The best books on psychokinesis

17 authors have picked their favorite books about psychokinesis and why they recommend each book.

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The Fifth Season

By N.K. Jemisin,

Book cover of The Fifth Season: The Broken Earth, Book 1

This book grabs the reader from the word “you” and never lets go. I am a complete sucker for non-standard narration and The Fifth Season by N.K. Jemisin doesn’t disappoint. Many authors might use second person narration as a gimmick, but Jemisin flawlessly integrates this with a totally immersive fantasy world. And if you are a part of the story, then who is the narrator? I just can’t say enough about this book that had me turning every page saying, “tell me more!” [Trigger Warning: child death.]


Who am I?

My love of unusual narration probably stems from my rabid consumption of “Choose Your Own Adventure” books in my youth. Why read a book about someone else when the story could be yours? While I’m glad to say that my library has since expanded, I still appreciate the unusual and bizarre viewpoint when I read. Perhaps a self-portrait? In any case, I’ve also used some unique narrative tools in my own writing through the point of view of my fictional WHISPs and also through cryptic journal entries. If you’re looking for something different by way of narration, I’m confident you’ll enjoy these five best books.


I wrote...

Whispers of a Killer

By Jen Haeger,

Book cover of Whispers of a Killer

What is my book about?

“We the jury find the defendant, Rachel Iris Chester, guilty.” And just like that, Sylvia Harbinger’s life as an NYPD detective is over. Sylvia is done with serial killers, done with therapy, and done with a New York City now rife with WHISPs—the creepy, grey shadows of her nightmares. She and husband Ben have a deal, a last-ditch effort to save their marriage. Sylvia retires and they move to Montana to escape the WHISP phenomenon.

Then the phone rings. There’s been a copycat murder, and Sylvia can’t let the case go. If she missed something the first time, this new blood is on her hands. Ben gives her a month to work the case, but can their marriage and her sanity survive that long?

The Institute

By Stephen King,

Book cover of The Institute

Stephen King is known for his artsy works, but The Institute felt different than the other stories. The book is divided up into sections, and in these sections were chapters. It was an interesting way to format a book, but what pulled me into the story was the fantasy magic of telekinesis, almost a runoff of his book The Shining. The psychology was captivating while the young characters were tormented for their punishments of betrayal against the mysterious school, but every kid had their own shine to them, a special talent or gift of nature inside.


Who am I?

Growing up, I melted into the cinematic universe. And it was always the fantasies that made me feel wonderous. Star Wars, Skyrim, Fallout, Dune, The Hunger Games, you name it, they all sucked me in during the darkest times in life. That’s why I write, for the children and the young adults. I want them to experience my worlds to understand their own. I earned my BFA in Creative Writing at Full Sail University. I hope to translate my books into screenplays while my dream and goal is to watch my own story on the big screen with a bucket of popcorn in my hands.


I wrote...

Tolerance Book One

By Ethan Marek,

Book cover of Tolerance Book One

What is my book about?

In an overpopulated, climate-crisis world, the country of Haven prepares for an upcoming war with the neighboring country of Zovia. They're on the brink of nuclear battle, but an experimental idea may swing the power to the citizens who live on Haven's frozen crust.

Kids between the ages of six and eighteen are drafted to Project Tolerance, a digital warfare simulation, constructing supersoldiers by exposing them to pain, reaching for a high pain Tolerance.

This book is available for pre-order on the author's website.

Firestarter

By Stephen King,

Book cover of Firestarter

Andy and his sweet daughter Charlie are on the run from a cynical and unaccountable agency, the Shop. As students, Andy and Vicky took part in an unethical government experiment that gave them psychic powers – when Charlie is born, she turns out to have an even greater power, creating fire with her mind. The Shop tries to snatch them, and Vicky is killed. What makes the story shine is how adorable Charlie is and the lengths to which Andy goes to protect her. He has taught her to shun her power, and yet in life and death situations, she has no other choice to save her dad. The book ends with Charlie making a smart decision on how to make things right. A powerful influence on my writing.


Who am I?

