85 books like Glasshouse

By Charles Stross,

Here are 85 books that Glasshouse fans have personally recommended if you like Glasshouse. Shepherd is a community of 10,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of In the Garden of Iden

Jay Cutts Author Of Annie Gomez and the Gigantic Foot of Doom

From my list on funny sci/fi fantasy.

Why am I passionate about this?

Where many people would see an empty package of Oreos, I see the remains of a lost civilization, an artifact crafted galaxies away by beings who flit in and out of existence in order to build rainbows for lonely children and who have left the empty bag, filled with dog poop, flaming on someone’s front step and are laughing uncontrollably as the person stomps on it to put it out. I want to find authors who see more than the bag of Oreos. I want them to be wildly imaginative and to paint what they see with cleverness and humor. I try to do the same.

Jay's book list on funny sci/fi fantasy

Jay Cutts Why did Jay love this book?

Kage Baker is an Isaac Asimov compared to Terry Pratchett’s Marx Brothers. In the Garden of Iden is more sci-fi than fantasy, including time travel, cybernetics, and nanotechnologies. And love and loss. This book is part of a series of novels that Baker crafted about time-travelling enhanced humans who carry out critical tasks throughout history. 

What I loved most about this book is how very human her main characters are. Like Pratchett and Bill Shakespeare, Baker is a master at showing us human nature. Her comedy is high comedy. I laugh because I recognize myself in her characters. Baker has a fine eye for the subtle and the absurd. And yet unlike many humorous authors, the tragedies of the heart are always at the core of her stories.

By Kage Baker,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked In the Garden of Iden as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

This is the first novel in what has become one of the most popular series in contemporary Science Fiction, now back in print from Tor. In the twenty-fourth century, the Company preserves works of art and extinct forms of life (for profit of course). It recruits orphans from the past, renders them all but immortal, and trains them to serve the Company. One of these is Mendoza the botanist, who is sent to Elizabethan England to collect samples from the garden of Sir Walter Iden. Her quest is jeopardized by Nicholas Harpole, who stirs unfamiliar emotions within her about her…


Book cover of All Clear

Tristan Palmgren Author Of Quietus

From my list on science fiction books about the past.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m a Virginia-based science fiction and fantasy writer who’s lived variously-enriching lives as a coroner’s assistant, customer service manager, university lecturer, secretary, factory technician, and clerk. I’ve bounced all around the Midwest, from Minnesota to Ohio to Colorado to Missouri and now out on the East Coast.

Tristan's book list on science fiction books about the past

Tristan Palmgren Why did Tristan love this book?

It’s too easy, in time travel fantasies, to imagine that you would feel a step above the people around you... that you alone know what’s coming, and just, in general, have your advanced-future-person perspective on the world. That’s not how history should feel. The All Clear series’s time-traveling historians arrive to observe the London Blitz and have that comforting certainty ripped out from underneath them. They’re left lost, alone, and isolated in a well-painted portrait of a world on the edge of collapse.

By Connie Willis,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Award-winning author Connie Willis returns with a stunning, enormously entertaining novel of time travel, war, and the deeds - great and small - of ordinary people who shape history.


Book cover of Darwinia

Don Kinney Author Of The Darkdrift

From my list on sci-fi for newbies, from a newbie sci-fi writer.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve been fascinated by science and space since I was a child and naturally gravitated toward science fiction. In many respects, it was a form of escapism, as I didn’t enjoy school. I always preferred escaping into another world or being taken on a journey to another world. It wasn’t until I got older that I realized that most great science fiction is a commentary on our own world and the issues we face daily. Science fiction, more than any other genre, does a better job of exploring and dissecting aspects of our world, which in turn helps us better understand our world and our relationship with it.

Don's book list on sci-fi for newbies, from a newbie sci-fi writer

Don Kinney Why did Don love this book?

Darwinia was the first novel I read by Robert Charles Wilson, who I believe is the best modern-day science fiction writer. Darwinia was a novel I had to read twice to really grasp how brilliantly Wilson had woven everything together. This is one of those novels where the ending can sneak up on you and blow you away and you weren’t even remotely prepared, which is preferred over any ending that I can predict.

