mine dilithium on Direidi. But the Direidians are writing their own script for this contest—a script that propels the crew of the Starship Enterprise into their strangest adventure yet! I think this was the first “serious” Star Trek novel I ran across that was all about the humor. Ford did a great job of creating situations that make the reader laugh while still respecting the characters.


The Adventures of Tom Stranger, Interdimensional Insurance Agent

By Larry Correia, Adam Baldwin (narrator),

Book cover of The Adventures of Tom Stranger, Interdimensional Insurance Agent

Why this book?

Rifts happen, so you should be ready when universes collide. A policy with Stranger & Stranger can cover all of your interdimensional insurance needs. But Tom Stranger faces his greatest challenge yet. Despite being assigned the wrong—and woefully inadequateintern, Tom must still provide quality customer service to multiple alternate Earths, all while battling tentacle monsters, legions of the damned, an evil call center in Nebraska, and his archnemesis, Jeff Conundrum. It's time to kick ass and adjust claims. This is my go-to for road trips. Tom Stranger is such a straight man, but the humor never stops.


The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

By Douglas Adams,

Book cover of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

Why this book?

Arthur Dent is picked up by an alien ship just before Earth is destroyed to make way for a hyperspace bypass. With just a towel, a small yellow fish, his best friend, and a book, Arthur has to navigate through a very hostile universe in the company of a gang of unreliable aliens. Fortunutately, his best friend turns out to be an alien and the fish is quite good at languages. And the book is The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy…which helpfully has the words DON’T PANIC inscribed in large, friendly letters on its cover. This SF humor classic got me hooked on the genre. If you’ve never understood why people say 42 is the ultimate answer, then you need to read this book.


A Fearsome Little Ship

By Alex Lobdell,

Book cover of A Fearsome Little Ship

Why this book?

Captain Bristol and his ship Blue 87 are taken prisoner by scientists who want to take Blue’s cognizant brain and use Bristol in regeneration experiments along with the others they have plucked from history. Outgunned, outnumbered, and definitely outdated, this unlikely gaggle of prisoners must find a way to save not only themselves, but the British Galactic Empire. I’ve read this book twice this year and it kept me laughing every time with its crazy antics. I’m dying for the sequel. (Hope they can resurrect me!)


5 book lists we think you will like!

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