I write imaginative fiction in worlds mostly looking like ours. I’m deeply interested in character as well as ideas. Writers must be careful handing out great power, as it can wreck the sense of peril. In Our Child of the Stars, Cory is innocent, enormously kind, engaging, and lovable. He brings his new family into many dangers. One power is first used to save his parents, not understanding the terrible harm it will do. His empathy makes it horrific to use. ‘Sweet kids, terrible powers’ means the bad guys can get their comeuppance but only rarely. Keep compassion key, keep the powers a last resort, and keep the readers guessing.


I wrote...

Our Child of the Stars

By Stephen Cox,

Book cover of Our Child of the Stars

What is my book about?

The USA, in the time of Woodstock and the Moon landings. Childless couple Gene and Molly have been through dark times, then the Meteor strikes their small town. They adopt an orphaned boy from the stars and call him Cory, forming a deeply loving family. How can they keep him safe unless they keep him a secret?  Danger soon comes both on Earth, and from the stars.  Cory reveals unexpected talents, and the family is driven to flee…

Reviewers called it “heartfelt, imaginative and gripping”. The LA Times said, "...a wonderfully emotional, heart-warming journey of what it really means to be a parent". Sequel - Our Child of Two Worlds. 

Rumors of War

By A.K. DuBoff,

Book cover of Rumors of War

Amy is amazing at writing characters you really care about. Her fans have dubbed her the Queen of Space Opera and they’re not wrong. On top of her characters, she does a great job with suspense and plot twists that make it hard to stop reading. I loved how entertaining these books are and I feel as though every space opera fan should check them out. 


Who am I?

I’ve held a burgeoning interest in the stars since I was a young girl. Daydreams of adventure and exploration guided me to the genre. Once I found it, I consumed everything I could find, both on-screen and in the pages of books. There’s something to be said about the vulnerability of being in the vastness of space, oftentimes with strangers who grow to be family. I guess, in a way, it reminds me of that moment when we set out into the world, away from our families, to learn and explore more about our surroundings and the characters we meet along the way (only on a much grander scale). 


I wrote...

Vengeance Lost: Ardent Redux Saga: Episode 1

By J.L. Stowers,

Book cover of Vengeance Lost: Ardent Redux Saga: Episode 1

What is my book about?

Star Captain Dani Devereaux dreamt of following in her father's footsteps... but she had no idea where they'd lead her. Hard work and dedication earned her a respected position in the Galactic Conglomerate. Then things went sideways. Dani and her crew get caught up in a battle nobody can win. She has only seconds to make the most momentous decision of her career. But is it the right choice? Dani doubts her instincts as the repercussions ripple out of control and the Galactic Conglomerate hunts for a place to pin the blame.

If you love action-packed space adventures then join Dani and her crew, because the real battle is just beginning. Heads will roll in this first installment of the Ardent Redux Saga - an episodic rapid release space opera serial. 

The Midwich Cuckoos

By John Wyndham,

Book cover of The Midwich Cuckoos

What’s worse than an evil child? Try a whole gang of alien telekinetic children who insinuate themselves into ordinary women’s wombs while they’re stricken unconscious. Wyndham’s sci-fi/horror book is a seminal classic and has been filmed several times, and it’s easy to see why. The destruction of a quiet (and rather uptight) British village at the hands of the coldly clinical children is terrifying fun, and the ending, in which the villagers attempt to defy their new overlords, is perfection.


Who am I?

As a horror writer, the evil kid subgenre holds great appeal to me. I’ve written about them a few times, most notably in my novella Sour Candy, which remains the most popular thing I’ve written, perhaps because, like in the books mentioned above, we don’t expect our children to be evil monsters, and when they are, we’re ill-prepared to deal with the threat. They’re still children, after all, and we’re supposed to love and protect them. The emotional quandaries this situation presents are fascinating to write about.


I wrote...

Sour Candy

By Kealan Patrick Burke,

Book cover of Sour Candy

What is my book about?

At first glance, Phil Pendleton and his son Adam are just an ordinary father and son, no different from any other. Some might say the father is a little too accommodating given the lack of discipline when the child loses his temper in public. Some might say he spoils his son by allowing him to set his own bedtimes and eat candy whenever he wants. Some might say such leniency is starting to take its toll on the father, given how his health has declined.

What no one knows is that Phil is a prisoner, and that up until a few weeks ago and a chance encounter at a grocery store, he had never seen the child before in his life.