By Robert Charles Wilson,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

In an alternative history of the twentieth century, Europe is replaced by a land of nightmarish jungle and monsters that contains the secret of human destiny.


Book cover of Ammonite

Tristan Palmgren Author Of Quietus

From my list on science fiction books about the past.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m a Virginia-based science fiction and fantasy writer who’s lived variously-enriching lives as a coroner’s assistant, customer service manager, university lecturer, secretary, factory technician, and clerk. I’ve bounced all around the Midwest, from Minnesota to Ohio to Colorado to Missouri and now out on the East Coast.

Tristan's book list on science fiction books about the past

Tristan Palmgren Why did Tristan love this book?

Ammonite starts in space and lands on an alien world but brings plenty of Earth’s history along with it. Human settlers that lost an age ago, transformed by a virus that only women survive but allows them to reproduce, have spread across this world. Anthropologist Marghe Taishan faces down nomadic horse archers and gets lost in pastoral folkways both new and familiar. She deconstructs her future and rebuilds herself out of the past. Ammonite’s new world shows us how our world might have looked if different paths were taken.

By Nicola Griffith,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Winner of the Lambda and Tiptree Awards • “A knockout . . . Strong, likable characters, a compelling story, and a very interesting take on gender.”—Ursula K. Le Guin

Change or die. These are the only options available on planet Jeep. Centuries earlier, a deadly virus shattered the original colony, killing the men and forever altering the few surviving women. Now, generations after the colony lost touch with the rest of humanity, a company arrives to exploit Jeep—and its forces find themselves fighting for their lives. Terrified of spreading the virus, the company abandons its employees, leaving them afraid and…


Book cover of Nyxia

Justin Doyle Author Of Embargo on Hope

From my list on space opera with a hint (or a whole lot) of magic.

Why am I passionate about this?

As an engineer for multiple space projects (including the ISS, Gateway, and commercial space), it seems like I should be a strict sci-fi person. But I love sci-fi and fantasy equally, and I love books that break through the wall between them. Especially in space opera, you can play with how much technology and how much magic shaped a world and a culture. Zooming in, that will greatly influence the characters. Some make it esoteric and exclusive, where others make it more common. All of them transport readers to magical, expansive universes.

Justin's book list on space opera with a hint (or a whole lot) of magic

Justin Doyle Why did Justin love this book?

Nyxia, the first in a young adult trilogy, introduces the reader to an Earth that has found a foreign substance called nyxia on another planet. Use of nyxia basically grants magical abilities to the user, and the more clever the user, the more capability it has. The cast is very diverse, the main character’s voice is refreshing, and the dialogue is realistic. It’s a fast, easy read with a relatable main character. And the plot only thickens as the series goes on…

By Scott Reintgen,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Nyxia as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 12, 13, 14, and 15.

What is this book about?

“A high-octane thriller . . . Nyxia grabs you from the first line and never lets go.” —Marie Lu, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Warcross

Every life has a price in this sci-fi thriller—the first in a trilogy—that has the nonstop action of The Maze Runner and the high-stakes space setting of Illuminae. 
 
What would you be willing to risk for a lifetime of fortune?
 
Emmett Atwater isn’t just leaving Detroit; he’s leaving Earth. Why the Babel Corporation recruited him is a mystery, but the number of zeroes on their contract has him boarding their lightship and hoping…


Book cover of The Sheriff of Yrnameer

Tom Dell'aringa Author Of Blanchland Blues

From my list on sci-fi to get lost in that tickle your funny bone.

Why am I passionate about this?

Comedy and science fiction have special places in my heart. I’m fascinated with the prospect of what AI and machine learning might bring us, and I believe to laugh and enjoy life is to be healthy and content. The best humor is revealed through character relationships. I grew up watching Doctor Who, a show that presented a serious story with lighthearted moments. Douglas Adams put that same formula in his books. For ten years I honed my writing skills producing graphic novels, where you had to tell a story and inject humor onto one page. Now novel writing is my means of bringing a little joy to the world.

Tom's book list on sci-fi to get lost in that tickle your funny bone

Tom Dell'aringa Why did Tom love this book?

