15 recent sci-fi books that forever shaped the genre
About the future, shaping the future
Science fiction is in a constant state of flux, and coming up with a solidified canon is something that will vary from person to person. Certainly, there are classics throughout the genre, books that stand far apart from their peers, like Frank Herbert’s Dune, Robert Heinlein’s Starship Troopers, or Ursula K. Le Guin’s The Left Hand of Darkness. These books are legendary not only for providing readers with much to think about, but also impacting the writers that follow them, influencing subject matter, technique, perspective.
The last 15 years have provided plenty of fodder for science fiction authors, and looking back, it’s clear that science fiction is in a period of transition: there are more people writing stories than ever before, from every type of background and on a variety of new platforms that didn’t exist before. And amidst that transition, there have been plenty of novels that have broken through and changed how science fiction looks.
The following 14 books are some of the most consequential and groundbreaking stories that have hit bookstores or bookshelves in that time: books that forever altered the genre in a number of ways by changing the conventions or tropes that authors traditionally used, blazed forward a path or popularized some new thing, or which have proven to be wildly popular with readers around the world.
“All parts should go together without forcing. You must remember that the parts you are reassembling were disassembled by you. Therefore, if you can’t get them together again, there must be a reason. By all means, do not use a hammer.” —IBM Manual, 1925