Carrie

By Stephen King,

Book cover of Carrie

Perennial bestselling author Stephen King has written many stories about outsiders, but his first novel, Carrie, is my favorite—maybe because I would have loved to have had a power like Carrie’s when I was in high school, although I wouldn’t have used it in such a gruesome and destructive way. I hope.

Carrie White is a shy, unpopular high school girl with the ability to make objects move by just thinking about them. She has kept her talent bottled up inside her, but when a “mean girl” plays a prank on her at the prom, she unleashes the full fury of her power on the school gym packed full of people—guilty and innocent alike—the town, and her fundamentalist mother.


Who am I?

I’ve always been drawn to stories about outsiders, those people who are different from their peers. Outsiders may feel a deep sense of isolation. They are often ostracized or even persecuted because of their difference. Sometimes the outsiders triumph, sometimes they fail, but they are all striving to come to terms with what makes them different. I think this topic resonates with lots of people, myself included, because many of us for a variety of reasons sometimes feel isolated from others. This theme of differentness, of isolation, is a thread that runs through much of my writing.


I wrote...

In Human Form

By David Kubicek,

Book cover of In Human Form

What is my book about?

Wendy remembers nothing about the farmhouse fire that killed her father. She doesn't even remember her own name. Jared Parker, her guardian, has learned that she is not human, that she isn’t of this world at all, that she is an android. But he doesn’t tell Wendy, not even when he sees her falling in love with police officer Aaron McCormick. Butch Cruickshank, one of the young punks who set fire to Wendy’s home, discovers her secret and brings ruthless millionaire UFO hunter Earl Vaughn to town. Vaughn has offered $10,000 to anyone who finds an alien artifact, and an android is certainly worthy of the prize. When Vaughn realizes Wendy’s true origin, she becomes a pawn in his deadly scheme for world domination.   

The True Game

By Sheri S. Tepper,

Book cover of The True Game

Within the lands of the True Game, humans possess specific 'talents', such as shape-shifting or telekinesis. Much like a planet-sized game of chess each player is utilised in great 'games' of war that ravage the planet. Enter Peter, a young necromancer, who must uncover the truth behind the disappearance of prominent gamesmen from the board.

Wildly clever and surprisingly touching, it's a novel I've read and re-read many times over the past 35 years.


Who am I?

I'm a spec-fic writer who has been fascinated by the world building and deep creativity of sci-fi and fantasy novels for over 40 years. A common theme in these genres is the use and abuse of power, especially of systems of authority that the main characters battle against—not always successfully! I've recently published a complete fantasy trilogy dealing with these same themes—The Wraith Cycle—and am looking forward to the publication of my next stand-alone sci-fi novel—The Currents Of Infinity—due to come out within the next year.


I wrote...

The Blood Within The Stone

By T.R. Thompson,

Book cover of The Blood Within The Stone

What is my book about?

In the isolated traders’ town of Greystone, two young thieves named Wilt and Higgs scratch out a living on the street. Both have quick minds and even quicker fingers, but Wilt has another weapon, an ability to sink into others' thoughts, reading them, knowing before they do what action they will take. Such power is not easily hidden when the Prefects of Redmondis come through town on a pilgrimage to recruit skilled ones, wielders, those who have an affinity with the secret welds that join all living things.

Epic fantasy with an original magic system, likable characters, and enthralling prose—a hidden treasure waiting to be discovered by YA and older readers alike.

Matilda

By Roald Dahl, Quentin Blake (illustrator),

Book cover of Matilda

Matilda is a genius and a rebel. When her parents neglect her, she gets back at them with (seriously funny) pranks. 

At school, Matilda and the other children are bullied and terrorized by the headmistress. Matilda has a superpower. She can move physical objects without touching them. Her other superpower is her super brain. She combines them to drive away the evil headmistress.

Three reasons: 1. I like the idea of the brain being a superpower. 2. I’m partial to books with strong girls and Matilda is as strong as they come. 3. Sadly, child neglect happens. Child abuse happens. Matilda is an empowering book where children hit back at the adult villains in their lives.


Who am I?

I write for adults and for children; more for children, less for adults. I have books out for middle graders, for ages 8-10, and also picture books for kids. As a parent and an author, I believe that while picture books and short chapter books spark an interest in reading in children, middle grade is when reading is inculcated into a lifelong habit. 