I have so much love for this story and I can’t understand how it’s not a bestseller. This book helped me understand my own brand of humor could work in a novel. Michael Rubens has a unique razor wit like Douglas Adams, and what I cherish about this story is all the laugh-out-loud moments. When I read this book, I am smiling the whole time—it lifts my spirits! Cole, the main character, flees the galaxy’s most hideous and feared bounty hunter who wants to lay eggs in his brain. Things don't get any better when he smuggles a ship full of freeze-dried orphans. In the end, Cole has to make a tough choice, which always resonates with me. Do you want to be happy? Read this book!

By Michael Rubens,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

In the spirit of Douglas Adams and Terry Pratchett, The Sheriff of Yrnameer is sci-fi comedy at its best—mordant, raucously funny, and a thrilling page-turner.
 
Meet Cole: hapless space rogue and part-time smuggler. His sidekick just stole his girlfriend. The galaxy’s most hideous and feared bounty hunter wants to lay eggs in his brain. And the luxury space yacht Cole just hijacked turns out to be filled with interstellar do-gooders, one especially loathsome stowaway, and a cargo of freeze-dried orphans. Cole gathers a misfit crew for a desperate journey to the far reaches of the galaxy: the mysterious world of…


Book cover of Chilling Effect

A.C. Huntley Author Of The Galactic Zookeeper's Guide to Heists and Husbandry

From my list on humorous sci-fi books with female protagonists.

Why am I passionate about this?

When I was a child, the thing that plagued me most about my favorite genre, sci-fi, was that none of the protagonists were women! As a daughter to doctors and research scientists, it felt strange that the only female characters in sci-fi were these buxom, mystical healers or seamstresses who meekly repaired their crewmates’ uniforms. While that problem has been remedied over the last two decades of excellence in mainstream sci-fi with some truly unforgettable female heroines, they’re not as plentiful in the niche market of humorous sci-fi. I am thrilled to share this list of my favorite lighthearted, humorous sci-fi reads with female protagonists. 

A.C.'s book list on humorous sci-fi books with female protagonists

A.C. Huntley Why did A.C. love this book?

I enjoyed the pacing of this action-packed book.

Cuban-descended protagonist Eve Innocente is trying to rescue her kidnapped sister from a galactic crime syndicate known as the Fridge. What really carried me through the story were the whacky shenanigans along the way, including a cargo hold full of psychic cats. This book had such a fun feel!

By Valerie Valdes,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

"Jam-packed with weird aliens, mysterious artifacts, and lovable characters... a tremendous good time and an impressive debut." -- Kirkus Reviews (starred)

A hilarious, offbeat debut space opera that skewers everything from pop culture to video games and features an irresistible foul-mouthed captain and her motley crew, strange life forms, exciting twists, and a galaxy full of fun and adventure.

Captain Eva Innocente and the crew of La Sirena Negra cruise the galaxy delivering small cargo for even smaller profits. When her sister Mari is kidnapped by The Fridge, a shadowy syndicate that holds people hostage in cryostasis, Eva must undergo…


Book cover of The Outside

Nick Walker Author Of Neuroqueer Heresies: Notes on the Neurodiversity Paradigm, Autistic Empowerment, and Postnormal Possibilities

From my list on neuroqueer speculative fiction.

Why am I passionate about this?

My first passion, as a youngster, was speculative fiction—stories and comics that set the imagination ablaze with visions of wondrous possibilities and impossibilities. Later, my experiences of being queer, transgender, and autistic led me to an academic career in which I helped create the field of Neurodiversity Studies and something called Neuroqueer Theory (which is what you get when you mix Queer Theory and neurodiversity together and shake vigorously). These days I’m back to writing fiction, including the urban fantasy webcomic Weird Luck, and I’m thrilled to find myself part of an emerging wave of neuroqueer speculative fiction. Here are some of the best so far...

Nick's book list on neuroqueer speculative fiction

Nick Walker Why did Nick love this book?

The Outside is a gripping sci-fi novel with a queer autistic protagonist, written by an autistic author who perfectly conveys the flavor of autistic thinking. This one’s set far in the future, in a galaxy-spanning theocracy ruled by powerful artificial intelligences that have set themselves up as gods. Scientist Yasira Shien has developed a brilliant new energy drive. The problem? Turns out the drive taps into an extradimensional reality called the Outside, which, true to its name, exists outside ordinary spacetime—and which is capable of spilling over catastrophically into the material world. Highly original world-building blended with classic space opera. Compelling characters and a plot that had me hooked all the way. Oh, and it’s the first book in a trilogy!

