The best books in time travel and sci-fi/fantasy adventure series

William Long Author Of Timecrack
By William Long

Who am I?

During my childhood years, my wonderful aunt in Canada would regularly send me the latest American comics featuring superheroes and their incredible adventures. Later, I would come across old copies of King Solomon’s Mines by H. Rider Haggard, The Time Machine and The War of the Worlds by H.G. Wells, and soon I was captured by other writers’ worlds of sci-fi and fantasy. My own historical interest in ancient cultures, exploring the Yucatan in Mexico, Sri Lanka, Egypt, Spain, Italy, and Newgrange in Ireland, was added to my other interests. This included aviation, the cosmos, and space exploration. With the possibility of other dimensions and new worlds, the idea for the Timecrack Adventures was born.


I wrote...

Timecrack

By William Long,

Book cover of Timecrack

What is my book about?

"Timecrack is one of those entertaining books that pulls you out of the monotony of day-to-day life, and thrusts you upon a whole new world. In this first book in his series, we join the Kinross family in a beautiful, thrilling adventure when a portal opens and pulls them through to a fantastic new world." - Michael DeAngelo, Tellest.com

The books I picked & why

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The City of Ember

By Jeanne DuPrau,

Book cover of The City of Ember

Why this book?

I came across this story when I was selected, very unexpectedly, as an extra for the movie version of the novel The City of Ember, to be made in Belfast. It was a remarkable coincidence, because I had been researching and working on an idea for a sci-fi/fantasy adventure series for a number of months.

The film and the book tell how a boy and a girl, living in an underground city created hundreds of years earlier, attempt to find a way to escape back to the Earth’s surface, using their discovery of an ancient manuscript.

Meeting the wonderful young actress, Saiorse Ronan, in the early stages of her highly successful film career, I found inspirational. She and the book helped my imagination as I pursued ideas for my book.

The City of Ember

By Jeanne DuPrau,

Why should I read it?

5 authors picked The City of Ember as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Ember is the only light in a dark world. But when its lamps begin to flicker, two friends must race to escape the dark. This highly acclaimed adventure series is a modern-day classic-with over 4 MILLION copies sold!

The city of Ember was built as a last refuge for the human race. Two hundred years later, the great lamps that light the city are beginning to dim. When Lina finds part of an ancient message, she's sure it holds a secret that will save the city. Now, she and her friend Doon must race to figure out the clues to…


Labyrinth

By Kate Mosse,

Book cover of Labyrinth

Why this book?

This book combines two different time periods, modern France and the Middle Ages, along with an archaeological background and real historical events.

Labyrinth is an enthralling classic which can be read as an introduction to the tragedy of a brutal religious crusade waged against the heretics of Carcassonne, by the nobles of northern France. Centuries later, a young woman working at an archaeological dig comes across the remains of the crusade and is connected to the past by what she finds. A mystery she is driven to solve.

Kate Mosses’ concept of time travel to another time zone as the basis of a historical adventure is a long book, but it resonated with some of my own ideas for my storytelling.

Labyrinth

By Kate Mosse,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked Labyrinth as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

July 2005. In the Pyrenees mountains near Carcassonne, Alice, a volunteer at an archaeological dig, stumbles into a cave and makes a startling discovery-two crumbling skeletons, strange writings on the walls, and the pattern of a labyrinth.

Eight hundred years earlier, on the eve of a brutal crusade that will rip apart southern France, a young woman named Alais is given a ring and a mysterious book for safekeeping by her father. The book, he says, contains the secret of the true Grail, and the ring, inscribed with a labyrinth, will identify a guardian of the Grail. Now, as crusading…


Ireland

By Frank Delaney,

Book cover of Ireland

Why this book?

Being Irish, I can’t help but place Ireland, in my best top ten historical fictional novels. The country is famous for its legends and fantasy, but this story is also about the passage of time from the ice age to the 1950s, told by one of the last of the ancient storytellers that used to roam the roads of Ireland, passing on tales and news from the past.

A young boy is hooked by the stories and as he grows to manhood, he is determined to follow the storyteller wherever he travels. He loses him, but he devotes his life to finding him and learning more of the bygone ages and its people, once again.

This is a beautiful story, told by the late Frank Delaney, and although he lived in America, he never really left Ireland and its mysteries.

Ireland

By Frank Delaney,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Ireland as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

One evening in 1951, an itinerant storyteller arrives unannounced and mysterious at a house in the Irish countryside. By the November fireside he begins to tell the story of this extraordinary land. One of his listeners, a nine-year-old boy, grows so entranced by the storytelling that, when the old man leaves, he devotes his life to finding him again. It is a search that uncovers both passions and mysteries, in his own life as well as the old man's, and their solving becomes the thrilling climax to this tale. But the life of this boy is more than just his…


His Dark Materials

By Philip Pullman,

Book cover of His Dark Materials

Why this book?

Pullman’s trilogy about parallel worlds gripped me after reading the first novel in the series The Northern Lights. As he has said, that like myself, he is not a scientist, but since childhood he has been an avid reader of popular science and the many good books linked to the subject.

When I discovered that his trilogy, like my own and many others, dealt with the mystery of a parallel universe and another world. I was hooked to find out more. He has two young people, a boy and a girl, and a host of other exciting characters throughout his story. Somewhat like my own stories, except there are two boys and a girl, and each book is a separate adventure.

I’m sure readers of the genre will be delighted with His Dark Materials and the mysterious new world Pullman describes.

His Dark Materials

By Philip Pullman,

Why should I read it?

9 authors picked His Dark Materials as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Now a major critically acclaimed BBC series

This special collection features all three titles in the award-winning trilogy: Northern Lights, The Subtle Knife and The Amber Spyglass.

Northern Lights
Lyra Belacqua lives half-wild and carefree among the scholars of Jordan College, with her daemon familiar always by her side. But the arrival of her fearsome uncle, Lord Asriel, draws her to the heart of a terrible struggle - a struggle born of Gobblers and stolen children, witch clans and armoured bears.

The Subtle Knife
Lyra finds herself in a shimmering, haunted otherworld - Cittagazze, where soul-eating Spectres stalk the streets…


Contact

By Carl Sagan,

Book cover of Contact

Why this book?

A scientist and brilliant astronomer, Carl Sagan was also recognised for his involvement with NASA and the Apollo moon programme. And, perhaps, best known to some for his ‘Pale Blue Dot’ speech, when he referred to the Earth as a small dot, seen by the Voyager 1 space probe at a distance of 5 billion miles away in deep space.

As one of my favourite writers on science and philosophy, Sagan also wrote one of the bestsellers ever conceived about humanity meeting other beings in another universe, aptly named Contact.

I have no doubt, that his scientific works and imagination, influenced many authors, certainly myself, to write their own sci-fi and fantasy novels.

Contact

By Carl Sagan,

Why should I read it?

8 authors picked Contact as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In December 1999 a multinational team journeys out to the stars, to the most awesome encounter in human history. Who - or what - is out there?


5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in time travel, astronomers, and France?

7,000+ authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about time travel, astronomers, and France.

Time Travel Explore 202 books about time travel
Astronomers Explore 13 books about astronomers
France Explore 690 books about France

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