I wrote...

Tara and the Giant Queen: A Fantasy in Giant Land

By Gita V. Reddy,

Book cover of Tara and the Giant Queen: A Fantasy in Giant Land

What is my book about?

Tara and the Giant Queen is a fantasy in the Land of Giants. After a storm, nine-year-old Tara finds herself in a strange land where everything is gigantic. She accidentally lands on the head of the queen of giants and is taken into her care. The good queen promises to help her return home but there are evil giants who believe Tara is a magician and are out to capture her for her magic powers. What follows is danger, courage, and a fascinating journey home. And yes, fun, because Tara and the boy-giant, Montek, become great friends.

The Running Game

By L.E. Fitzpatrick,

Book cover of The Running Game

Some dystopian books show futures that aren’t relatable or believable at all. The whole story is a great mix of genres – not just dystopian but also sci-fi, thriller, and it reads like a crime novel with mobsters.  The reachers themselves are telepathic/telekinetic and add a unique dimension to a story that otherwise could fit in with a non-fantasy setting. The world-building in this book is so effective exactly because it feels real. I was sucked in and sympathetic toward the reachers because you can easily put many different peoples in their place today, and the political and social aspects of the story feel frighteningly possible.


Who am I?

I’ve been pulled to rich, deep, complex fiction all my life. And I started building my own world when I was nine, adding to The Kota Series over two decades. Even while getting an English Literature degree, I was bored by simple worlds, characters, and stories and always found myself more interested in unique books and fresh reads. Really, the weirder the world, the better! That’s what I’ve continued to look for as a reader, and I’ve been lucky to encounter new authors that a lot of people might not have heard about yet. I’ve found some real world-building gems, like these I’ve discussed. I hope to find many more!


I wrote...

The Kota: Book 1

By Sunshine Somerville,

Book cover of The Kota: Book 1

What is my book about?

Mankind is stricken. Brought to its knees by a devastating virus, the world is further crushed by the Dominion tyranny. Humanity struggles to survive this apocalyptic nightmare, and there’s only one hope – the ancient promise of an annihilated people.  

The Kota is a science fantasy epic that begins the story of the prophesied Kota Warriors as they fight to save mankind. No hero is perfect, and no journey goes as expected. For the Kota Warriors, this means discovering who they are as well as how they can possibly defeat their enemy. Jump into this dystopian story and enjoy the twists and turns along the way!

The Many-Colored Land

By Julian May,

Book cover of The Many-Colored Land

Perhaps more of a “portal” story than strictly time travel, May’s Saga of the Exiles spurred my imagination from the very start, and was at least partly responsible for inspiring my own work. The scale is vast, and I found the mental (“metapsychic”) powers the Exiles develop cleverly categorized and utilized in the stories, both here and in the following Galactic Milieu trilogy. I was so wrapped up in these stories that, perhaps more than any other series I’ve read, I was sorry to leave them behind and have returned to reread them many times.

The time-travel aspect of the story – the Pliocene Gateway – is given an interesting set of temporal and geographical limitations which I found refreshingly realistic when compared with other tales of time travel.


Who am I?

I’m a British author with a lifetime’s love of science fiction, fantasy, and horror. I have a particular love for stories that explore both sides of the fantastical abilities they introduce us to, where the heroes battle with their own personal demons alongside the actual bad guys, and where the invented science is so plausible that I can lose myself in the strange world and not be popped out of the story thinking “well, that couldn’t work, because…” The potential for disastrous consequences is ever-present in time travel stories, one of the main reasons they hold such fascination for me. 


I wrote...

Gatekeeper: Planetary Colonization meets Elemental Fantasy

By John Beresford,

Book cover of Gatekeeper: Planetary Colonization meets Elemental Fantasy

What is my book about?

Jann Argent has no memory of committing the murder that landed him in prison. So when he’s offered a chance at freedom, he accepts the price of exile to humanity’s first colony planet. But when the ship crash lands on the new world, he’s shocked to discover an indigenous population and a strange sense of familiarity.

Stunned when he and several other shipmates develop mystical powers, Jann discovers previous colonists have all joined one of two rival native houses. And with a tyrant’s power-play set to devastate the realm, he’s about to become the lynchpin in a magical war that could destroy him.

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