By Ada Hoffmann,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Autistic scientist Yasira Shien has developed a radical new energy drive on board The Pride of Jai that could change the future of humanity. But when she activates it, reality warps, destroying the space station and everyone left inside.

The Gods declare her work heretical, and Yasira is abducted by their agents. Instead of simply executing her, they offer mercy if she'll help them hunt down a bigger target: her mysterious, vanished mentor.

With her homeworld's fate in the balance, Yasira must choose who to trust: the Gods and their ruthless post-human angels, or the rebel scientist whose unorthodox mathematics…


Book cover of Binti

Ness Brown Author Of The Scourge Between Stars

From my list on sci-fi about space missions gone terribly wrong.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am an astrophysicist with a passion for narratives that stare unflinchingly at the inherent hostility of outer space. Professionally, I study graduate astrophysics and research the ways high-energy celestial objects impact cosmic evolution. Creatively, I use my training to write science fiction horror exploring the spookiest things the universe has to offer. I particularly love stories that throw wrenches in the best-laid plans of star-faring protagonists, and will never get tired of a good old space mission gone terribly and tragically awry.

Ness' book list on sci-fi about space missions gone terribly wrong

Ness Brown Why did Ness love this book?

Binti combines some of my favorite flavors of science fiction into one bittersweet treat: brutal interspecies politics, cultural misunderstandings, and the struggle for coexistence in a galactic community.

The tragic encounter between students on their way to attend a prestigious university on another world and a violent alien species starts this story off with heart-pounding, heart-rending stakes. It goes on to interrogate war and peace between species and the act of true communication and tolerance.

Those who are interested in stories with a raw but hopeful outlook on what it would mean for multiple civilizations in the Milky Way to find harmony will enjoy this read.

By Nnedi Okorafor,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Winner of the Hugo Award and the Nebula Award for Best Novella! Her name is Binti, and she is the first of the Himba people ever to be offered a place at Oomza University, the finest institution of higher learning in the galaxy. But to accept the offer will mean giving up her place in her family to travel between the stars among strangers who do not share her ways or respect her customs. Knowledge comes at a cost, one that Binti is willing to pay, but her journey will not be easy. The world she seeks to enter has…


Book cover of 2001

K. Van Kramer Author Of Modified

From my list on science fiction with A.I. and sweeping new worlds.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve always loved science fiction because it offers a hope, a dream, or a future that we just haven't seen yet. When I write my stories, I feel there is no better use of my imagination, than to contemplate a new world, a new civilization, or future technology. At the same time, I hope to entertain readers and spark young imaginations. Inside Modified, I reached into a distant future with off-world colonies that float in the clouds of Venus, while robots toil on the planet’s surface. Of course, in such a future, when advanced modifications and recursive designs are used, leads one to wonder if my robot can love too.

K.'s book list on science fiction with A.I. and sweeping new worlds

K. Van Kramer Why did K. love this book?

This book seems a bit strange at first, when the story begins with Moon-Watcher, the leader of a tribe of early ape-man, who struggles for survival during the brutal Pleistocene ice age. After an alien monolith appears, it seems to advance the way he thinks, leading him to develop crude weapons. When the same monolith is discovered in the future, we seem fated to find the answers behind the eerie structure. Skipping to a team of astronauts who travel aboard a ship to further investigate, things take an unexpected turn when the ship’s A.I. called HAL-9000, gets very confused about keeping secrets. Something about the way it remains so polite while it deceives the crew, is enough to give anyone a nightmare.

By Arthur C. Clarke,

Why should I read it?

7 authors picked 2001 as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Written when landing on the moon was still a dream, and made into one of the most influential films of all time, 2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY remains a classic work of science fiction fifty years after its original publication.

The discovery of a black monolith on the moon leads to a manned expedition deep into the solar system, in the hope of establishing contact with an alien intelligence. Yet long before the crew can reach their destination, the voyage descends into disaster . . .

Brilliant, compulsive and prophetic, Arthur C. Clarke's timeless novel tackles the enduring theme of mankind's…


5 book lists we think you will like!

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